PAINT Shortage Endangers Artistic Community, Film at Eleven

A Valentine’s Day Art Show
Petticoats & Pistols
This is Venus, the Roman Goddess of Love and her son, Cupid, the Roman God of Love (Same last name? Who was the father? Already a scandal?)
I did a lot of reading about Cupid…
(translated to English…”that’s four hours of my life I’m never gettin’ back.)
With it in mind to talk about Cupid on Valentine’s Day Week.
I actually started out to talk about St. Valentine. Except, well, the information is shady about the real St. Valentine, mostly I got,
there were three Catholic priests named St. Valentine
(well, I suppose they were actually named just Valentine. The Saint came later, right?)
and they all died hideous deaths as martyrs,
soooo NOT the warm and romantic blog I had in mind.
So, the St. Valentine guys had a feast day which was on February 14th.
Also on February 14th (so the legend goes) birds picked their mates which somehow got mixed up with the god of love, namely Cupid.
(hang in there, I know how boring backstory can be)
So St. Valentine’s Day became connected to this pagan holiday which was for the birds. (okay, you KNOW I had to say that)
The birds mating is actually immortalized in a Chaucer Poem
called Parlement in Foules (Fowls??)
For this was on seynt Volantynys day
Whan euery bryd comyth there to chese his make.
(choose his MATE? maybe?)
Not MY typos, complain to Chauer.
Cupid is sometimes young,
There are BEES on that kid…what sadist painted that?
(I checked, Lucas Cranach the Elder about 1525-
I suppose it’s too late to file charges now)
Sometimes Cupid is dang near girly, (why, oh why doesn’t Dan Brown write a DaVinci Code about the ‘cover-up’ about Cupid being a girl??? Huh???–Nooooooooo he’s gotta go for Jesus being married. Well, fine, my next book is being outlined right now! Miss Cupid!)
But, boy or girl, child or adult, Cupid is all the time Nekkid.
What? Was there a colored paint shortage? 
Flesh tones were on sale?
An artist had to make do?
I’ll encapsulate four hours of reading here.
Psyche…no, that’s a person, not a mental illness…was pretty but conceited.
Venus…also conceited…sent her son Cupid to MESS HER UP.
Cupid fell in love instead.
Venus did some payback on poor old conceited Psyche
but Psyche was so beautiful that people kept rescuing her. (BEEN THERE)

 Finally Venus got control of her jealousy,

Psyche got over herself

(and put some clothes on, thank the Good Lord)

Cupid got the girl.

My gosh it’s just like one of my romance novels…

only with wings instead of a Stetson.

The end, cue the Godiva Chocolates, the Hallmark card industry 
and bring on

This, well, this is just disturbing, I’d need a paint roller and a gallon of Little Dutch Boy to get clothes on all these people. 
I’m sorry, I just don’t like people running around nekkid.
I never do it myself and don’t see why anyone else should get to. 
I know, it’s art. I’ve got a friend who’s an artist.
She’s talked me through it.
The reasons for nudes, the ART of it all.

Not buying it. Put some clothes on for heaven’s sake.

And that is the story of Valentine’s Day,

minus the slow agonizing death and graphic dismemberment

 of some Catholic Priests.

Enjoy your chocolates and hope and pray the roses don’t attract bees.

Gingham Mountain

Website | + posts

Author of Romantic Comedy...with Cowboys including the bestselling Kincaid Brides Series

73 thoughts on “PAINT Shortage Endangers Artistic Community, Film at Eleven”

  1. Hmm. Kind of funny! I still want to know more about the sketchy Saint Valentine stuff, though! Also, I wonder when kids at school, and lovers, started exchanging Valentine’s Day cards? My co-worker is from Jamaica and she said over there, the kids don’t exchange Valentines like they do in the States. It appears it’s a US tradition or something?

  2. Forgot to mention, your comment about your artist friend made me chuckle! My sister is an artist and when she was in art school, she told me that naked models would come into the classroom and they’d have to sketch them! Sometimes they’d be fast sketches, they wanted it done in a few minutes or so.

  3. What I love most is that all those nekkid bodies look normal! A little meat on ’em…not super model skinny. Oh that this would come back in vogue!! I could be a model! 😉

  4. Naughty pictures from the 1500s, don’t forget.

    If I’d have put up pictures from now, there’s be official people knocking on my door….and darn right they oughta be. Yikes!

  5. Oh, my, Mary. Naked pictures in Wildflower Junction . . . I’m grinning at the fun, but oh that poor child covered with bees.

    Thanks for an um, informative blog today!

