Stream Works

Continuing in a series about the artists in my life, and the way their art impacts my world.

"We seek out campsites by rivers and streams. The flow becomes gurgling white noise for tent sleep. The water play becomes the work of sons and brothers." ~Kleigh

Stream work has always been Steve's job. He is a Dad who gets in the stream with his sons. This running tradition would not exist without him. The boys dig sand and dirt, move rocks, and redirect waterways. It is a child's practice of adult work. And my husband plays alongside them. This is how it has always been, still is, and perhaps always will be. I know the memory of each son will contain at least one mental snapshot of 10 feet and hands in the water of their childhood.

A few years ago, I had an actual photo of stream work on my fridge. It was a 4"x6" snapshot of time spent along the stream in a tiny southern Colorado town named Dolores. We were headed home from the Grand Canyon, sun baked, content, and in the slower pace of a summer week. Steve and the sons were working at play and I had a moment to stop and really see it. It was one of those times. And, my camera captured it.

A fridge magnet held my little water picture in place as the door opened and closed. During snack hunts and meal prep, it was a well-placed reminder of beauty. My friend Lois came over one day and saw the picture. Something about it struck her.

Lois Rosio Sprague is a watercolor artist. She does a wide variety of things non-watercolor. But her main passion is human figures and faces in the drippiest medium. She asked if she could borrow my photo. It went with her to a watercolor class she was teaching. And, in the process, my little fridge photo morphed into a big framed 3 1/2 ft. by 4 1/2 ft. portrait on my dining room wall. I gave it to Steve for Christmas.

If my house is burning down, I will grab this picture first. It is a freeze frame of streamworks. It contains a magnified version of my husband as a Dad in the water of life with his sons. And, for me, that is the best art of all.

Interested in the portrait work of Lois Rosio Sprague?
Go see her website: