The western edge of Canada has called to me since childhood. After just seeing “Grey” at Expo ’67 in Montreal, found myself standing before a massive tree trunk slice, and knew I had to see this painter’s wild trees for myself. Years later in the early 1980’s, and while crossing by ferry to Vancouver Island, I leaned on the railing watching untouched shorelines slide by, seeing the trees for the first time, and I knew I was home.
Inexplicably, for long periods of time, I’d do other things, and forget my calling. Some distractions were transformative, like traveling to far-flung places, or raising kids. Other imposed; periods marred by surviving chronic illness, besting brain injury, and hard-won battles with mental health.
Through reflection, and tracing Emily’s influence on my art, values, and spirit, I regained a sense of place as an artist. Going outside to paint at many of the locations important to Emily Carr is like entering a vibrational stream she left there, or by others, artists, nature lovers, and art lovers alike. It’s a feeling like a signature, and I like to call it murmurating.
Only now, freed from obligations of children and family, my two grown sons off to and in their own lives, I’m recommitted, and resolved to follow Emily Carr as muse, as mentor, and as a friend, into the forest.
Art without the art lover, the viewer is just self indulgent pictures by the maker. So I would like to invite you to come along with, embrace our murmuration, and be an active participant in our environment, and in our mental health through the love of creativity. Art is symbiotic, the art lover comes with special powers too, bringing life to an art form. Creating is a kind of neutral ground we can all meet together on.
Sometimes, I swear I can feel someone with me as I work, especially outside. Would that I could turn, and see her hand holding up her brush, or you cheering me on with a lifted thumb, all of us murmurating together.
Contact: via Facebook: P Jean Oliver Writer and Artist, or email firstname.lastname@example.org