Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Every now and then I paint something for the wrong reason. Don't get me wrong, it's always coming from the heart. What I mean is that I involve myself in situations that I find highly emotional. While they can be an amazing source of drive, they can also infect my attitude. The sadness I feel for a fallen tree, for example, can be depicted in two different ways: The dark, deathly, clinging and desperate way - and the life-celebrating, remembering, but not holding-onto way.

Last year there was such a painting. I was proud of it then. "Here, industry - take that!" My little poke at the changing surroundings. The painting didn't sell. I don't measure my talent or success by the number of sold works, but there is something incredibly rewarding in selling a painting. Aside from the financial benefit, the knowledge that I intellectually connected with another human being feeds me beyond measure. The idea that I put my love into a painting and someone that I've never met was open to seeing it (not just looking at it), feeling it and believing in its impact enough to take it home. If I had to pick one instance when I knew I was doing what I'm destined to do, it would be a heartfelt message I received from a mom who lost her son.

I had 'that one' painting sent back to me. Seeing it again, I could hardly believe how dark and desolate it was. I almost tasted the bitterness the painting seemed to radiate. I brightened the tree. Colour. Lots of it. Every type of yellow Cadmium I could load onto my fat brush. Copper foil. Yummy! Bright bits of spicy teal for contrast. Buttery reds. Intoxicating iron oxides. I changed the title to "Everything Stills Within". Wow. Amazing! I hung it in the upstairs hallway for three months. It felt like letting go of sadness and embracing happiness. Now that I got so much sweet pleasure out of it, I'm letting it go. Let it wrap someone else with that blanket of comfort.


Canada House Gallery