Tuesday, November 01, 2011


"Green Rain, Lake Erie"
8" x 10"
Oil on RayMar Linen Panel
Copywrite 2010 Debra Joyce Dawson

I was pleased to hear that I sold this painting recently
at the Eisele Gallery in Cincinnati!
The link is to my page on their site if you want to see what other works are exhibited there at this time.

I painted this during last year's OPAS Plein Air Competition,
but I didn't enter it.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

All the world's a stage!

Three views of the stage at the Festival Theatre.
At the top, the stage for Shakespeare's Twelfth Night.
The play started with a rowboat (on wheels) moving through the fog delivering Viola from a violent storm at sea to the fantasical land of Illyria. Lots of props came and went, and great use of the trap door in this production always makes for theatrical magic!

Ah, the set for Moliere's The Misenthrope.
Except for a few upholstered stools, not much changed on stage in terms of props and scenery. The costumes were magnificent, as was the acting, and the translation from the original French into English verse was superb! If only we all had the ability to throw insults with such wit and rhyme.
Widely hailed as Moliere's masterpiece, the play opened in Paris in 1666, with the author playing the lead role of Alceste. His wife played Celimene, the female lead.

And finally, the set for Lerner and Loewe's Camelot.
The tree sat on a rotating piece of the stage. Other props came and went, usually as actors came and went, but the tree was onstage for throughout most of the play. Near the beginning, a live hawk swooped down and across the audience to sit on Merlin's hand who stood at the middle of the stage. The audience loved it!
In 1967, my parents took myself and my best friend to see Camelot, the movie, starring Richard Harris as King Arthur. In the mid-80's, I had the pleasure to see the play, starring Harris, live in Washington D.C. I sat in the front row, Harris appeared out of a tent, in tights, walked to the front of the stage and sat on the edge, right in front of me. A strong memory!
Yesterday, we returned to Columbus after 7 hours in the car. We drove straight to the Drexel Theatre to see The First Grader. A must see movie, based on a true story of a man in Kenya who goes to school at the age of 84. He died in 2009 at the age of 89.

Today, the gym crept back into our lives, and errands, before attending the final performance of Follies at The Garden Theatre in the Short North of Columbus. What a magnificent job the actors did! And a super ending to Martin's vacation.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Balzac's Paintings

Many hours have been spend in this coffee shop.
Martin works on his crosswords, and I work on my sketchbook,
and finally on this trip, I have completed two small oil paintings.

My 8" x 6" oil from Wednesday.
I worked on it a little more today, and and it's not finished,
but I figured I'd post it.

Me yesterday, trying to speed up the drying time of my watercolor.
I loved the look of the gals servicing coffee in Balzac's. They dress in black, and make great shapes. I got out the watercolors and just painted their shapes in my sketchbook, in preparation for going back today to paint them from an angle looking down the length of the coffee bar.

I was lucky that the same two girls were there today and wearing the same outfits!
 I did another watercolor painting today before starting the oil below. I wish I lived closer to this Coffee Shop, not only for the great coffee, but for the wonderful opportunities to paint these scenes.

Another 8" x 6" oil.
I will post the watercolor sketch tomorrow.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

A Painting Day

Wednesday morning in the Shakespeare Gardens.
It was cold, very windy, and rainy.
Yesterday after breakfast, we hit the road with my backpack, pochade box and some small panels. We weren't going to see any plays on that day, so there was all day to paint. The weather was blustery and cold; and, who knew when the predicted rain would start?

I had on a couple of shirts, and a warm headband, but the wind went right through my shirts, and the top of my head felt cool. I donned a winter hat and a rain slicker that I'd bought in the Peak District of England some 10 years before. The slicker doesn't breath, making it great protection from the wind, but it is waterproof for only about 15 minutes if it's raining hard. Luckily, I found a glove in each pocket.

Even with gloves, my fingers were numbed by the cold. I took off a glove
in an attempt to try and feel the palette knife I was holding.
Not long after I got set up, we felt the first rain drop. It didn't rain hard, but it did build up to a steady slow misty drizzle. Between the cold, the wind and the soft rain it was getting hard to paint, so I packed it all away saying I'd clean up the edges when I could feel my fingers again.

We went for a hot drink which turned into lunch.
For me a hot bowl of lentil vegetable soup
at the York Street Cafe.

I made a quick sketch of my dessert,
a butter tart in the shape of a swan. Yummy stuff.

