Quarantine's over, so I headed back home.

My energy levels had been dropping like crazy.

Call it quarantine fatigue, cabin fever or artist burnout if you will. I've consciously kept my stamina going since late March, trying not to run out of energy, that I finally felt that crash early last week.

I don't know what conversations you had with yourself a couple of months ago, but I clearly remember making a deal with the Johanna within that, come summertime, I would be satisfied with how I made the best of this time.

Well, it turns out that being proud of oneself consumes a lot of energy.

I knew exactly what I needed to do in order to refill my tank.

Driving anywhere has always brought me peace of mind. Specially if I'm heading to the very place that I consider to be my fountain of youth.

There's always that special place that you call home, even when you're not a permanent resident.

To me, that special place is 3 hours away from where I live. It's the place where I spent the best summers of my teenage years, and the place where I felt in love with being an artist.

"Quarantine 3" - 39x39 inch - Acrylic on paper.

"Quarantine 2" - 39x39 inch - Acrylic on paper.

The Florida Gulf Coast took a little part of me and never gave it back, not that I would ever ask for it...

It was July, I was 14 years old and heading for an entire month of intense tennis training under the blazing rays of sun of Bradenton. It was the first time I'd be away from home, by myself, experimenting the cultural melting pot that Bollettieri Tennis Academy was.

I'd never experimented anything as exciting as those 4 weeks. Complete freedom, independence, and discovery. Sunny, sweaty days of intense tennis practice with new found friends, alternating with afternoons parading around the local mall in our tanned legs in shorts, and well deserved breaks at the beach.

First it was Bradenton Beach, and in later years when I went back to Sarasota to attend art school I'd come to discover my Anna Maria.

"Quarantine 1" - 39x39 inch - Acrylic on paper.

A weekend swimming in the turquoise waters of Anna Maria Island was long overdue.

We spent our days riding bikes around the island, stopping for a swim every time we broke a sweat, relaxing under the pines trees on hidden spots, dolphin watching, and eating ice-cream like we were 14 years old once again.

There's nothing like catching the sunset at 8:45 PM while swimming in pink ocean waters, and then riding your bicycle back home in flip-flops with white sand covered feet.

It's Tuesday afternoon, I am working from Miami, and I'm counting the days to be on the road heading west again.

Enquire about this series of paintings here.

Subscribe to my mailing list

©2020 Johanna Boccardo