Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Bentleyville Day 4



This one is my grandfather, Walter. I wish I knew more about him. He worked at the steel mill in Allenport. Liked to fish. Always took the bus (back then there were buses in our town! It's hard for me to believe as it has almost no public infrastructure of any kind anymore!) He was a bootlegger during prohibition, which I never knew until my grandmother died because she didn't allow anyone to talk about it. My grandmother never had a drink in her life. What a weird match. When he was ailing with congestive heart failure, he repeatedly removed himself from his IV, and thus the outcome was decided. I'm not "all for it" or anything, but as I'm painting his smiling face, I'm a little bit impressed. He drew the line, said "this is when it's worth it, and this is when it's not". I hope he had fun. It looks like he did.

9 comments:

Rebecca Anthony said...

It looks to me like you pulled out his character. These figures are pulling together beautifully!

My name is PJ. said...

Your grandfather sounds like a wise man who stuck by his convictions. I have nothing but admiration for that.

5thsister said...

I know people like your grandfather (working in the health care industry). What I find distressing are those families who refuse to respect their wishes. Loving the warm smile and happiness you have rendered in his warm, loving face!

Betty (picture circa 1951) said...

This is coming along so well. I love old photos and this group photo is great choice for a painting. I had a great uncle that was a bootlegger. He was running from the cops when his truck crashed and he was killed.

Kass said...

Immediately when I saw this face, I thought, "What quirky humor he has."
And this was before I knew he was your grandfather.

Sue said...

You grandfather's face shows a lot. You seem to be very good at making the people come alive.

=)

Marc Greisinger aka "Alex the Goon" said...

Love how this is coming along, the progression is great.

Viki said...

How neat to find out your grandpa was a bootlegger. What a time he must have had and the stories he could have told. I notice in the picture, he's one of the one's smiling the biggest. There's something about knowing when the time comes and doing something about it that makes him so brave to me.

Jo said...

what interesting history ... and the painting is really interesting ...