Generating the Gist

Did you ever notice a scene that you wanted to capture but didn’t have a camera or any way to record it at the time?

That’s what happened to me one morning when I stopped for breakfast at a little local coffee shop. It was apparent that everyone knew everyone else there. The regulars called the waitress by name, and she knew their standard orders. The stories they told were the same ones they seem to have told every morning to anyone who would listen, and gossip got top billing among the daily specials.

150602w Morning Joe and Sunshine

Having captured a few details in my mind as general impressions, I recreated the scene in watercolor after I returned home. The result is “Morning Joe and Sunshine” (#150602w), above. Much detail is omitted or changed to suit my purposes, but the gist and impression of the scene are enough to tell the story.

No, these are not portraits of the folks who actually peopled the place, yet my painting serves as a portrait of the genre, the local coffee shop, the morning hangout for absorbing some morning light, companionship, and an invigorating cup of joe or two before making the daily trek to work. And that, after all, was my goal.

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