Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Patsy Cline re-visited

She has been one of my favorite singers for years, and I've drawn her several times in the past, for my own artistic pleasure:
The above was done with watercolor pencils in 2003, and has never appeared on my blog, as far as I know. Below, you can see my first digital painting ever, from 2007. Click here if you'd like to read how that came about.
This past weekend, the Significant Other and I visited relatives in western Virginia for Thanksgiving and decided to drive home the scenic way on Saturday instead of the interstate. When I realized that could take us past Winchester, Virginia, Patsy's childhood home and also where she is interred, we decided to pay her a visit... 
You can see the Shenandoah mountains in the distance from her gravesite, but they didn't show up too well in my photos. It seemed a serene resting place for her. The bell tower on the left was a gift from her fans, it plays hymns at 6 pm--the hour of her tragic death at age thirty in 1963.
So sad.... I took one of the oak leaves to put with my drawing of her.
Then it was on into downtown Winchester, to her teenage home where she learned to sing by playing records incessantly...
To our surprise, it was open for tours and we had gotten there just in time for one. Our docent, Joe, was very well-informed and personable. Photos were not allowed inside. Click below for lots of info and a short clip featuring Joe (whom I just found out, actually KNEW Patsy when he was a boy):
I actually started shaking in the living room when told that Patsy spent many an hour next to the fireplace listening and singing along to records or the radio, honing her skills so that one day she could do this:

While there, I bought a book called Patsy Cline: The Making of an Icon, by Douglas Gomery.  While I haven't had time to read it fully yet, I came across this passage, which really resonated with me as an artist:
I love the fact that sometimes my own personal interests coincide with those I admire. Drawing ability, like singing, is also a general characteristic of the human species---nearly every child draws. Those who don't give up either discipline become artists. :-)


  1. I really enjoy Patsy Cline's music also. Great post and painting Emily!

  2. Thanks Gabe! She was a true artist. So sad she left this world so young.