I am often asked what the source of my inspiration is. But to be honest, I often challenge myself with another question, which is – ‘Why am I painting?’ I don’t just want to paint you see, I’d rather my work has something to say.
What inspires me?
Is it the landscape? Sure. Is it the Isle of Man? Most definitely! But the colours I put down are also an inspiration aside from the landscape. But what else is in the mix?
These were my thoughts during the working of this difficult painting, especially as I had been asked to submit work for a book. A work inspired in some way by living here as I do in the Isle of Man. But as this difficult painting morphed into various expressions of itself I realised that I had come to the point that I didn’t know what I was doing, therefore I stopped and asked myself some questions:
What is it about?
Is it actually saying anything?
And more to the point – what is the source of my inspiration for this one?
These are the various forms it took!
I sought God in prayer, as is my practice, and the words ‘the source‘ came to me.
So what is my true source of inspiration? The landscape? Sure. The colours I put down? Yes, they are an inspiration aside from the landscape.
‘But my true source is in You Lord, You are my light, my strength and my hope. I draw from you.’
My own prayer
Inspiration and Focus
I want to put that into my work, and as I thought about that, I saw that what I really wanted the content and focus of this painting to be was the depth; being able to go right into the light in the middle. That is what happens here in this incredible landscape. A beautiful foreground was needed because that sets the scene and takes the viewer right into centre stage which is that in-between place of depth, light and beauty, a beautiful place to lose oneself in. That is what I want my focus to be.
I realised that the trauma I had worked through was of little importance, because, at the end of the day, all the struggle and striving, forced me to consider what my strength and purpose was.
And as I look at all the ups and downs and discrepancies and lack of permanent style within my work, I realise that each painting has been driven by different ideas and thoughts, and that they are all valid in their own intent. I believe that is good, because different things speak to different people.
‘So, take my hands Lord and use them for Your glory.’
What happens along the way
Having taken photos of my progress in this painting, looking back I realise that each stage was beautiful. Traumatic, lost and confused maybe, but beautiful. I understand how God uses all our discrepancies and mistakes, our lost confusion, and works a thing of beauty out of them if we allow it. Sometimes though, we simply have to hang in there and persevere!
May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to you, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer.