She rarely asked me for help, but I always offered. Usually I would just carry her supplies around, or I would help do the cleaning. This time I brought her a refill of water to mix in her paint. She was painting an arranged set of flowers which were placed on a chair, and she thanked me for my assistance.
My mother loves art. It’s her only hobby, and her main passion in life. She’s an art teacher at the college I attend. I’ve never taken any of her classes, but I’ve heard they’re a lot of fun, which didn’t surprise me because of my mother’s positive outlook on life. She also makes a decent amount of money selling her artwork, and painting custom portraits for people. She even has the reputation of being one of the best artists in the city.
I watched my mother continue to paint. Her eyes were completely focused on her task. I’ve always thought she was a beautiful person. When she concentrating on painting, she looked even more beautiful. The passion showed in her eyes.
We were in the area of the house which my mother uses to make her art. There were paintings and drawings decorating the walls. Some of the images were of objects, or plants. Others were portraits she made of other people. Some of the people were clothed, some were naked. My mother never minded nudity. She’s someone who believes that the naked human body is one of the most beautiful things in the world. I agree with her.
Mom’s Nude Portraits
When I came home from my college class, there was another car in the driveway, and the door to my mom’s art room was closed. That usually meant she was painting someone nude, otherwise her door would be left open. I went to my room and did my normal things. Then I went to the living room to watch tv.
About half an hour later, the door opened and I heard my mother talking to another woman, which immediately got my attention. I stood up when they walked to the entrance near the living room, and I said ‘hello’ to female model, and ‘bye’ before she left. The model was around my age, and very pretty.
When my mother closed the door, she gave me a playfully stern look.
“Who was that?” I asked eagerly.
“Don’t get any funny ideas,” she replied in her motherly tone. “She’s a new model I’m working with. I don’t want you chasing her away.”
“Me? Why would I do that?”
“Because that’s the kind of guy you are,” she joked.
I shrugged. “As long as you’re going to keep bringing hot women to our house, I can’t complain.”
“I’m glad you’re okay with it, because there will probably be a few more models stopping by.”
“I found out this morning that my role in the upcoming art exhibition is going to be much bigger than before,” she replied proudly. “I’ll be given extra space to showcase my work. I already have plenty of abstract paintings, but I need more portraits. Those are usually my best sellers.”
“That’s great mom. That means more money, and more women coming here right?” I playfully replied.
She raised an eyebrow. “Is that all you think about? Money and women.”
“It was a joke. I’m really happy for you.”
She smiled, “Thanks. This art exhibition is the biggest I’ve ever been featured in. A number of prominent figures in the art community are going to attend. So I’m very excited. I found out this morning and I got started right away. That’s why I called that sexy young model here at the last minute.”
“I’ve noticed. You usually don’t paint women my age. You usually paint older women, no offense. So that was kind of surprising to me when I saw her.”
She nodded. “With all the space I’m getting for this years art exhibit, I’ve decided to expand my boundaries. I want to explore diversity. So I’ll be painting everyone from college students, to senior citizens, and people from different ethnic backgrounds. I’m very excited about it.”
“I can tell. You look excited. It’s great seeing you like this. I know you’ll get the recognition you deserve.”
My mother gave me a skeptical look, as if she was wondering if I was being sarcastic or not. When she determined that I was being sincere, she gave me a big hug, even with all the paint on her clothes.
“You’re too sweet,” she replied. “Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to wash up.”
The next few months I saw my mother working harder than usual. She taught a few classes during the day, and she continued selling custom made artwork, or selling her artwork online. She did things the way they were always done.
But whenever she found a new model, she would become excited, and it would be her main priority. I would help her set up the room and help arrange her painting supplies. When she was done, I would help her clean everything. Unfortunately, she never let me watch her paint anyone in the nude. She said I would be distracting to her, but I think the real reason was that she didn’t want me drooling over some of the beautiful naked women that showed up.
She also meant what she said about wanting to paint a diverse crowd. The women that posed for my mother were of various age ranges, and different ethnic backgrounds. Some of the models were pale white, others were brown or black.
Even though I never got to watch my mother paint, she didn’t mind when I saw the finished product of her painting. She always asked for my opinion, and I always told her the truth. Her nude portraits were amazing. They captured the beauty and feelings of the woman who were painted. There was an incredible amount of detail to their bodies, and you could see the emotions painted in their eyes. I could understand why mom’s portraits were always her bestsellers.
After she had enough female models, my mother focused on painting men. Most of the male models were older, and of different ethnic backgrounds. But like she said, she wanted people of all age ranges.
