Mary Holmes Painting in Her Studio

I loved taking my young children to see Mary Holmes, a retired UCSC Art History professor, who lived at the top of a mountain just past “The Mystery Spot,” overlooking Happy Valley. Mary lived surrounded by animals and painted mythological subjects in a large barn. One day I called her to tell her we would visit and asked what she was working on. She said it was a painting about “Love.” When we arrived, Mary had just finished the underpainting in shades of red, and it was of “Judith Holding the Severed Head of Holofernes” with blood filling the six foot canvas. I was shocked and asked Mary, “…but I thought you said you were painting about Love?” and she replied, “Sometimes it doesn’t work out.”

Jim Hair started making photographs when he was ten at the NTC Hobby Shop in San Diego, California. Five decades later he is still making photographs of people and places and things that amaze him. www.jimhair.com