Saturday, August 19, 2006


Anna was the second Blue Rose Girl I met. As she wrote already, she, Grace and I were in a children's book class together at RISD. I was readjusting from a year in Rome and discovering I was failing with watercolor, my favorite medium. The next semester I would give it up altogether and embrace acrylic wholeheartedly, but that semester I was brooding about it.

In Rome the days were spent wandering the streets drawing from life. Back at RISD, captive in a small dirty white classroom, I was struck with Anna right away because of her fantastic face and peaceful demeanor. I preoccupied myself with drawing her during crits on the sly. I'm not sure I even knew her name for a while, and I don't think she ever caught on to what I was doing.

I didn't get to know her until years later by internet, when we started a listserv for RISD illustration grads, and eventually met again in person. It turned out I liked her as much as I liked drawing her. And though I'd always admired the classical sensibility of her assignment work, her professional illustration portfolio had become stunning in the short time since graduation. Her stoic little family of cats, foxes and mice live in suspended magic, drawn with a delicate and wonderfully self-confident hand, a rare combination just like Anna herself.

Grace, Anna and Meghan all have a consistent, unidentifiable spirit woven through the worlds they manifest on paper. I've known and looked at their work for so long, I wonder if it's evident to others how much I'm influenced by them.

I delayed this entry for so long looking for the pictures I drew of Anna 12 years ago. The dig uncovered dozens of sketchbooks and old inspirations I'm glad to find again, but Anna is eluding me. So I post without them before I'm in danger of proving my reputation for procrastination correct, and offer blue roses instead.


alvinaling said...

Oh, blue roses--where is the art from?

Linda S. Wingerter said...

I swiped it from somebody's myspace profile. :D

We needed some blue roses somewhere in this blog.

Anna Alter said...

Aw, thanks Linda, that is so sweet! I had no idea you sketched me in school.

Its so crazy that was 12 years ago... its been really interesting seeing everyone's work progress over all this time. I know very few people that are still working away at the same discipline they studied in school- I'm very grateful to have each of the blue rose girls as support and inspiration.