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Picturing a World

Fidelia Bridges

Blog post alert: The female artist, Fidelia Bridges, was brought to my attention by a blog post, A Method for Painting Botanical Subjects on Location. In a thirteen-minute video, James Gurney demonstrates his method of painting a blurry landscape, blowing it up to place at a distance from his easel, and then working on the actual canvas to paint a detailed botanical image of a milkweed plant in the foreground. I found it fascinating to watch, and it's interesting that he learned the method of combining two ways of seeing in one canvas from a 19th C woman.

There is no equivalent method for writing a story. Yet detailed action does need to occur against a broader setting, and it's part of the writer's craft to get the balance right.
Fidelia Bridges was not a great artist, but she was a good one. And she made a living as a professional. Few ever do, and certainly few women did in her time. She bears investigation!

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