Welcome dear reader:
Today’s full moon in Pisces finds me deeply engaged in the painting “Compass” I set the Return of the Prodigal aside as it is nearing completion and needed to rest while I turned my attention back to the other. The two works have a very similar feel to me and so moving back and forth from one to the other is natural. The very small space I work in is very crowded right now with drawings and incomplete paintings but it feels very alive.
So “Compass” has my present attention and I am very intrigued by what it is becoming. I explained early in the summer how this painting began so I won’t bore you with retelling that. The vision though, as it was in the beginning, remains strong in my imagination and little by little, as it manifests on the board, I am making some exciting creative discoveries. Here is man who appears to be experiencing anxiety as he sits at a desk littered with piles of paper, notes, books, communications, coffee, alcohol and pills. His “heart”, suffering the pain from wounds of three swords(a symbol from Tarot), is being tugged by an entity he has no apparent awareness of. While he believes that the stress he is experiencing is from the spread of information before him and the communication with his laptop, the true cause of his anxiety comes from his inability to recognize the tug on his heart. The relief from the anxiety lies in his following the guidance offered by his spirit companion that is felt deep through his heart center. As I described earlier in the summer the vision had come to offer a solution to a querent’s unhappiness at work. I recognized immediately the relevance not only to that individual but to so many of us in this culture. The relief of believing in the presence of true guidance felt in our hearts has significant healing potential. And although our conscious selves may not be prepared to accept the idea, the thought that there might be a conscious presence very close to us doing the pulling offers a deliverance from fear and emotional pain. So there it is- the two truths that this image is built upon: 1- that one true source of our modern anxiety may be in our inability to recognize and follow guidance felt in our hearts moment to moment and -2- that that there is a true conscious presence doing the guiding and in the acceptance of this lies the abandonment of fear. As in all spiritual ideas- simple but not easy.
Technically with the paint I am discovering textures and colors that are surprisingly satisfying and relevant to the (apparent)content. These discoveries speak to the fact that although I think I have planned the piece and believe that I know what it will look like, my ideas or visions are just a structure, framework or starting point for the transcendent capacity of the work. As I have chosen to surrender to the tactile experience of working in the intuitive flow the work is richer and more colourful than I had planned and I feel that I am capturing something of the juxtaposition of matter to the etheric realm from where symbols and dreams emanate. This describes a central tenant of my philosophy and creative ideas; that there is a realm beyond that which we humans generally perceive. It is as real if not more than our current perceived physical environment and that we interact with it on a moment to moment basis whether we are consciously aware of it or not. A striking recent realization has been that as I strongly believe the physical realm of matter and the etheric is built of the same stuff that painting is a completely relevant medium as it describes perfectly my belief in the sameness of everything. In my paintings whether I create a human or angel they are both made of paint. This is a deeply satisfying experience and really new creative territory for me.
Very sincere thanks dear reader for your time and interest once again,
PS: On Thursday September 18th in Calgary an exhibition of my colleague Robert Pierce will open at ARTFIRM in Calgary. He does very beautiful paintings and I’m sure he will be at the opening 6-8pm.