Next, back to Balzac's Coffee, where I finally realized my desire to paint inside the cafe. I wasn't sure that I would get a decent painting in there. The lights are dim and yellow. I decided to do some sketches and familiarize myself with the girl and the objects that were in front of me before attempting to paint. Once into the painting, it was hard to tell what colors I was truly mixing. I worked on an 8" x 6" panel, featuring one of the barristas behind the counter. I still have not seen the painting in good light, but I got several compliments from customers that were sitting near me, and Martin gave it a thumbs up.

We walked back to Looking Glass House in the rain. I enjoyed a hot shower, dressed and did some reading and writing in my book before we drove to the Raja Indian Restaurant where we enjoyed a fabulous dinner.

Van Gogh in the news again

Always newsworthy Van Gogh continues to intrigue and be a moneymaker for some.
This short article in the October 18, 2011 Toronto Star, concerns a book written by two Pulitzer Prize winning authors and their new book, Van Gogh, The Life.

I did some research after reading this article and found these links to the 60 minutes interviews and a third video with paintings and readings from Van Gogh's letters. If you like Van Gogh, these 60 Minutes videos are worth watching!
Life and Death of Van Gogh Part 1
Life and Death of Van Gogh Part 2
60 Minutes Overtime - with commentary, paintings and letters of Van Gogh

Here's a quote from Google Books concerning the new book:  "Though countless books have been written about Van Gogh, and though the broad outlines of his tragedy have long inhabited popular culture, no serious, ambitious examination of his life has been attempted in more than seventy years. Naifeh and Smith have re-created Van Gogh's life with an astounding vividness and psychological acuity that bring a completely new and sympathetic understanding to this unique artistic genius whose signature images of sunflowers and starry nights have won a permanent place in the human imagination."

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Audio/Visual & Gastronomique Overload

Drinking a bowl of Cafe au Lait in Balzac's Coffee in Stratford, Ontario

Apple pancakes and Canadian bacon lovingly cooked by Jean
at the Looking Glass House B&B.

The latest version of the Yarka watercolor set, now marketed by Jack Richeson Company.
 I am not sure, but the colors themselves seem to be the same as
those in my older Yarka set. But you can see that the half pans
don't stay put in this new packaging. Frustrating.

Balzac's Cafe Latte (large size) and my sketchbook
always a work in progress!
A forbidden photo of the inside of the Festival Theatre.
I snuck this photo not long after we were seated for the performance of Twelfth Night. There were 1400 high school students at this sold out performance. They were a well behaved audience, and the applause at the end was thunderous. I am always amused by the sounds the kids make when there is an onstage kiss, or when at the end of this performance, Count Orsino tells Cesario (after it's revealed that Cesario is really Viola, a girl pretending to be a boy) that she will be his mistress. Elizabethan audiences would have known that Orsino meant she would be his wife, but the kids thought something different.

A glass case in the hallway held an exhibition on wig making.
It's always fun to walk through the halls of the theatre. On display there will routinely be designer sketches of the current season's costumes and sets. Mannequins will be wearing past costumes with photos of actors wearing that costume in a past performance. This year, I was happy to see a display case featuring wig making. I cannot imagine the patience and dedication it takes to be a wig maker. All those knots to tie!!!

A wig in progress.
A view of the net that the wig maker attaches the hair to.

My humble sketch, just a memory for my book.
We were a bit early for the performance, so while we waited I did a ball point pen contour drawing of the long wig, my favorite, since it looked so French, and later I added the watercolor later from memory.

I won't even go into dinner.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Back in Stratford, Ontario

We are comfortably installed in Looking Glass House, our favorite B&B in Stratford, Ontario. The link is the the Canadian B&B site, but Looking Glass House has it's own website. I just can't find it quickly enough here. I like to book directly from Jean, to save her paying extra fees to booking agencies.

So why are we here again?
(Wow, the colors here remind me of the T-shirt
I bought at the Bluebird Cafe in Nashville, TN last year.)
Martin, who has been working non-stop this past year, except for 5 days off in June to go to the Publisher's Invitational 'Paint the Adirondacks' event, needed a vacation. I encouraged him to ask for time off or the year would end, and he'd never get it. He chose to come back to Stratford and the Shakespeare Festival, which we both enjoy tremendously.

We drove up yesterday, but our day started with a 7:30am trip to our trainer, Charlie. What a great guy he is. Charlie is our second trainer, the first being the infamous Brad, who kicked our bodies for at least six months before moving on to become a fireman. Brad had some great sayings, like "Pain is our friend. When no one else around, pain is still with us." And one day when he was five minutes late, he said, "I am late, so you will be punished!" Brad was quiet, but effective, and we loved him. It was hard to think how we would adjust to another trainer, but Charlie has won our hearts.

