Forgetting fear, at least for a moment

I borrowed Me, Frida, brought it home, and didn’t look at it for a week. Maybe I was subconsciously avoiding the story of a woman who created without fear. Finally it was Michael who read it and placed it on the kitchen counter – You’ve got to look at this book – it made me think of you.

Just that pronouncement motivated me to avoid reading it for several more days.

I happened to be eating breakfast all by myself this morning, for the first time in maybe forever, so I glanced at it. What do I need from Frida Kahlo? She’s got nothing to do with  me. I’d seen her work when we were in Mexico City, and I’ve got that postcard of her with the monkey on her shoulder. I saw the movie version of her life, which was fine, but I couldn’t get on board with Alfred Molina as Diego Rivera.

I was surprised that this story of Frida and Diego in San Francisco touched my heart. David Diaz’s illustrations are gorgeous (as is all of his work), and Amy Novesky was able to capture the story in a form that’s both magical and straightforward. I’d always thought of Frida as being rooted in her unique style of painting from the beginning of her career. This story reminded me that Frida had to push to find her voice. It took her time and effort to move out of Diego’s shadow.

Today’s celebration is of pushing through fear, no matter how small the steps. Put the paintbrushes on the desk, carry the sketchbook each day, pick up the nice camera. No matter what your medium, I hope you’re pushing through too.

…It’s late and I almost forgot about celebrating Denver. Hmmm. I’ll have to take an easy one tonight – the Denver Public Library. I know, it’s such a gimme, but it had to be included this month. I love the Central branch because I can walk there from work, but Smiley will always be my number one.

2 thoughts on “Forgetting fear, at least for a moment

  1. Hi Elise, I read about these 3 women today, and thought of you. You can read about them here:,0,7848176.story

    A quote from one of the women, Claire Sherman: “To have something else that feeds your experience is important…You may be looking at the same thing, but you’ve opened up a new possibility in relation to it.”

    Exploring the theme of celebrations, in relation to living in Denver, I think you are doing just that–looking at the “same place” you’ve been in a new light. You inspire me to do the same–thank you for that.

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