Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Arctic Prayer

My second exploratory image in the Arctic series began almost as a doodle in my sketchbook: light, free, humorous. I liked it so well, though far from "serious," that I repeated and refined it on a sheet of Fabriano watercolor paper.

The result, Arctic Prayer, is 11 x 16". Yesterday I cut mat board for it, and will mat and frame it tomorrow. I begin to imagine a showing of these images at Sebastopol Gallery during our July or September rotation. They're adding up, along with my feelings about them. My dread of our climate situation is gradually tempered by excitement from events like the Greenpeace occupation of Shell's drilling rig, followed by Seattle's official and popular response to their presence in their harbor.

Meanwhile, I begin to find my way into dialog with other players. I received an encouraging email from Dahr Jamail. I discovered a photographer friend, Don Jackson, actually printed the banners Greenpeace used in their Shell action. Another photographer friend, Brian Cluer, is a fluvial geomorphologist with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. And a third photographer, Mike Shoys, fellow member of Sebastopol Gallery, is increasingly interested in using his camera for ecological good. All of us are interested in creating an art-science collaboration.

In the whimsy of Arctic Prayer I see animal hope. We are not separate from the rhythm of caribou as they dance, feed, and migrate in harmony with currents of air, water, soil, and ice. Their longing for health and duration touches us across the great mystery. May they guide our thought and effort.

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