Elvis Has Left The Building?

I’m sure some may wonder why I choose to share so much of ‘me’ – of my personal life?

Open-BookIt is true, I am in many ways an ‘open book’.  It’s not that I have a very interesting life. Really.  Most of the time it’s gloriously mundane.  And I’m sure it would be far easier to just focus on painting on the blog.  But how fun would that be? It might be ‘real’ and it may be ‘fun’ – but is it ‘real fun‘?  “Today we will talk about shades of pink, and then we’ll transition to Mamma’s Secret Recipe for Frozen Hash Browns, straight from the bag”.

Oh, just shoot me now.

Plus, there seems to be bad news around every corner these days.  Does it hurt to share personal experiences, in the hope that it will connect with someone else? Maybe someone’s having a rough day and then they read my blog and think nice thoughts.  I think life should consist of random nice thoughts – every now and again.  Like wine.  Wine is always a nice thought.

Today I’m going to write about something nice.  Something dear to my heart.

 Art on a personal level.

I love fabulous art.  I could stare at it all day.

lady of shallotThis is an oil painting named ‘The Lady of Shalott’, by John William Waterhouse.

(The Lady of Shalott is actually a (really, really long) poem penned by Tennyson):

On either side the river lie
Long fields of barley and of rye,
That clothe the wold and meet the sky;
And thro’ the field the road runs by
To many-tower’d Camelot;
And up and down the people go,
Gazing where the lilies blow
Round an island there below,
The island of Shalott.

There is a strong likelihood that if Mr. Waterhouse were still alive I would apply to be his groupie. I love his work THAT much.  Most of the image transfers that I have used are in the Pre-Raphaelite style.  I love the tone of them.  The Lady of Shalott is the image that I’m going to use next on a massive piece of furniture I have.  How can you not?

The desk I did was also by Waterhouse.  One croppedThis one is called Bordeas (The Greek God of the North Wind).  Yes, it would have been nice had I cleaned the floor before taking this picture.  What can I tell you?  Where’s photoshop when you need it?  Don’t judge.

But, while I have my favorites by-john-william-waterhouse(I also have this in line for another piece)

I realize that art is very subjective.  And that there are certain images that can elicit deep emotions within us, for a multitude of reasons.  Those are the pieces of art that are priceless.

For instance, take Elvis. Elvis

Yes, Elvis.  Elvis Presley aka The King.  What does he have in common with Waterhouse? Well, funny you should ask, because I love them both (but in different ways).

{smooth seamless transition to my next segment}

One day I fell in love with a guy named Donald (seriously, who names a baby Donald??).  Don’t even get me started.

I was a city girl and loved to go to wine bars and dressing up.  Donald didn’t.  He didn’t care for fashion.

I knew this immediately.    (need I say more).

But I loved Donald, and was ga-ga for him regardless of the peach sleeveless t-shirt that he wore; the one with the skull and crossbones everywhere.  I did not care.  I was in love I tell you!  Don lived in a horrible ground floor apartment with his friend (for the sake of the story, let’s call him Brock).  They shared a passion for anything tasteless.  Their prized possession was a black velvet painting of Elvis.  It was strangely hideous, seriously seriously hideous.  Sometimes the roomies would change the bulb above it to a ‘black’ light, so that Elvis would glow.  Quite frightening.  We were never quite sure whether the drip running down Elvis’ face was a tear or sweat.  (It was Elvis, it could have been liquid cocaine for all we knew).Elvis1

When Brock moved out, it seemed only natural that I would move in.   Elvis quickly became a bone of contention.  If I was going to move in, Brock AND Elvis would need to leave the building.  Pronto.  And it was agreed.  Donald loved Diane.  Diane loved Donald. There wasn’t enough love for the three of us to share.  Elvis had to go with Brock.

I moved in.

Elvis moved out.

We were happy.

The two of us.

Then, it happened.  I came home late from school one night and the lights were turned down low.  {weird}.  Then Donald pulled me aside, turned on the light, and asked me to look towards the wall.

Elvis was back.  WHAT??? WHAT THE….

The black light was back too.  YOU HAVE TO BE KIDDIN ME.  And The King was singing in the background. (someone is going to get hurt tonight, and it’s not me).

And Donald asked me to dance.  And then he stopped and said ‘I think we should just look at Elvis’.  (Had Donald been smoking crack again?).  And so we did.  We stood in the middle of the room looking at a black velvet sweating/crying? Elvis.  Then I noticed something on Elvis’ face.

“Oh no! He’s torn, look the picture has a tear in it”.  (so there is a God after all).  For a brief moment I actually felt quite bad;  I knew how much Don loved the picture.  Oh well, and moving right along.