  6. Mary, I’m just shocked at all the naked pictures on your blog today! Guess the times weren’t so different after all, were they, what with gender confusion. You know what Solomon said: There is nothing new under the sun. Ain’t it the truth?

    I have one of those pics with the naked flying cupids in my family room, and the kids are used to it now – I used to have to place a vase of flowers in front of the strategic parts.

    Thanks for a wonderful report on Valentine’s Day – your take is better than any I’ve ever heard.

  7. Well, I think I gave it the true reverence the day calls for.

    There isn’t a Catholic Holy Day now, attached to it. But apparently there used to be.

    If I really want to write a blog about the St. Valentine priests, yeesh, I’ll wait until Halloween, ghastly.

  8. Gosh, Mary, thanks — after all those naked pictures, I’m ready to write romance. Oh, wait, I write for CBA. Okay, back to the Bible to purge my mind. With my luck, I’ll open to Song of Solomon …

    Great blog, sweetie!


  9. You know, there’s actually a ‘birds and bees’ component to the day, based on the birds mating on February 14th and that little abused kid.

    And they ARE kind of round people aren’t they? I like that too, except for the nekkid-ness

  10. Sure glad nude portraits went out of style. Most of us look better with our clothes on.

    As always, Mary, you made me laugh.

  11. Good research, Mary, on what they did back in the olden days to ruin a little bit of love and romance in peoples’ lives today. The book The Two Babylons goes into even more detail about not only Valentine’s Day, but also Christmas and the goddess of ESTER, for Easter…also rabbits and eggs for fertility.

    I’m thankful most don’t think about VDay as a time to celebrate the past, but instead have a little bit of joy in sharing hearts and chocolates with their friends and loved ones today in sweet innocence.

    Your article was timely and eye opening, I’m sure for a lot of people.

    Aren’t you glad, so far, women aren’t running around like those in your pictures today! LOL
    Of course, it could be happening and we just don’t see it in our little world.

    I have to agree with your last comment. (A little fabric would have done us all a lot of good.)

    And those women weren’t even pretty!

    Blessings for a great day, Mary.


  12. You know, Shirley, think of this…everything I read was all about how stunning, amazing, breathtakingly beautiful Psyche was.

    Look at those pictures of her? Especially the one with the clothes on. The artist had to go looking for the most stunningly beautiful woman possible, I mean…RIGHT? That’s the whole idea.

    So does she seem that beautiful to you? I mean she’s okay but really kind of regular, plain even. But maybe the standards of beauty were really different. Hmmmmmm…..

    Audra, I’m glad you were inspired…to what? I can’t imagine….

  13. What a cute post! They do show a lot of naked bodies in art and they are taught this in art class. It doesn’t make a lot of sense because in life we always wear clothes.

  14. That is way too funny. Not the story necessarily, but the way you wrote it. You’re a hoot, Mary. But really, did you have to put all those nude pictures on here? I’m shocked! NOT!!!!

    I’m just glad that I don’t live in the 17th century and somebody painted my nude body. But then again, elephants weren’t popular back then, were they? hehehe

    Seriously…I know, I know…party pooper…hehe… No seriously, we think things have changed tremendously today. And they have. But then again, weren’t things always questionable? I mean look at those pictures and the stories behind them. Sounds like things I’ve heard on the news lately, eh? hehe

    I know a lady that her son, who was in the hospital at the time, asked her to bring him a dirty book. Needless to say he was shocked when his mother handed him the Bible. Yeppers…you heard me right…the Bible. She told him if wanted to read dirty stories, he could start with Sodom and Gomorrah. Venus and Cupid would fit right in there, eh?

    Ah, the lessons of life.

    Thanks for sharing your research with us, Mary. And for giving me a good laugh. But, Mary, put some clothes on those poor things. hehehehe Just teasin’.

    Luv ya bunches.

    From one nut to another.

    Debra Ullrick
    The Bride Wore Coveralls
    Déjà vu Bride
    Dixie Hearts

  15. The more I look at that painting the weirder it gets.

    Look at the guy in the darkened background under Venus’s elbow. He looks like a horror movie monster.

    The explanation of the painting is most insteresting for what it doesn’t know. Lots and lots of ‘maybe this’ ‘maybe that’ type comments.

  16. Hi, Quilt lady. I know just what you mean. My friend explained that you need to know how the body is put together, what is UNDER the clothes to make the clothes work….


    Then why not paint the body…the paint on some clothes??? Oh, wait, paint is FLAT, if you paint over the bodies it will be flat unless you make it look curvy.

