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Sunday, January 15, 2012

The Ball Player

As long as I can remember my Dad has always loved baseball.  As long as I can remember he has always played baseball; he even played the game into his seventy's.  It was just recently that he reluctantly decided to give up the game and watch from the sidelines.  When I asked him why, he told me it was because he just wasn't as fast a runner as he used to be.  I admire my Dad for the dedication he has shown for playing the game he has loved all his life, and he may not run as fast as he used to, but he can still hit the ball.

In my late teens, when my husband and I were dating, we played in a local merchant team with some of the staff from the company my husband worked for. It was always a good time playing with the "Home All" bunch.  Lots of good ribbing and baseball lingo flew through the air at each other, along with the baseball.  I remember my Dad coming to watch many of those games and it wouldn't have matter if the game was for fun or if we were in the major leagues; my Dad was always out there cheering and giving the umpire a few hints on how to call the game.

I came across an old grainy picture taken in 1958 of my Dad sitting on a large rock in his baseball uniform. I remember seeing this photo when I was a young child as I rummaged through the picture box.  I always loved this photo and being partial to painting in black and white I decided to take it upon myself to paint this for him.

The day I planned on unveiling the painting and showing it to my Dad was the first day of my first solo show. I could picture him getting all choked up and being totally thrilled over it. I showed the painting to a couple friends who knew my dad and they recognized him right away. When it was time to show my Dad the painting I felt quite emotional and knew this was going to be really special. As I barely held it together I took him over to the painting and showed it to him. I knew he would be really happy to see himself immortalized in oil paint, especially in his ball uniform. After all this, the waiting, the anticipation, the excitement, my Dad looked at the painting and his first remarks where: “Who’s that? Is that Bob?”

Needless to say, the painting hangs in my studio waiting for Bob to claim it!

Original Oil
18” x 24”
Private Collection

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