I went closer to look at the tear that would rid me of this piece of poo forever, and saw that the rip wasn’t actually a rip.  It was the gleam from a diamond ring that was attached to the picture.

And Donald proposed to Diane.

And Diane said Yes.

And then it dawned on me that I had just agreed to spend the rest of my life with a man who had just played me.  Now I could never get rid of black velvet Elvis.


And twenty years later, Black Velvet Elvis is still with us (admittedly hanging in the garage).  P1060795But, honestly, it’s something that I could never ever get rid of.  It’s priceless to me.

I will put my Black Velvet Elvis against John William Waterhouse any day.

Because art is subjective.  At the end of the day, there’s either good art or great art.

{insert catchy ending phrase here}

Diane aka The Paint Factory

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17 thoughts on “Elvis Has Left The Building?

  • January 22, 2015 at 7:11 pm

    Oh Diane, this is my favorite blog post so far!! I just love you in every possible way, except sexual, although you are gorgeous, just not my cup of tea…………
    Seriously, I absolutely adore your writing, your art, and I am grateful that our paths crossed via Waterhouse finally. But you are going to be the death of me with that Lady of Shallot on the Scottish twist dresser. I hope I don’t go to jail trying to get the $ for that one since I am running out of jewelry, but never schemes when I really want something. See you soon my friend, until then listen to Eminem……………….Til I Collapse, your anthem from me………xoxo Keep mushing on Lady of Shallot

  • January 22, 2015 at 7:13 pm

    ps, Donald is a very good name, my father was a Donald Gerald Sr., my brother is a Jr. and there is something strong about the “Don”, but I don’t like The Donald with the comb over. Be nice!

  • January 22, 2015 at 9:20 pm

    Yeah if you give up painting you would still have a creative outlet in writing ! I thoroughly enjoy reading your posts . Thank you for inviting us into your life like this

  • January 23, 2015 at 4:38 am

    Such a great story!

  • January 23, 2015 at 6:56 am

    Diane, you made my day. You’re writting is awesome and so entertaining! Keep’em coming, enjoying this very much.

    • January 23, 2015 at 9:00 am

      Thank you Micheline for reinforcing the belief that it’s not all about the paint 🙂

  • January 23, 2015 at 8:21 am

    MY FAMILY HAS THAT VELVET ELVIS, I scream! Elvis used to show up for occasions, no matter where they were…at the park for my birthday get-together, at a restaurant, anywhere. I think he is now residing at my brother’s house. You’re right…Elvis will never leave our buildings! His death on August 12th, I believe, will forever overshadow my birthday, August 19th. Why did anyone ever think that Elvis painted on black velvet was attractive? Thank you for the reminder of Home and Family!

    • January 23, 2015 at 8:59 am

      I don’t know whether to be happy for you, or sad for you 🙂

    • January 24, 2015 at 10:18 am

      I think it might be wise to have your painting appraised though. I’m quite positive that ours is an ‘original’ and I’m sure my dim witted husband paid big bucks for that claim 🙂

  • January 23, 2015 at 11:53 am

    Great post, Diane! Thanks for the entertainment (thank you verra, verra much)!

  • January 23, 2015 at 3:29 pm

    I have the Lady of Shalott in my bedroom. I thought maybe she was Ophelia, so thanks for setting me straight! I just found your site and work yesterday and I love both your furniture and writing. I’ll be back. 🙂

    • January 23, 2015 at 4:54 pm

      Amazeballs! Thanks for stopping by! BTW – Ophelia is another one of my favorites (it is painted by Millais). Pre-Raphaelite (<3)

  • January 23, 2015 at 7:16 pm

    Love your posts. There is enough bad news in the world. I am so glad that you kept him for all these years! (You can decide whether I mean Donald or Elvis).

    • January 23, 2015 at 9:15 pm

      With Donald, it’s on a day to day basis 🙂

  • January 23, 2015 at 9:35 pm

    What a great “read”! Thanks for the laughs all at the expense of the “king”… too funny! Now about the art/paint stuff…. I have a bunch of Joseph Mucha post cards of his fabulous art deco beauties….and I think I even have an old calendar… now I know what I need to do with them… well sort of… but the creative juices are beginning to pulse in the blender. Taking a “gel transfer class in March” and maybe – just maybe this will be THE THING that sends me over the edge into something really unique and totally creative… thank you for the inspiration… Happy days!!

    • January 23, 2015 at 11:23 pm

      Good luck with the class Debbi! You’ll have to share your creations with me. You can never have too mucha of Mucha.

  • August 22, 2015 at 5:19 pm

    Yea, I like Elvis too..even on velvet.


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