It’s been a super busy couple of weeks in the studio. I can’t believe it’s just a few days until Tom and I embark on a new adventure – a three-week excursion to Italy!
I had to double down in the studio to finish in time, but my new painting, “Glad Tidings at Gimbels” is ready for unveiling! I’m off to the printer today to tweak the details to make sure everything is just right. There will be more information about it on my website soon, including pre-orders!
Meanwhile, there’s been a lot going on in my studio since I last wrote you. As you can see in the photo, it looked like quite the mad, mad, mad, mad world! Resources were strewn about as I pored over photograph after photograph, vintage images of Gimbels over the decades, most in black and white, rarely in color.
There were photos of streetcars from the Trolley Museum in Washington, PA, photos from a friend who shared his collection with me, and photos I’ve collected myself over the years. There were photos of people who posed for me, people from other photo shoots that I borrowed, and some from the past of people just walking around downtown (and maybe even a few imaginary friends?). I had a collection of photos of display windows, though I made up the one on the right featuring Raggedy Ann and Andy because one of my faithful readers wrote me and asked me to!
I used more pastels pencils and soft pastels than my taboret could hold at times, and my obsessive need for detail actually led to the premature demise of two pencil sharpeners. But at last, with a final dab of snow, it was finished.
My hope is that you’ll see what I see in this painting – all the magic of Pittsburgh’s nostalgic downtown holiday shopping of yesteryear… with memories of swirling snow and merrily sparkling lights… and the rush of shoppers seeking holiday treasures at the iconic Gimbels Department Store. I want this painting to inspire you to once again experience the excitement of the holiday season in days gone by.
The official release date for “Glad Tidings at Gimbels” will be August 1, 2023.
P.S. – I was driving through the Northside last week, and I just had to stop and see Gus. I knew he would be there! Even at 90, he’s still as wonderful as ever. I strongly recommend that you go and experience Gus and Yiayia’s, a beloved Northside tradition. I guarantee it will bring a smile to your face and some yummy treats to your tummy!