I certainly "jitterbugged about".. as I note other bloggers doing. I see many exploring new mediums and subject matter trying to find a unique voice and new directions to keep them motivated. I too... followed a similar path in the earlier days of my painting. I too... maintained a "day job" and family responsibilities for a large part of that journey... so that I indeed had to steal time to sit down to paint.
I faced the very same trials and discouraging hurdles in my life that many of you face in your journeys today. Nothing much has changed for an aspiring painter... really. It is even a more difficult journey to gain success and sales... if that is what motivates you. The Internet has quite literally reshaped the art business.
Throughout my life, I believe I have followed my original passion to paint the landscape around me. Nature continues to intrigue me and inspires me to look at my own life as part of it. I am but one creature who lives in... and depends upon its health to continue to provide for me and my progeny. To the best of my ability, I have tried to maintain stewardship of this Eden and to encourage others who I have met or taught to do likewise.
When I look at the traditional use of the term landscape... I see it differently. I have a view of it as being multifaceted. It is most certainly the natural and physical land form. However, I see it it as a spiritual entity too... because it speaks to me. It is not merely a collection of things. It talks... it breathes... smells and caresses me. It offers me peace and tranquility. It teaches me how to live and to accept inevitable changes that life brings to me... as it does us all.
I am greatly blessed to have discovered that the landscape is my muse. I have no longer any need to travel vast distances to have subjects to paint. Many of those interests have always been at arm's length for me. And in the past... I rushed about to paint as many paintings as I could because of the sense of urgency that other demands brought to my life. Now... I choose to paint ...more thoughtfully... and to choose subjects that I can respond to... solely with that goal in mind.
This new exhibition opportunity... I believe fully reflects this attitude and internal change within me. I have truly enjoyed creating each work. I strongly feel that there exists an intended narrative quality each in each that will offer an opportunity for a dialectic dialogue with my viewers. Hopefully... the show will encourage them to value the beautifully unique Canadian landscape that we share... and to "see" it for what it is - a legacy of heritage. Win ... lose ... or draw... I am continuing on this path and truly hope that the satisfaction and peace continues. I am greatly blessed...
Here are three of the latest smaller works that will be included in the show. All have their origin either on the river or nearby. Two reflect my interest in the natural land form of the Canadian Shield which forms the the unique geological origin of the Thousand Islands. They also record presence of the Saint Lawrence River as the major conduit for the waters of the Great Lakes into the Atlantic Ocean to the east.
"Waiting For the Maple Run" is a small 8 x 10 canvas depicting that period of peace and change... where winter yields to the strengthening sun of spring. It also marks the much-anticipated tradition of tapping sugar maples to make maple syrup . Both are coupled to lift winter-wearied spirits to new heights and "sweet dreams" of summer!
Visiting the bush... and having a pancake breakfast is an annual event I look forward to... as much as catching a glimpse of that first robin harbinger! The practice is a unique piece of Canadian heritage and the lingering connection that we continue to feel with the landscape.
"Wind... Water and Rock" - oil on canvas 8 x 10 inches... here portrayed by a lost channel in the labyrinth of similar passages among these countless breath-taking landscape vistas. This is a universal view really... encapsulating all that this landscape offers visitors - rugged pink crags of granite faces... with windswept white pines and dark green firs clinging tenaciously as they have... for a millennium. While man does influence noticeable changes on the landscape... this rugged land endures and ... eventually has its way with human intruders.
"Quiet Waters" - oil on canvas 12 x 16 inches
This smallish painting qualifies as one of those landscape subjects that transcends the notion that "landscape" merely connotes physical land form. As I "stepped into" this picture... twice... this thought flooded my thoughts... as it customarily does on so many plein air occasions:
"He leadeth me beside still waters... it restoreth my soul..."
The natural world truly does lift my soul fully out of the din of mankind... and provides me the elixir which maintains Hope... Inspiration and my ongoing Gratitude for my life. I wish you the same good fortune with your own painting journeys.
In closing out today's post I offer this very appropriate snippet of wisdom and encouragement from the eastern philosopher Rumi to each of you. He speaks clearly to "Me":
"When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you... a joy."
Much Peace and Joy and...
Good Painting to ALL!!!