"Splashdown" ​by Linda Kinney

Summer Collection

Original Donated to Scottish Rite

Children's Hospital, Dallas, Texas

My oldest brother has relatives in the Colorado Springs, Colorado area of the United

States. One summer, he and his family went to visit. It so happened that there was a hot

air balloon festival at the park. He took pictures from the vantage point of a hilltop, which

is unusual. Most times hot air balloons are seen looking up from the ground. Some

people who have seen this painting say that they follow the hot air balloon festivals and

told me about each balloon and in some cases, the families that own them. That was

very interesting.

 

As “Splashdown” came to life on the 16" x 20" (40.64 x 50.80 cm) canvas, it gave me

a sense of joy. All the bright colors dancing in a beautiful cloudless summer sky. The

multitude of hues were even more brilliant than normal. Each color was hundreds of

shades and were iridescent as the sun shone on each of them. The families were

relaxing on quilts and blankets; some were standing, making new friends or renewing

memories with a distant relative. As I painted, I could almost hear them laughing and

talking on this special occasion. The children were running and playing, pointing at the

balloons and anxiously enjoying every second. While they ate their picnic lunches, one

balloon got too close to the water and touched down as the basket began to break apart

and fill with water. The gasps and horror of the spectators filled the air. They ran to the

rescue, but suddenly realized the river was shallow. The passengers had abandoned

ship and were wading to shore and the distraction was soon forgotten.

 

Once “Splashdown” was completed, dried and sealed, I stared at it and the memories of

the process of its creation filled my mind. I wondered what God would do with this

painting. Many people admired it, but the original did not sell. Then one day, I was

contacted by a hospital in Dallas, Texas. The manager had seen some of my other

paintings and was soliciting a donation for their annual fundraiser. I immediately thought

of “Splashdown”. I remembered how it made me feel as I was painting it, and

subsequently each time I looked at it. I thought of the comments people made when

they saw it. This had to be the purpose of “Splashdown”, to bring a little joy into the lives

of children and their parents as they were struggling through a horrendous time in their

life. This oil painting on canvas was donated to The Scottish Rite Children's Hospital in Dallas, Texas,

and is only one of the donations made possible by The Gift given to me in 1982.