Charlie has an Masters in Nutrition and Fitness from Ohio University, and for his young years, he has had some major health issues involving surgery and several reconstructive surgeries. He is more outgoing than Brad, just aquired a cat (named Bentley), and at times I come away from the workout feeling that he wasn't too hard on us. Then later our friend, Pain, shows up; but, not as often as before. So Charlie is either easier on us, or we are in better condition.

Header image for homepage
The Topiary Park, Columbus OH.
The creation of sculptor James Mason
fashionged after Georges Seurat's painting.
After the workout, we drove into Columbus, OH, where I have been teaching a 7-week class in plein air painting. The class met in the Deaf School Park. I copied the above photo from the website. After painting for 4 weeks (3 of them in the rain with students sequestered under the new Main Street Bridge), the promise of a sunny day had me wanting to get the students out to a location where they could work with green and strong light and shadow. Everyone was thrilled to get into this park and work with amorphic shapes rather than the hard-edged city.

Once class was over, Martin and I stopped at the two large art supply houses in the area. The first was Utrecht, not far from the park. I bought one panel for painting, just 4 x 4". I need to paint some miniatures for two different shows. For one of the shows, the painting and frame can't be larger than 40 sq. in. This is even small for me! I needed more panels, so we stopped at Blick Art Supply on the way out of the city, and two of my students were there shopping.

They were looking for palette knives and asked which was the closest to what I use, the Lowe-Cornell J-2. Blick doesn't sell that brand, but we found the Blick #57 to be about the same. I was happy to learn that as well. And after lunch next door, we hit the road for the 6 hour drive to Stratford.

As the crow flies, Stratford is straight north of Columbus, but we drove to Toledo, Detroit, crossed the border at Port Huron, and then over dark, dark, roads of southern Ontario, to arrive in Stratford around 9:00 PM. We went straight to Bentley's. Martin had a Steak and Mushroom Pie, just to get in touch with his roots. He'd have liked a Steak and Kidney, but . . .

I went straight to bed, and we were both awakened at 7:00 AM by an alarm in another room. He got up to turn it off, but said the door was locked. He just hadn't turned the handle far enough.

Breakfast was a wonderful plate of apple pancakes and Canadian bacon with real maple syrup. Fresh fruit, carrot and nut muffins, butter, yogurt, orange juice, and coffe and tea. Been a while since I'd eaten some of this stuff, but it is always great. Jean delights her clients each morning with a delicious breakfast, and that why Martin loves this place. Jean also always has the written versions of all the plays that the Festival is presenting that season. Although there is a TV and CD player, we don't bother to turn them on. We read, and now, she has this wireless connection, so I don't have to drag my laptop to Balzac's Coffee.

Now, I'll just take a leisurely stroll to Balzac's for a large cafe au lait!

Today at 2:00 PM we see Shakespeare's Twelfth Night. It was written between 1599 and 1608, for Queen Elizabeth I. Quoting from Norrie Epsteins's Friendly Shakespeare, "Twelth Night is named for a holiday, about love and grief, their pains and their pleasures, and how the two emotions are often indistinguishable. Twelfth Night is festive, but it also skirts madness, dispair, sexual ambiguity and cruelty."

It also has one of my favorite characters, Malvolio!!! Quoting David Jones, "Malvolio's final cry of 'I'll be revenged on the whole pack of you!' casts an even longer shadow over the play as it is going to have its answer 40 years down the line when the Puritans come to power in England and every theatre in London is shut down."

Here is a link to quotes from the play. During this same period he wrote Troilus and Cressida, Hamlet, Othello, Measure for Measure, King Lear, Macbeth, Coriolanus, and Antony and Cleopatra. WOW!!!!!

I'm sure that Olive Oil would say,
"Shakespeare, what a man, what a man."

Saturday, October 08, 2011

The Shabby Side of the Short North Lights Up!

The newly restored 'Garden' sign, minutes before it was lit for the first time in 32 years.
October 1st was the date for Ohio Plein Air Society members to come to the northern most block of the Short North, in Columbus, and create paintings of the facade of the old Garden Theatre, now The Short North Stage.

It was drizzly, and breezy, and chilly.

Edie Dean painting. I really wanted the LOTTERY sign lit up in this photo.
That combination makes for a sometimes miserable artist. But it was perfect weather for the seedier side of the Short North. Edie Dean was at work when I arrived, but we had already 'phone commed' a few times before I hit town.