    It’s all just bogus, that’s what.
    I’m going to go email my friend Karen and see if she can come over and give it all more illumination.

    I know, I’m a babe in the woods. Naive.

  17. Oh as usual you’ve got me laughing out loud, Mary. And I even studied clasical art. Most times the guys are clothed and the girls aren’t. Picnics. Walks in the wood. Go figure. But I have to get literary for a second. ALl this reminds me of a poem I studied in college and never forgot (even though that was the era when dinosaurs walked the earth. Go figure that, too. Yesterday I couldn’t even remember we ran out of coffee on Monday.)

    It’s a lyric from the Canzoni of Ezra Pound, about Psyche and Cupid’s, ahem, first time. “Oh winds, what wind can match the weight of him?” I just love tha that line.

    Have a good day. And keep making us laugh, dear.

  18. That is beautiful Tanya.

    I’ll add this detail about Cupid and Psyche. He went to her to shoot her with his love arrow, which caused people to fall hopelessly, eternally in love. Venus’ plan was for Psyche to fall eternally in love with the ugliest beast imaginable and thereby doom Psyche to a miserable fate.
    Well, Cupid got there fully intending to carry out his mother’s wishes but he was entranced by Pschye’s beauty and, while entranced, leaning in close to see her sleeping form in all it’s glory, he accidentally scratched HIMSELF with the arrow.
    So he fell hopelessly, eternally in love with Psyche.
    Then, there after, he’d come to her in the night when she couldn’t see him and be … ahem … WITH her. Lots more to it, Zeus finally made Psyche a Goddess.

    The end

  19. Chuckle, chuckle. And I am supposed to go to my life drawing class tonight, how ironic.
    In the painting world we call these folks ‘nude’ instead of ‘nekked’ But I will give you that ‘nekked’ is a cute word 🙂
    We all need to remember one fact here. God didn’t create us needing to put clothes on. Ha! And WHO was in charge of that detail?
    While I do appreciate clothing myself (I live in the coldest town in the three-state area, you know) learning to paint part of The Creation in an honest (and when I finally learn how, hopefully beautiful) way, does seem to have some merit.
    Ok, back to the studio. Today I am painting a glass of orange juice, thank you 🙂

  20. Mary,

    I’m so glad that I followed your link to this post. It is hilarious.

    My sister once took art lessons. She is somewhat of a prude and when the nude male model entered the room she almost had a heart attack. LOL

    Enjoy your day.

  21. Thanks, Mary, for an interesting post.
    I can always trust that I will get my
    chuckle of the day from whatever you
    are posting. Well, I certainly got my
    humor medicine from this one.

  22. I thought there was some sort of St. Valentine’s day massacre – or was that the mob. It could be referencing the rebellion from having to stand around nekkid – and why are they all so pale? I suppose this is the only time their skin ever saw the light of day. Except they act like they just wandered around nekkid all the time! Standing in shells and stuff.

  23. MY EYES, MY EYES!!!

    ( I hope you can read this, I laughed so much as I
    was typing this!!!)

    Thank God that someone got past the fig leaves and
    taught the world to make fabric! There are not that many bodies that could (or should!)walk around in a naked state! Babies are the only ones who should be seen NEKKID! Oh, thanks for the art

    Pat Cochran

  24. Kate, I SKIPPED about ten pictures that were even WORSE….ummmm…DETAILED you might say, good old cupid, if he’s a god, he must have a super power of always being warm.

    The breeze from his wings alone would be painful.

  25. Ah yes, Cooper (my artist friend and a genius)
    so always we go BACK to the Garden of Eden when we defend nekkid-ness. Except, you know, I’m lookin’ at these people posed just HOWEVER and thinkin’ no way would They get to stay in the garden, considering they’re behavior in front of the artist. (heaven only knows what they do in private) I’ll bet they’re apple eatin’ sons of guns.

  26. What do you suppose a nude model earns? I mean seriously, even if the money is pretty good, it’s not like they’re working a LONG shift.

    I’ll bet if you really penciled it out, MacDonalds pays more…and considering the splattering deep fat fryer, I’ll bet the managers insist you keep your clothes on for that job.

  27. I used to model in the Life Drawing class in college (again, in dinosaur time when I still had a figure) but it was a Lutheran college in Nebraska, and we had to wear bikinis. Which is good for me; I wouldn’t have done it nude. I got paid, I recall, always a good thing for a starving student.

    Thanks again for the hilarity. oxoxoxoxoxox

  28. Oh, man, Tanya, I was really going there.

    Rats! We got an artist to come out, I thought maybe we’d find a nude model.