*** POSING FOR MOM’S PORTRAIT ***
It was a Saturday morning. I arranged the paint and art supplies for my mother. It was the last nude painting she planned on doing before the art exhibition, which was only a week away. I heard my mother talking on the phone in the other room. I didn’t pay much attention to what she was saying, but I could tell she was talking to the model based on some of the words she used.
After I finished setting everything up, my mother came into the room with an upset look on her face.
“He’s not coming,” she said. “Apparently he’s having second thoughts, which is understandable, but the timing couldn’t be worse.”
“That shouldn’t be a problem. There are plenty of other male models right?”
“I need a young adult. Most of the young male models who live nearby are university students. I wouldn’t feel comfortable asking someone from campus to come to my house to be nude. That wouldn’t exactly be great for my reputation.”
“Good point,” I replied. “Why don’t you just get another model that’s an older age? You’ve never had problems with that before.”
“The whole point of my collection is that I’m featuring a wide array of age groups. I already have several portraits of older men.”
“Does it matter? I don’t think people would notice if you used an older man and painted him to look younger.”
She flashed me a stern look. “Yes, it does matter. Artistic integrity is important to me. My collection has a theme to it. Without the final portrait, the collection would look incomplete.”
“If it’s that important, then I’m sure you’ll find someone soon enough.”
“I hope so,” she sighed. “Thank you for your help setting up my supplies. I really appreciate it.”
“Don’t mention it.”
She smiled, “We’ll leave everything here. I’ll make a few phone calls and hopefully I can find someone by tomorrow.”
“What’s the rush? The exhibit isn’t until next weekend.”
“I know. But it’s important for me to set everything up in the gallery as early as possible. I’ll have more time to prepare my oral presentations that way. Plus I don’t like rushing at the last minute. My work is better when I’m relaxed and my head is clear.”
I nodded. “That makes sense.”
“Thank you again for spending your Saturday morning with me. I know you could have done so many other things instead. I really appreciate it.”
With that said, my mother gave me a kiss on the cheek to show her gratitude. It felt nice. Her kisses were always special because they were loving. I smiled at her, and she smiled back. She knew I liked it.
The next morning I sat in front of the tv while I ate breakfast. I hadn’t seen my mother yet. I knew she was on the phone in her bedroom, but I couldn’t hear what she was saying since her door was closed.
When she came out of her room, she greeted me with an unusually warm expression on her face. She was dressed in the outfit she wears to paint. She gave me another kiss on the cheek, a big one. Then she thanked me again for all my help. She sat down next to me, and she placed my finished bowl of cereal on a nearby counter.
“I’m assuming you’re free today, right?” she asked curiously, and politely.
Something was off. My mother is a very nice woman, and she always treats everyone with kindness, but this was different. I knew my mother well enough to realize that she needed a big favor- but I didn’t know what.
“Yeah, I’m free today,” I replied skeptically. “Are you painting someone?”
“I’ll get to that in a moment. But you see the beauty in what I’m doing right?”
“Of course I do. I think your art is great.”
“Good,” she smiled. “I’m glad you think so. I started painting when I was around your age. It changed my life in a wonderful way because it gave me direction. It gave me a way to express myself creatively, and I feel in love with it.”
“Why do I get the feeling that you’re about to ask me something unusual?”
“I couldn’t find another model on short notice,” she replied sincerely. “So I want youto pose for me instead.”
My mother gave me a heartfelt look, which was intended to make me feel bad if I refused. I was shocked, and I’m sure she expected that.
“You can’t be serious, are you? You want me to pose for you?”
She nodded. “That’s what I said.”
She nodded again. “All of the portraits have to be nude. I also realize that you don’t want anyone seeing your nude portrait, so you can simply turn your head away while I paint. I’ll focus mainly on your body. No one will recognize you. I promise”
“No way,” I replied. “I’m sorry mom, but that’s never going to happen. Why don’t you just paint an imaginary person? Make it up. No one would ever know the difference.”
My mother flashed me a stern look. “That’s completely out of the question. I wouldn’t be a real artist if I did that, and I feel like I would be cheating whoever buys it. Besides, using a real person always looks better.”
“How about I pose with my clothes on? Maybe I’ll compromise and do it in my underwear. You can use your imagination and paint the rest.”
“That won’t work,” she replied staunchly. “I wouldn’t be true to myself as an artist. The painting must be pure, or it means nothing. I would feel like a con woman if I tried to display stuff like that.”
Looking in my mother’s eyes, I could tell there was no arguing with her. She made up her mind, and there were no other option. My mother is a very persistent woman, she always has been. That’s part of the reason why she became so successful in the first place.
“You’re really not giving me much of a choice here mom.”
She shook her head. “Apparently not.”