Today's post is a little different in that it's just a Monday Morning post, not a Monday Mourning. :) It comes from Cindi Zimmerman who wrote me about her mom, Virginia Lipke also know as Tiny.
It's never too late, no excuses! My mother, Virginia Lipke, is the most inspiring person I know. Better known as "Tiny" to her friends, at the age of 85 she fearlessly started painting and by 86 she participated in her first art show and sold her first painting.
Ironically, one of her brothers was the iconic artist/illustrator Bob Peak. You may not know that name, but I guarantee you've seen his work on movie posters (Star Trek, Apocalypse Now, Camelot....the list is endless) and countless magazine covers like Time, Newsweek and TV Guide. But back to Tiny....
She shares many a story of watching her brother paint when she was a wee girl, and although she was a creative her entire life (from sewing, to cake decorating, to making greeting cards), it never occurred to her to pick up a paintbrush. Tiny was busy with life, raising 9 children (yes, nine), and is now a grandma X 15 and a great grandma X 8.
It wasn't until Tiny's youngest child (that's me) started painting a couple years ago that Tiny decided to give art a try. I was a bit frustrated with my own painting and commented to mom that (at age 44) maybe it was too late for me to start. Ha! It's never too late, she said...and as she's done so many times in my life, she proceeded to lead by example. Now she pushes paint around like a boss, and unleashing her untapped talent has breathed new life into her. But only because she wasn't afraid to try.
Mind you, Tiny has had her share of challenges. Born at the onset of The Great Depression, her mother's death when she was barely 5 years old, burying her husband when he was only 59, battling cancer when she was 75, two spinal surgeries, losing a son to a heart attack a couple years ago, and struggling with her own declining health and aging...none the less, Tiny always wears a smile, finds the positive in every situation, makes no excuses, and accepts every challenge. She makes friends wherever she goes and although she lives in Wichita, KS, she's a member of Studio 7 in Rogers, AR, and God willing, she'll be participating in Art on the Creeks for the second year in a row come October!
She's my hero.
I have sort of a thing for late bloomers so of course I loved the story of Tiny. She's definitely a hero. I can't wait to meet her, perhaps at Art on the Creeks in October.