We are not much in to 2017 but there a few things that have already had an impact on me. The first is the farewell speech of Barack Obama and the loyalty and graciousness of Michelle Obama in their final interviews from the White House.
It is wonderful to be reminded of superb eloquence, intelligence and passion. The thoughts that have lingered are Barack’s call for “active citizenship”. We all need to take responsibility for our community, the governments we Elect and how we behave.
How does this relate to art? Art is an outcome of the society it’s created in. Because I would like a society that’s kinder, more compassionate, more empathetic, more open, more inclusive, I need to be more of those things myself. I think it’s then more likely that the art I create is open, honest and light-hearted.
On a simple local level, environmental concerns and what I read affects my work. I’m reading Peter Wohlleben’s “The Hidden Life of Trees”. I started reading it because of the thoughtless eradication of trees where we live. I knew that we need trees for carbon dioxide and birds need trees but I didn’t fully realize that trees share food and communicate with each other. It’s no wonder that our destruction of their well-being, not only destroys their community but ours too. As I go forward I feel an immense need to save our beautiful old trees so I am hugging them, visiting wild places to see their larger communities and painting about it.