Baby bellies

January 25th, 2016

A ship under sail and a big-bellied woman
Are the handsomest two things that can be seen common.”
–Benjamin Franklin
(Somehow I think only a guy would say that!)

A few years ago and a few years apart, two moms-to-be made graceful, sculptural, rotund plaster casts of their bellies in the latter stages of pregnancy. IMG_7214

I felt very honored when they brought the casts to me asking me to enhance them with paintings.
Truly a privilege!

The casts are irreplaceable and precious. The first thing I did was reinforce the edges which were thin and fragile.  I painted them black because I prefer working on a dark ground.

The next step was to decide what to draw and paint on the rounded surface.

The model!


Nests are the perfect image for this special project.
A nest is a haven. A magical place of nurturing and growth created especially for the emergence of new life. I wanted to make them bright, magical and mysterious.




Liza & the Russller -to -be 1754 Park Ave, Baltimore, Md


The process made me think of my own immensely round belly so many years ago. It never occurred to me to make a cast!
All I have is this photo.
And the kimono!
And my wonderful son!

“Before you were born I carried you under my heart. From the moment you arrived in this world until the moment I leave it, I will always carry you in my heart.” – Mandy Harrison

9 Responses to “Baby bellies”

  1. Pamela says:

    Liza, The painted belly is so beautiful and the nest so fitting! I love this ~ and love the photo of you from years ago (had to look close ~ yup, it’s you!!). I modeled for some artist friends when my first child Colleen, now 37, was days away from entering the world. I still have those drawings…albeit tucked away. This reminded me so much of the preciousness of sharing with other women the amazing experience of carrying a child so close to heart. Thank you for this post! Think of you often ~ and am thankful for FB to keep up with all your wonderful work. Take care friend, Pamela

    • lizamyers says:

      Thanks so much Pamela! Being a mom is a magical experience from the very beginning! I’d love to see those drawing someday!

  2. Carey says:

    Beautiful work Liza…your post is framed nicely with opposing words as well. I agree Ben does speak from the lustful adventurous male perspective of full sails and full bellies, while Mandy speaks from the heart. Yet both see the beauty in the shapes and the Life created within.

  3. Tom Myers says:

    Fake Franklin quotes are so common that you should try to give a reference when you’ve got a real one, as you do:
    Poor Richard’s Almanack, 1735 | Benjamin Franklin | AMDOCS: Documents for the Study of American History

  4. Tom Myers says:

    On the other hand, I did talk about another one I like, almost ten years ago at

Leave a Reply