Tuesday, April 06, 2010

New York has a reputation for being gritty but when I was on the Upper West Side today, I saw something I just have to share. Picture the scene:

A boy about 10 years old with a mop of black hair was sitting on a bench on the edge of the sidewalk, with a particle board easel in front of him. A paper on the front reads, in careful Elementary school scrawl, "I Draw You: 75 ¢." Below that, he had hung an example of his oevre, what I call classic gradeschool portrait (in graphite and colored pencil): a big round oval of a face, with semi-circular ears sprouting from each side of the head, circles for eyes and hair the texture of pencil squiggles.

If Norman Rockwell were alive today, that's the kind of street scene he would paint.