Layers of Love


Twelve layers of watercolor provide an arresting image in this abstract painting of a heart, creating a perfect card for any loved one.


When my daughters were little, I followed a simple routine every night to put them to sleep. I would start by pulling down all the covers before they hopped into bed. Once they were on their backs, I pulled up just the sheet and tucked it firmly around their bodies, and then did the same with the blanket (in winter), and the comforter. When I was finished I placed a kiss on their foreheads and said, “I’m wrapping you in layers of love. Good night!”

The phrase “layers of love” came to mind when I was searching for a new and different way to express love on a greeting card. I wanted to stay true to my tradition of not having any written words on the card, as it is my firm belief that all words on a card should come from the giver, not the artist. The lack of words also means the card can be given to a wider range of recipients, opening up the possibility for many types of love. But how was I to create something new and different, something that couldn’t be found in a big box store, without using words?

The answer came to me through the magic of watercolors. I drew a simple heart shape, painted it with clear water, then dropped in a layer of paint. I let the paint spread, dried it with a hair dryer, and then added in another layer with a different color. I did this a total of 12 times, each time varying the paint color and application method to produce a wildly random collection of drips, drops, and splotches. I completed six versions of this design until I finally came up with one I couldn’t wait to see in print.

What do you see when you look at this piece? A neighbor told me it looked like a box of chocolates. A friend told me she could see a heart pierced by an arrow. As for me, what I see is a lot like what I told my girls so long ago: that there are many, many layers of love.


Weight .5 oz
Dimensions 5.83 × 4.13 × .016 in


Scroll to Top