15×22″ charcoal on Rives BFK
As I signed my name to this piece of art which has special meaning to me, I had these thoughts.
First of all, it launched my mentorship with Michael Newberry. An incredible artist and someone I now call a friend. He helped me realize how painting a pretty picture would never be enough for me. Sure, there are moments when painting a beautiful object certainly fills the need to create. Yet, when it came time to reach inward to put my thoughts, my needs, my soul on to the canvas, that is when I grew as an artist.
This piece gave me a chance to express my dreams and expectations as an artist. I used a rock in my drawing that I specifically picked up for my father in the Owen’s Valley. At the time my father had lost his sight, but not his sense of touch. I thought if he were to hold the rock in his hands, it would be a wonderful way to bring back the memories of those trips and his fondness for the area. You see, my dad use to take me fishing there. We had special moments. Never much talking, but he taught me strength in ways that didn’t need words. He could do just about anything if he put his mind to it. I have grown up with that belief, and it has seen me through some difficult situations. After my father passed, the rock was returned to me. I hold it often.
The branch is from a tree in my yard. I see this tree when I am creatively dreaming. I have placed this branch in my drawing as a symbol of growth and roots. The Tree of Life has always been a special symbol to me. It is found in art and mythology throughout time. The tree itself is shown many times holding up the heavens. It speaks of man’s place in the universe. I see the branching of the tree, as the interconnections that we make, and through this the inevitable growth. So, as I am branching off from my roots, I am once again growing.
The vase is placed half-full with water. It is my sense of optimism showing clearly through a glass vase holding a basic necessity. Water has the power to abolish, dissolve, purify, wash away and regenerate. Water carries Life, and all Life relies on water. Creativity is similar. It has carried Life throughout history, as Life relies on creativity.
Supporting this Still Life is a pillow. A pillow in which to dream. What would become of me if I were not allowed to dream?
Finally, the ribbon has been unwrapped. The past years has been an unwrapping of many sorts for me. I am shedding the need to be constantly available to my family. I have unwrapped my dreams and now I can see clearly where I want my passions to take me in the future. The pretty decorations, and fancy wrappers are discarded. What is needed are the basic necessities to be able to create, and the means in which to share those visions.
That is why, I am sharing this work of art with you. I hope you can understand this need of mine. Art, and my passion for it, is meant to be shared.