Thursday, December 10, 2009

Meadow Tales

Last November I began a series of sketches of Jack Rabbits that I cross bred with the Snowshoe Hare and tweaked and messed with until they became my very own, kind of surly, Amyesque bunnies (Yes, sometimes I imagine myself as a mad scientist). These newly evolved Fraser Hares are now covering the studio in almost 200 various poses and expressions just waiting to be released from the walls (and the confines of my convoluted brain). I’ve had numerous concepts and ponderings pass through my ever changing mind over the past year, but not one has seemed *just right*. So in the studio the Fraser Hares remained, living out their lives around me as I completed other projects, but still waiting patiently for me to decide what to do with them.

However, the concept of the “Meadow Tales” provided a brief intermission for my poor neglected little bunnies. When I was first invited to have the solo exhibition at AVA, the plan was to have a floral focus. The concept “Wildflower Meadow” seemed obvious, as most of my paintings over the past few years have been inspired by the flowers grown here in the Wildflower Meadow. But along the way, “House in the Meadow” came to fruition and I noticed that some of the Fraser Hares had escaped into the meadow painting.

As many of you have witnessed from my endless wildlife photography, our Wildflower Meadow is filled with a diversity of life that goes well beyond the butterflies and bees. That was when it dawned on me that it might be entertaining to see what the Hares did if I let them out to play. It was! Eventually the Hares antics were caught in paint and included as a sub-series into the “Wildflower Meadow” exhibition. The “Meadow Tales” illustrate various adventures the Fraser Hares had on our land.

My hope is that the “Meadow Tales” continue to play out, leading to new, exciting, more fanciful stories. We shall see if that is what the muse wishes after the Opera North project. In the meantime, I’ll be presenting the first six “Meadow Tales” along with photographs of the yard locations each painting was inspired by. I’ll apologize in advanced for the un-manicured state of the location shots – they weren’t originally intended for public viewing. :)

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