Cute lil’ Flapper Actress

Painting by Niya Christine

#51/365 Paintings

Doesn’t she look perky? Ready for anything life throws at her. I love the fashion and attitudes that emerged post WWI, when women rebelled against rules of conduct set forth in the nineteenth century. She wore skirts that swung over her knee when she danced, and rolled stockings (oh my!). Her hair? A bob, like a boy’s cut. They set the rulebook on fire and had a helluva time! That would have been me. I’d probably dye my hair a different color every week and pretend to be elegant as I choked on long stemmed cigarettes. I’m sure I would have had a St. Bernard to accompany me at the dances.

A social celebrity Zelda Fitzgerald, the wife of F. Scott Fitzgerold could not be hemmed in—not for a second. Also the “It” Girl, Clara Bow and Mary Pickford known for popular movies of the 1920’s. I can’t take the smile off my face thinking of the outrageous dismissals of rules and pre-ordaned fashion these women confidently sported. And why not? The war had torn everything apart. They were part of the life force that brought it back together.


Project notes: Character… yes, yes, a challenge not to spend too much time on faces. I’m used to painting large. So faces in small spaces? Very new for me. I’m enjoying the learning and humiliations that go with the learning. Be happy not perfect this redhead says over and over in a day.

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  • WM Rine February 20, 2013  

    Nice bit of history with an attitude, and painting has all the sass and spunkiness of those happy and brave women.

  • Janine February 20, 2013  

    ‘love your writing style and and thank you for the inspiration and beautiful articulation of a path and a process. Choppy bobs, color experiments (…and social experiments to boot. …btw-she must have cute boots.) Here’s to putting it together with purposeful, yet whimsical, intent. Unsolicited request: please paint boots: for walking, dancing, and kicking, as needed. Thanks Niya. now to kick some dirt and save the world. …happy, and far from perfect. Thanks for the daily thoughts and images. I admire your tenacity. – J

  • Richard F February 21, 2013  

    Your work is like my apple a day…

    It’s my “front page” every day… Only after viewing, do II head over to the NYT braced for the negatives, with your positive state of mind as my defense…