This particular painting in my collection is one that carries a high value to me. It came to me in the fall of 2005, about a month or two after Hurricane Katrina.
Many of my artist friends lived in St Bernard Parish, and the storm scattered everyone far and wide. I was able to contact a few of them after the storm, and we made arrangements to meet up in order to try to re-band our little artist guild. Unlike my friends in St Bernard, I didn't lose my home and everything in it. High winds and flying debris had tore the roof off my house and crushed my car, but I was spared from the worst of the disaster. I gathered up whatever extra art supplies I had in my studio and boxed them up so I could take them to the meeting and share them with my friends. Another artist friend, Delaina LeBlanc, heard what I was going to do, and she brought several boxes of her own art supplies for me to add to the pot. Among her items was this lovely painting. She was hoping that one of the artists might re-use the canvas by painting over it. She didn't even know any of these people, and she had her own storm losses to to deal with, but she wanted to help in any way that she could. I asked her if it was alright if I kept this painting for myself, because I felt it was too beautiful to be painted over. She pointed out that it was just an quick study from her younger days and not really a finished piece of art, but she gave it to me anyway. That's the true value in this painting -- friendship.
Annie Strack is an award winning classically trained marine artist who teaches, writes, and curates when she is not painting- or checking out the art scene in her fairly recent home of Chester County, PA.