    Cheryl? Pam? You guys paid for college this way, didn’t you????

    I have a recurring nightmare where I try to be a nude model and people keep paying me to, “Please, put your clothes back on!!!”

  29. This was great, Mary! I started college as an art major. At the University of Utah we did have nude models (no, not me). The women were totally nude and the men wore little, uh, loincloths. Go figure.

  30. P.S. I did pose in belly dance costume for the art staff at the company where I worked. It was really hard holding still all that time, and then getting back in the same pose after a break. Those models, nude or otherwise, earn every penny they’re paid.

  31. Mary looks like you made us all laugh today which is a good thing. I am glad that we all have cloths now I can’t image if we didn’t we would look very interesting. To put it one way!!!!!

  32. I love that you’re a belly dancer, Elizabeth. You’re my only belly dancing acquaintance.

    Although, as I get older, a case can be made that my belly sort of dances…quivers would probably be a better way to describe it.

    Still….not the same, I know.

  33. Hi, Deb.
    Yes, we think we’ve invented every new vice. Nope. Not even close.

    I think though, even in 1500 a woman could say no. I mean you didn’t HAVE TO POSE, Deb. You kinda made it sound like you thought it was required. LOL
    Rest assured, many women were allowed to veto the idea.

  34. That’s my kidn of painting, Maureen. Good for you.

    Hi, Estella, thanks for dropping by on Renaissance Artist Day, I’m sure everyone is more cultured than when they arrived.

  35. Dan Brown ain’t got Nothin’ on you Mary! I can’t wait to read your conspiracy novel about Miss Cupid. 🙂 Made me laugh so hard I almost coughed up a lung. Good post!

  36. Hi Mary,
    Chiming in late, hey I wrote 11 pages today, they just kept flying… don’t you love those days? Anyway, great pics and I too am amazied at how risque they are! Hope I got that word right.
    Funny post and timely!

  37. I’ve got conspiracy theories you wouldn’t believe, April.
    Example: You oughta hear who I think killed JFK. Yikes.

    In case you don’t know what Tanya is talking about, here is me on Love Western Romances
    Very cool to be features. Lots of the fillies have been on there, it’s a great site for lovers of western romance…thus the name.

    Hi, Missy. Thank heaven’s you were your own sweet self. If Missy tries to be sassy I have to listen to her apologize for WEEKS.

    Cheryl is up where, Brenda? Are we talking posing for an art class sans clothing or is this about that pole dancing thing??? 😀

    Eleven pages, Charlene…good for you. I got about six and was delighted, considering how many times I came of here to see what y’all made of my Cupid post.

  38. Mary, Thanks for an interesting post…not into all the nakedness but I guess art is art. Do we count the dash I make for the bedroom from the shower as running naked? Right now I would love to run anywhere but particularly from a shower as I broke my leg a week ago and cannot get around.

  39. Mary that post is so funny. I love it. I too did research on Valentine and found this years ago
    In third century Rome, an oppressive Roman emperor, Claudius IIordered all Romans to worship twelve gods and he made it a crime punishable by death to associate with Christians.

    Valentinus was dedicated to the ideals of Christ and continued to practice his ideal and beliefs. He was arrested and imprisoned. During the weeks of his imprisonment, the jailer saw that he was a man of learning and begged him to teach his daughter who was blind. Valentinius agreed to teach Julia. Valentinius read stories of Rome’s history, described the world of nature to her, taught her arithetic and told her about God. She trusted him and found comfort in his quiet strength.

    Julia asked many questions about God. She wanted to know if He really answered prayer. Valentinius assured her that God answers all prayers if you blieve in Him. Julia asked God if she could see. Valentinius knelt with her in the cell and suddenly it was filled with a bright light. Julia cried, “Valentinius, I can see.”
    Valentinus praised God

    On the eve of his death, Valentinus wrote a last note to Julia urging her to stay close to god and he signed it “From Your Valentine.”

    His sentence was carried out the next day, February 14, 270 AD near a gate that was later named porta Valentini in his memory. He was buried at what is now the Church of Praxedes in Rome. It is said that julia herself planted a pink-blossomed almond tree near his grave. Today, the almond tree remains a symbol of abiding love and friendship On each Feb 14th, St. Valentin’es Day, messages of affection, love and devotion are exchanged around the world.

  40. Delightful article and responses! What a fun idea, Mary! I wondered when Cupid had usurped St. Valentine’s Day. Maybe it was the other way around, since the church had a way of taking pagan holidays and christening them. Either way, bring on the chocolate! *grin*

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