Thursday, July 26, 2012

things of comfort re: painting.

A year and a half ago, I had never seen When Harry Met Sally.
I borrowed it from my mom's DVD collection (I think my Dad gave it to her for Christmas once, but she never watches DVDs - she likes to stumble upon her favorite movies on television) and brought it back to my apartment last winter knowing that I'd be needing movies to watch while painting for Depending Upon the Nature of the Beast.
I put it in hesitantly one winter afternoon. I say hesitantly because, like my mom, I am skeptical of Nora Ephron movies that star Meg Ryan without Tom Hanks. (You've Got Mail is a favorite shared by my mom and I). I sat down to paint. I instantly (seriously) fell in love, from the first note of music, with When Harry Met Sally. I watched it several times in a row that day while painting.
I have watched it, I would safely say, about 100 times since then, and don't even have to look up because I know it by heart. I find myself saying lines out loud as they come (especially the little scenes where the old married couples are telling the stories of how they met). 
And now, at 1 am on a Wednesday into Thursday night, I am watching it for maybe the one hundred and first time and finishing a painting for my upcoming show and feeling nostalgic for my bedroom in my old apartment in which I holed up for a whole winter to paint and watch this movie on repeat. 
I love that when I'm old, I'll watch this movie or show it to my kids and it will always remind me of that time in my life. And it will always remind me of painting. And it will always be there for me when I'm painting. Just like Breakfast at Tiffany's and Shopgirl. 
It also feels appropriate as a little tribute to Nora. I've been reading her essays and love her even more than I did before. 
I hope you're all having a beautiful evening and a lovely summer.
What are your favorite movies to watch while you do what you do?
xo, Amanda


Paul S said...

I can remember When Harry Met Sally being released and it gladdens my heart to see that it's growing in stature and gaining new admirers with every year that passes.

It always reminds me of carefree student days, in fact for a while I used to pass a billboard poster of the film every day on my walk to college.

Like you I was saddened by Norah Ephron's recent passing, I don't know if you've already seen this, but this is what Meg Ryan had to say about Norah.

“Nora was an era. We pictured ourselves inside her dreams and they became ours. All wisdom, wit and sparkle lights, what a treat she was, what a blessing. I marvel again and again, what a life… To have created a simple happiness in people, to have added to the sum of delight in the world.”
— Meg Ryan

Amanda Laurel Atkins said...

Hi Paul,
I had not heard that quote yet, thank you so much! What an eloquent and accurate description of Nora Ephron. I love that When Harry Met Sally reminds you of your college days. :) Have a beautiful rest of summer!
-Amanda said...

OH. Yes. I loved that Meg quote on Nora. I had it written into my unpublished YGM post (which I still haven't posted yet, because I'm getting too perfectionist about it :( ! I'm so glad you also felt WARY of this movie (due to lack of Tom Hanks) Hehe.

If you EVER need to watch it for the 101th time, I'd love to watch too :)

A Painted Journey said...

Oh, honey, I just love this post. I love that you are making such wonderful memories. Maybe I need to start putting in my old Enya CD's as that seems to be what I listened to non-stop when I was doing some of my marathon painting sessions! As far as movies, you're right. The ones I stumble across (as you so aptly put it) that I can never resist stopping at, no matter what point in the movie, are Sleepless in Seattle, You've Got Mail, Under the Tuscan Sun, Practical Magic, P.S. I Love You, and Mama Mia... Thanks for this post - loved it! Love, Mommy

Daniela Hyacinthe said...

I really like watching the movie"As Good As It Gets" with Jack Nicholson while doing artwork. Some people find it distracting but I feel even more in tuned into my artwork when I have a movie playing in the background. The movie is hilarious and less fantastical love story, much like "When Harry met Sally"