As I reported for duty, Edie said, "This guy says we can set up under his awning." It was a liquor store, and at 9:30 AM there were a legion of thirsty customers passing through the door. It took me some time to settle in and get things going. I'd been out the night before at a Greek restaurant. Wine, belly dancing and song made for a fun-filled evening. But now, the reality of the task at hand was before me.

I slowly got my equipment gathered and to the sidewalk. I made two quick sketches to help me decide the size and shape of the canvas I'd work on. I'd toured this theatre two weeks prior to Saturday, and to make a long story short, fell in love with it, as did the two gentlemen that are making it's restoration and rebirth a reality.
The "GARDEN" sign was being re-lit on Saturday evening at 9:00 PM, an historic moment, not only for the theatre, but also for this shabby neighborhood.

But my job on that day was to depict it on canvas.

It seemed to take me a long time to get started. Was it fear, or thinking and planning? I'd like to say say it was the latter, but I believe it was a bit of both. I was spoiled for choice on the selection of canvas size for my painting. What I settled on was a 20" x 10" stretched canvas that had been hiding in my studio for the longest time. I'd forgotten that my easel only accommodates the height of a 16" canvas. So now, I had to take even more time, scooping up and moving down the large globs of oil paint that I'd just squeezed out into their usual spots at the top of my palette. In their place, I rested the bottom my the canvas.
Near the end of the painting a steady drizzle forced me
to move my easel forward under the awning.

It felt good to be painting. There was a sort of buzz in the air. The promise of the day, and the evenings event, but there was something more. Many were anticipating that afternoon's OSU game with their greatest rival, Michigan, and I knew that I was attending the opening of the Short North Stage and the re-lighting of The Garden Theatre sign!

What I didn't know was that a real life drama would come to me outside the walls of the theatre, in the form of a man named Jack, not his real name.
Jack crossed the street on the way to the store, and saw two artists. He stopped by Edie's easel first, and she kindly sent him to me. He liked what I was doing, and we started to banter back for what I thought would be a few minutes at most. I guess he was having a good a time jive talking with me, cause he wound up standing at either side of me for at least two hours!

Somehow, he got to telling me that his mother lived in New York, and that he had been a singer there. Right down my alley, since I had been a singer for a long time.
Jack sang "Superstar" and customized it for Edie and I.
We stood on the street, me painting, him singing,
sometimes singing together.

 How I painted anything, I am not sure. 

Jack was no stranger to bars, in any of their forms; he'd kicked life, and been kicked around by it; but, he still had his talent. And on this day, we connected on a human level, through our mutual love of music. Here I had a seasoned yet rusty singer right there on the street entertaining me while I painted! We started to talk about our favorite songs. He said he'd been a jazz singer, and had all the right lingo, and a voice that isn't as apparent in the video posted here. I believed every word that this nightingale told me.

I offered him $20.00 in exchange for the entertainment. I can still hear the warm tone in his voice when he later said, "Deb, why did you give me that money? You didn't have to do that." I replied, "I gave it to you for the songs that you gave to me. You can give it back if you want to." "No," he said thoughtfully, "I need it." I had to laugh to myself. We had connected pretty deeply. He was very open with me about his life. Some of what he told me resonated on a personal level; some of what he said I'd seen first hand in my own family. My time with him enriched me, made me feel less judgemental. Jack had a story, and good one, but I can't tell it properly without his permission.

All the while, people walking north to the OSU tailgate parties sometimes stopped to talk, or admire my painting, and one of them happened to be a photographer from the Columbus Dispatch. He asked if he could take some photos of me painting. But first he took photos of me and Jack, and Jack by himself. Then he wanted Jack to move to the side so he could photograph the painting. Jackie wasn't too happy about that, and by the time the photographer had finished, the songbird had vanished into thin air! No goodbyes.

Here's a link to Ty Wright's photo that appeared
in the October 4th Dispatch.

Monday, September 12, 2011

New Series: "27 Dresses"

Late afternoon on Saturday, I was painting on
High Street in the Short North of Columbus, OH.
I talked to some very nice folks while painting that afternoon. One of these folks was also a photographer. He was polite enough to ask me if he could take some photos,
and I asked if he'd send them to me.
His name is Ronell Jones.
Ron, thanks so much for the great photos of me painting the dresses.

Saturday was one of the dates that was scheduled as a paintout day for the Ohio Plein Air Society's upcoming 10th Year Anniversary Exhibition at the Springfield Museum of Art.
The first time I went out to paint in the Short North for this exhibition, the thing that spoke to me was the wedding dress shop.
"White Wedding" by Debra Joyce Dawson Oil ~ 6" x 12"
"White Wedding", 6" x 12", Oil on Panel
Copyright 2011 Debra Joyce Dawson

That was April 30th, just a few days after the royal wedding took place. Yes, I did watch the entire thing, and I can only think that that was part of the inspiration that day.
But it could have just been that I was tired of painting landscape, and this was like painting people, only they didn't move at all.
Still, at the August paintout in Milford, OH, the trend continued when I painted a jewelry store window because it was the best thing I saw that day! In the window were two child-sized manikins dressed in home-made tutu's.
The green tutu was made of a chartreuse feather boa,
and the pink one was out of a net fabric.
The little hands at the bottom were sporting jewelry.

"Too, Too", 12" x 10", Oil on Museum Board
Copyright 2011 Debra Joyce Dawson
Thanks to Martha Carmody for the
above photo of my painting on the easel.
And thanks to my buddy Edie Dean for the title!
Where would this gal be without her friends?

The colors, shapes and textures of the tutu's were irresistible,
and even though I did try to get away and paint that Miami River,
I just couldn't do it.
This window worked its magic on me.
So after that second painting, I made the decision
to do a series named after the movie
"27 Dresses".
As I painted the third in the series, a man walked by me, saying as he passed me the second time, "Always a bridesmaid, never the bride?", and a dress disappeared from the window and reappeared later, like magic! I never saw it go or come back, I only missed it when I went to define that area of my painting.
The public is delighted with these paintings, and they seem to lead to lots of conversations on the street; five artists stopped at my easel on Saturday to talk, and to tell me what I was doing right or wrong; and one of them decided that she liked that subject so much that she too needed to paint this window. So the cat is out of the bag now.
I was trying to keep my dresses in the closet for a while, but not now.

And what a joy to have friends with cameras and titles!
Thanks again Ron, Martha and Edie.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

A Porky Day

Yes, that is a roasted pig head in the case.

This man is my hero. He was at the market both of the Tuesdays that I was there. He sold roasted pork! As my Mom used to say, "pork, my favorite meat." Now, if you have reasons for not eating pork, that is your problem, but not mine. My problem was getting close enough to this guy to get a bite. His porchetta stand was always packed. I just stood from afar and took photos. I could never get a good one of him as the bar of the counter was always right in the middle of his face, even when he stopped working for a fraction of a moment so I take get his photo.

The first time I saw him, there was an entire roasted body of a pig around 5 months old, head and legs removed, but skin intact! It was a hugh piece of roast pork that he sliced from. On this second Tuesday, we arrived at the market later in the morning, and he had already sold about 3/4 of this new carcass, sending away might happy customers.

I just took more photos and said to myself, "that must be really good for these folks to line up as they do." 'The Prochetta Man' cut per order, placing the meat on a piece of butcher paper. His customers could also tell him if they wanted some crispy skin, or some of the stuffing that was inside the pig. His assistant weighed the meat and took the money, and Porchetta Man just kept slicing. They also made panini sandwiches.

I just watched, and wondered. I walked away several times, and as I walked away for what i knew would be the last time in my life, I said to myself, "Are you nuts? You LOVE pork, and you are dying to know just how good this is. GO TRY IT!" So I got in line. When I got to about number three in line, I could see the sign on the glass saying what he sold along with the prices. I had no idea, except that they sold a sandwich.

Now next up at bat, he asked me if I wanted a panini. I said "no," made the 'small gesture' with my thumb and index finger and said, "picolo". He understood me, smiled, and sliced a piece of meat, rolled it and placed it in a napkin and handed it to me, free of charge with a big smile.

I walked away with the morsel and popped the entire thing in my mouth all at once. It was truly a little slice of heaven! Succulent, perfectly seasoned, and melted in my mouth. It was worth the wait, and just enough for an exquisite memory.

Later that day, we were off to Orvieto. We went to see the Duomo, but not far from the parking up a narrow street, this is what we came to.
A wild boar head trophy.
I just had to get my photo with it.
If you could see it, you would know that the charm on the necklace I am wearing is a pig, given to me by my granddaughter for Christmas some years ago now. I love pigs, ever since I met the pink pigs that my brother-in-law was keeping. They had such personality, and intelligence, and they stood and posed for me while I recorded my first pig drawings in a sketchbook. Fun stuff!

