Oh no, not the umlaut! (Painting a German cathedral)

One of the reasons I never really made the transition to typing much in German was the difficulty of figuring out how to get the German characters from the keyboard. After trying all the shortcuts, I finally resorted to using the character map, which is, shall we say, a pain in the Arsch.

I know how to spell words the long way without using the umlaut, but it doesn't look right to me. And this piece, painted from a city I loved visiting and hope to see again, just doesn't look right with an English title. "Cologne Cathedral" sounds like something in my bathroom closet, as compared to "Kölner Dom."

"Kölner Dom" 9 x 12 chalk pastel on paper
Click here to buy print:

If there is one thing I could do over on my year in Germany, it would have been to take more pictures! I stopped at most of the obligatory spots and took some, but at the time, I was a 17 year-old who was more interested in experiencing my year abroad rather than recording it. Of course, that was back when you had to get your film developed rather have instant access to your pictures.

I was lucky enough to visit the city of Cologne twice (or Köln, as it's pronounced in German). The first visit lasted about a week, as it was a class trip (much better than any field trips back home!) It was my favorite German city, because it had everything I found interesting: beautiful buildings, the Rhine River, street performers, cafes and beer gardens, and beautiful weather in the fall. We actually climbed the narrow, winding staircases to the top of the cathedral, which led to a beautiful view of the Altstadt and the sparkling Rhine. We even got to see an American pop art exhibit next door to the cathedral, which at the time I found funny (my German classmates thought I would really connect with that, being an American. I didn't.)

I honestly don't know what got into me when I painted this piece, but between looking at those pictures and the scent of fresh bread I got when I opened my cupboard this morning, I'm having an awful lot of Heimweh for my second homeland. Time to break out the Nutella!

Click here to see more works inspired by places I've visited:


"Be Mine, Street Mime"
12 x 12 chalk pastel on paper
Click here to buy print:


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