Monday, July 25, 2011

I beamed from Ear to Ear

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Today’s Blog Post
I beamed from Ear to Ear
Yesterday was another monumental day in my life. It was another unforgettable high point for me.

In the past there have been lots of high point as well.

One was that special day in July 1968, Fredericton, New Brunswick, when the nurse came out to the waiting room holding a well bundled baby girl and said, “Mr. Lincoln I would like you to meet your baby girl.” Then she folded the cover of the white blanket back and Dana gave me that first look. Wow!

Then in January 1970, Oakville, Ontario, the Doctor came out to the waiting room and told me, “Congratulations Murray, you have another baby girl! Mom and baby are doing fine! You can go into see them shortly.”

Two very special high points – Double Wow!!

My life has been filled with high points – over an over again. Each time our daughters told us that they were pregnant and then when each baby arrived we hit another high moment in our lives. Each time left me beaming from ear to ear! That has happened 6 times now – Triple Wow!!!

There have been many Wow Moments for me. Over and over again I am humbled by what is happening around me.

But yesterday was filled with still more “Wow Moments” over and over again.

We had the privilege to attend a baseball game where our grandson Michael was playing first baseman. To watch this young guy stretch to get balls thrown his way – was amazing! Play after play Michael caught out the runner at First Base! I beamed as he played so effortlessly. Could we be watching the next major prospect for a major league baseball team!? I think so!
But then the ultimate moment happened. Christopher, my youngest grandson, sat beside me in a lawn chair and began opening his brief case – folio.

Earlier I had noticed him tugging it along with him as we got into the car. The other boys hadn’t brought anything with them – only Christopher.

As he unzipped the case I could see a three ringed binder inside and beside the paper were his pencils. He was going to draw as he watched the game.

I asked if he would like to draw with grandpa. He beamed from ear to ear. Grandpa just happened to slip in his own drawing materials and paper as well. I opened my portfolio and prepared to begin.

I asked Christopher if he would like to learn how to draw someone’s face. With a big grin from under his baseball cap he nodded enthusiastically and said, “Sure!”

In the next hour and half we sat together not far from home plate and beside his brother’s dug out. We watched a great game and did what we both love best – put lines and shading and ideas on paper.

This is the best way to spend Sunday afternoon that I know of. It is the highest spiritual moment that I could ever express. The words really are failing me. I can’t tell you what it is like to share something so special with someone that loves something so much! Four Times the WOW!!!! There has to be another word!

We began by drawing the left eye on the paper. Then we measured over one eye’s length to the right – that is where the other eye is located on this face. Perfect. Then we put the round iris into the right place so the person was looking out of the paper at us. Next came the pupil – the dark hole that allows light to come into the eye ball. It could be too big or the guy would look like he was frightened or too small and he would look like he is squinting in a bright light.

We colored in the pupil and the iris, then smudged it with our fingers to make it look smoother as the pencil was applied.

I looked over as Christopher was applying his finger to the lines he had drawn and the pencil shading he had added. He was intent on every line and up close, nose almost to the paper.

He paused and then leaned back with a smile on his face. The character that he was drawing appeared amazing already. The eyes had come to life and someone was looking out of his paper at him.

Then we went for the end of the nose. We found an imaginary dot between the eyes, then measured from that dot to the edge of an eye. That measurement brought straight down would be the end of the nose. A small line like a half circle was enough to make the nose just right. Then the side of the nose was added – it came just below the right and left side of each eye above. By drawing an imaginary line down – there was the nose.

Christopher grinned again. He had it perfectly.

When I told Christopher to look at my face and see that as a man grows older his nose is wider and longer than kids’ are. He grinned again. I don’t think any grandfather I know was ever looked at as close as I was yesterday.

The top and middle of the mouth was next. That came at one eye’s height below the nose. A small tick on the paper showed us how high or low to place the mouth. The sides of the mouth came about the middle of the pupil of the eye above… but if the guy was smiling – the mouth would be much wider.

“With the mouth you have to be careful… the lips need to be thinner on the top and little fatter on the bottom. Not too fat or the guy will look like a girl.” T old Christopher. Christopher giggled at that. He got it right away.

Next came the chin… it is about two and a half eye’s height below the mouth. A small line from left to right makes it just right.

Now the big jump. Measuring from that dot in the middle of the two eyes down to the chin with your pencil, then moving the pencil tip up above the dot – there is the top of the head. God put our eyes in between the top and bottom of our head.

Then we started to shape the head, which is like an upside down egg. If I draw it like an egg sits – small part up and big part down – the guy will look like Humpty Dumpty.

Now we have to look close at the person that we are drawing. Some heads have big bumps on the top left and right sides and some chins are bigger than others with some cheeks being wider and fatter than others.

“And Christopher is you are drawing a girl’s face and she has fat cheeks, make the cheeks a little smaller. If you make them too fat, she will be mad at you!” I said.

Christopher laughed again. He knew what I meant immediately.

To cover the bumps and lumps of the head we drew the hair on the head.

Christopher sat back and looked at the portrait that he was completing. He grinned again. It was a grin that spoke volumes when with help from his grandpa he had drawn his first “real person”… and the person was pretty good!

Next we drew a cat’s face looking out off the page… then a Hot Rod that turned into a Transformer. Christopher and I had gone to the Transformer Movie together and I had found out it was his “very most favorite movie ever!”

Christopher will be 10 years old in October 2011. This 9 ½ year old had just drawn with his grandpa for the last hour and a half without moving.

“Grandpa, can I go with my friend to the playground now? My butt is stuck to my shorts now. My chair is really hot!” The sun had been beating down on us and the heat of the day was still there at 4:45 PM.

I grinned as he ran off with his friend to the play ground.

I had just spent the most amazing time with one very talented boy that will some day do great things. He will likely become one of the best that there is in what ever art work he tries.

As Christopher and I sat drawing together, the parents of kids on the baseball team came over to take a look at what we were doing together. Time and time again they exclaimed, “Wow Christopher that is great! You are doing an excellent job!” Christopher replied, “Thanks. My grandpa is an artist and he is helping me to draw…”

I beamed from ear to ear!

~ Murray Lincoln ~ 

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