In the Hills of Arkansas

Gold Medal - Master Signature Division   "Crazy Quilt"      David Hettinger OPAM $7,000   14" x 14"

Gold Medal - Master Signature Division
"Crazy Quilt"  David Hettinger OPAM
$7,000 14" x 14"

I recently won a gold medal with my painting "Crazy Quilt.” It’s nice winning a gold medal, but the painting itself is the real reward for me. Just about every painting I create is, in itself, a reward for me. It was the time spent with Jordan that inspired the painting. She’d be trying to study with me asking questions in an effort to get to know her better. She’d fiddle with the plants on my windowsill as she answered my questions. I can get quite inquisitive when painting. I'm sure Jordan would have preferred I had kept quiet, with a test scheduled for the next day. I did try to keep quiet but her life was so different than the lives of most models... 

The crazy quilt, her books, the lighting coming in the window, all took on more meaning the more she told me about her life. I pictured her in the hills of Arkansas swinging from a rope dropping into the crystal clear waters of everyone's favorite swimming hole. Racing for shore when someone yelled "Cotton Mouth!", a poisonous snake that is an excellent swimmer. Not much scares Jordan, but snakes do. Still she posed at ponds here, baring hundreds of bug bites, so I could get my painting.

There is always more to a painting than a pretty girl with a great smile and great legs. A friendship develops through the process of creating art, not so much with a still-life. I usually eat my still-lifes when finished with the painting...

I've won several awards, all with figurative pieces and all with models who have inspired me with who they are inside.