Ky. woman receives ‘thank you’ letter from Windsor Castle after sending oil painting to Queen Elizabeth
DANVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Of all the trinkets, trophies and works of art adorning Brenda Pruitt’s home, some of them are pieces she’s crafted.
The interior designer and hobby oil painter has found her niche with portraits, creating dozens of them across several decades. But her most influential work isn’t hung on the walls of her home; it’s not even in Kentucky.
Her greatest work is hanging somewhere in the United Kingdom.
“Hopefully my painting will be in the Queen’s gallery,” Pruitt said.
In 2011, Pruitt’s adventurous nature kicked in during a charity auction, when she and a group of friends got the idea to purchase tickets for a trip overseas.
“A group of girls bought a certificate from a charity auction for a week in Paris out in the countryside,” Pruitt said. “So I had noticed that Kate [Middleton] and [Prince] William were going to get married the week before. So I suggested to the girls that we go a week early and go to the wedding.”
Pruitt and her friends went to London to witness the Royal Wedding and fell in love with the culture. So much so, seven years later, they went back to London to witness Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s wedding.
Their group of friends began full-on following the royals.
“We do keep up with the Royals and we’ll text back and forth about what’s going on and keep everybody abreast,” Pruitt said. “I think you need to make life interesting and this is just another interest in life for me and my friends.”
In January, Pruitt and her friends decided to go back to London for Queen Elizabeth’s Jubilee, celebrating 70 years since Elizabeth ascended to the throne.
And can anyone really go to a party empty-handed?
“I would think, oh, I’ve got to make this look realistic, or I’ve got to get a likeness, so that was my goal to make sure I got a good likeness,” Pruitt said.
She painted an oil portrait of Queen Elizabeth II and sent it to Buckingham Palace in April along with a letter,
She attended the Jubilee in June.
Two weeks later, while already back home in Danville, an envelope slipped its way through the mail slot. It was a “thank you” note from Windsor Castle, handwritten by one of the Queen’s ladies in waiting. The letter explained how the Queen had seen Pruitt’s painting and appreciated the work she had put into it.
“I was very excited when I walked through the front door and found it on the floor through the mail slot,” Pruitt said. “So I feel very fortunate that she looked at my painting. And what she said in the letter was most gracious. So I did know that she did see my painting.”
It’s a memory Pruitt said will last with her forever, and has been at the top of her mind since Queen Elizabeth died.
Two women who a share a connection through a paintbrush, a pen and 4,000 miles.
“I, as an American, appreciate how she has spent her life working for the good of the people and thank her for all the things that she’s done for the world, actually,” Pruitt said. “She’s a prime example of a very special person.”
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