© 2017 by HEATHER FRACCALVIERI.

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Watercolor, 24" x 18"

Zoe was a bit of a reluctant model. After a little pressure I managed to snap some pictures of her. This was the only one where she wasn't laughing. 

Here is my impression of Zoe: she's one of those secretively hilarious people. Whenever I see her, she is the only one in the room her age. There is quite a bit of an age gap on either end. So she floats between each group: running around with the kids or sitting around a table with their parents. But really just does her own thing. She's quiet, but she's not shy. And I think it makes it easy for most people to miss her. I'm in the same boat when it comes to the age gap thing. Except the kids aren't really dragging me outside to play with them. So while I'm standing on the outskirts navigating the conversations going on around me about kids and marriage--which I can't contribute to at all--I go into my default mode of silent observation. And whenever I glance over at Zoe, I catch her doing or saying something that has me laughing hysterically a moment later. And she's always so quiet and off handed about it that I always think that I wasn't suppose to notice. And she gives me a glance that says she's surprised she's been found out. But she laughs with me. 

She told me once that she doesn't take anything seriously. She's in seventh grade. She shouldn't take things too seriously. So here she is. Moments after getting off the trampoline on a hot summer evening. Her hair falling loose from her ponytail after jumping and running around. Protesting that she's "too gross" to have her picture taken. She sees Talia walk up next to her with birthday cake icing covering her face. We all stop and laugh. Then Zoe looks up into the camera once more before she runs off again. 

Between Smiles