The subject is inspired by the song One by One from 1954 by the obscure folksinger/ songwriter, Connie Converse. To me, her tender song is a haunting reminder of the under- recognized female creators of the past. Her song Trouble is another gem that holds up against time. Like Molly Drake (listen to Happiness), her recordings needed to be “discovered” posthumously and dusted off by a man before being brought to light. The palette for my painting is drawn from Edwin Dickinson’s portrait of Helen Souza from 1929. I’ve always admired how simply he was able to capture moonlight. The cool blue and silver tones evoke the same ghostly qualities as Ms. Converse’s songs and so felt like a fitting match.
Edwin Dickenson (1891–1978) Helen Souza, 1925 Olja på pannå, 91,4x76,2 cm (The Regis Collection, Minneapolis)