A story by Karen Jelenfy from 2004-2017
My relationship with Maine has been a turbulent one. I came here as a middle-class wife, mother, teacher and artist in 2004. Now I'm no longer any of those things - only the artist has survived.
I am an older woman struggling to make ends meet. I paint and draw every day. I work seasonal jobs because that's all that is available to me despite my experience and education. I panic every winter, trying to afford the wood that heats my modest house. I am sinking slowly every year.
I can choose to make this struggle beautiful or ugly. In this painting, I chose beauty.
Although I am too poor to leave, I sometimes achieve escape velocity in my work.