Charles Kapsner Painting Visit


February 23rd 2022 from Charles

Hey JoyGenea,
Since you would be walking in the door right now here is where things are at. Needless to a say very tedious! I am having a great time!
We are completely snowed in at the county road level; I suspect tonight they may plow it. We have to keep the snow blower going to stay ahead of the game. How does tomorrow or Friday look for you? I have someone here late Thursday afternoon.

JoyGenea Notes from Meeting

When the snow finally stopped and Charles was able to be plowed out of his home. I was headed home from the Women’s Pitch Event in Brainerd and stopped in.

As you enter his studio the smells greet you first. It is the smell of his paints and turpentine. It isn’t very strong, I just have a strong nose and catch it. He had music playing, a little eight’s techno beat type of thing, softly in the background. You step into the studio on a platform, because the studio is below ground to bring in the best light. I stepped onto the platform and took a couple of moments to refocus myself. I took a few deep breaths, shook off the rest of the day, and got centered on my dad and Charles’s progress. Charles greeted me and invited me to come over and see the progress.

I took a video as he explained what the next steps in the process are and what he had been working on. To see the lines forming on the actual canvas has a new feeling. He explained the process of adding those outlines of the objects and getting the proportions correct. The amount of time and labor is more than you realize. I also understand enough about the process to know that the foundation is what makes or breaks the finished product.

While going over the painting and my work on naming the piece and its story I had a new observation. This whole process is really a deconstruction and reconstruction of the person I call my father. I have literally touched most of the possessions he owned when we went through his house preparing it for sale and I learned about his priorities and his coping strategies. This is a different examination. More of a step into the moment in his life that totally changed it all and how he took himself from that place through the rest of his life. In deconstructing it, I feel like I have been able to get down to the core parts of his existence and that allows me to focus on those and find them running throughout his life.

I can really see how this process of working with Charles and creating this painting together is the largest part of my grieving. It is giving me the space and time to really work through and with the grief to transition into the next chapter without my parent. It is a shift to have the person that was a stable, loving, grounded and constant in my life, gone. There is a void, but with him, you don’t notice the void often, but when I do, it feels like a really deep hole, I don’t want to get too close to or I will fall into it.

Tomorrow I will be headed off to a TAPS Grieving seminar in Jacksonville Florida and there will be another shift in me at this time. I am going to be adding more people to my story of healing and growth.

I will be sharing with them my story and my journey and my painting. I can’t wait. I am so excited.