Below is a photo of this large boar
and the man that took the trophy.
Look at the size of it!!!
It could have killed him I suppose with those tusks.

 Above is the profile shot!
And below, much later I came across this tile sign.
Made me smile, and reminded me of the end of the movie 'Fargo'!
If you've seen it, you know what I mean.
 And on my last day in Italy, in Perugia,
here were images of boars on a very fine and famous fountain.

Who knew there was such a love of pigs and boar in Italy?
Yet more proof that this animal is loved was a comment to me from Diego, at the Civetella Raniera Castle. He saw my necklace and said,
"I like your necklace, because I love that animal."
I couldn't have said it any better myself.

Friday, September 02, 2011

Author Fellow Presentation

Author Fellow, Charles Bock, 9-1-2011.

At last night's 'fellow presentation' at the Civitella Ranieri,
Mr. Bock read from the novel he is currently working on.

Bock's long list of writing credentials is topped by
at least one novel that was on the New York Times bestseller list.

When he began with his 'thank you' section, his voice seemed weak, almost apologetic, but I will in the end call it, shyness. I know the feeling as an artist, when you put your work before the eyes of the public. A sort of dread of the comments.
Bock likened his project to the murals in Assisi, a long process and one that can only be completed by doing the simple things on a daily basis. Do what you need to do that day until it is complete.

But it all worked out fine. The novel is a heavy one of illness and dying, and he got quite emotional while reading some sections. Clearly there is illness happening in his family.
And his section on a diahrea episode of a patience is one that I had experienced myself, and so I can attest to the authenticity of those paragraphs.

It was an intimate time, with an audience of about 20, many of them fellows, and some of the jury that had just completed their job of selecting candidates for this fellowship for the coming year.

A great way to wind down this trip.
Looking inside my Shanghai lunch pail.
Noodles in a cream sauce with pig, and a salad in the next container.

We had painted in the early morning at the castle, and then had lunch served in a lunch pail from Shanghai. Then we made a quick trip to Gubbio, described as the fairytale medieval village, and it was. We had time to climb to the top, and have a gelati and return for the presentation.

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Saint of the day - St Crispolto

From the 'Aphrodite Room' in the Museo dei Bettona.
Yesterday morning, I went to the Museo dei Bettona.
There were a couple of photos of the objects that were in that Etruscan tomb that I wrote about previously. The actual objects must be in Perugia. Among those objects, there were
some lovely rings and earrings.

This was one of my favorite things in the museo's acheology section.
I love little amphoras, and I made a drawing of this in my sketchbook.

In the painting section, I found this lovely fresco
of the Madonna and Child.

There were three Periginos in this small museo.
This one is of St Francesco.

Here the Madonna shielding two Saints
under her large mantle.

And here, another madonna with child
and some Saints at her feet.

Below, a detail of one of the Saints,
don't know his name, let's just say that he sseems
to have suffered a little. That IS a saw blade in his head, right?

And so seems to go the bloodly history of Christianity.
And then ___ I came across the story of our
'Saint of the Day':
St Crispolto

Again, I found info on him in several places, but he is so 'early' that there isn't too much written about him. He is first century, and was such a do-goer, performing miracles in Bettona, that the Romans decided they needed to make an example of him.

The long painting was divided into five parts.
I had no idea who Crispolto was at the time, but later read that he is the Parton Saint of Bettona. This first part shows him helping someone.

Next, is one of two paintings of the Saint that seperated
the three story panels.

Below are the Roman soliders arresting the Saint.

Then, the second of the two portraits of the Saint
that separate the story panels.

Certainly not least, but it is the last of the story. I was amazed by this one, as I've never seen anything like this before. It's definitely a different twist on the torture of a Saint. Evidently, the Romans tried to kill Crispolto twice, but he didn't die. So, they tortured him to death.
Below is Dono Doni's depiction of that torture.
Of course Doni is painting in the 1500's, but still, did he make this up, or was this something that was actually going on, or was there more documentation of
how Crispolto died?
Burning questions, and I have no answers.
Let this be a lesson to us all, don't just oooh and ahhh over the large paintings (as lovely as the 'Adorazioni dei pastori' was) we can't forget to find the interesting stuff that is in the small paintings at the bottom.

I went from torture straight to lunch at the pastry shop.
Espresso with what sort of looked like little chocolate-filled croissants.
The inside had chocolate, and more pastry like, but the top had some really crunchy stuff and the combo was wonderful. I took the second one of these to Susie at the fabricca.

But I had a figue gelati first.