Completed a painting yesterday. I had actually planned the painting a while back, maybe a few months ago now, but put it aside. Something was not right about the timing of it. Then, out of the blue, the image of the tree came to mind and I shuffled through sketches I had done in order to find it. Thankfully it was not difficult to find.
The entire time I was painting the feeling was that this painting somehow represented the end of something – a death. So, at first, I thought it wanted to be named “Death”. Yet that didn’t feel quite right. I slept on it and this morning the name was revealed, “Desolation.”
The definition here is more along the lines of something being barren; or a time of utter devastation. There is also a certain isolation felt, of being devoid of companionship. The barren tree is a perfect representation of how desolation looks and feels. It is the space between endings and beginnings. Can a person occupying a space of desolation begin again? Do they have the strength, the courage, to break new ground, to burst forth with growth in the Spring? Or will they let their roots shrivel and dry up until the wind uproots them and tosses their remains back into the soil? Will they hang on until they have no choice but to let go? Either way, the cycle of life and death will go on. There is no escaping it.