Monet dominated my thoughts as made my way to Mount Congreve Garden yesterday. I knew the water lilies would be in full bloom and they were.
I have had a passion for art since I was very young. I think it was probably ignited by my father who brought me to the art galleries in Dublin from the time I was a tot. He was the person who introduced me to Great Artists, like Monet, Renoir, Van Gogh ….. but there was another person who gave me a love of painting.
Her name was Miss Barrett and she was my art teacher in Secondary School. I absolutely adored Thursday afternoons in First Year, especially, as we had a whole hour and a half of art with Miss Barrett and this came after a hellish morning grappling with subjects that were beyond me.
Miss Barrett seemed ‘old’ then; I suspect she was probably in her early 50s, if that! She knew how to inspire and encourage and had a motherly gentleness that always made me feel that happy, secure comfortableness that is often so elusive.
I didn’t have a natural flair for drawing or painting but Miss Barrett wanted all her pupils to enjoy art and to experiment without fear.
The happiness of Thursday afternoons descended on me in Mount Congreve yesterday and I felt like Miss Barrett was walking with me.
I doubt Miss Barrett ever knew how much those classes meant to me and I deeply regret that I never even thought to thank her.
How I’d love to take up art again and find a teacher with Miss Barrett’s wonderful traits.