Short Letters

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‘I would have written you a shorter letter, but I did not have the time’ – Pascal 1656

I found this quote a long time ago. When I write someone a letter, I write pages and pages, wanting to get all the details of my life onto that page so they can feel what it’s like to be me; where I am, what I am doing, what the air feels like around me. But what if all we had was one page? What if we took the time to boil it all down to just a few words? How would we express ourselves and our relationship to this person and all their friendship means to us, in just a few words? I have decided to take the time. I have been writing Short Letters, based on this idea. Painting each line, I give myself the space to write only the most minimum of words. In preparation, I write pages and pages. Trusting that the four or five words I need will find their way out of the multitude.

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Each one has a specific person in mind. I visualize the words on the paper as I paint each line. I visualize this person reading the words as I stencil each of their letters in. I have notebooks full of these ‘short letters’, further editing my words, so only those that continually ring true make it onto the final product. One letter requires a lot of time. Time to think, time to feel, time to know.

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