The Journey, ©John O’Grady
8″ x 8″ X 0.75″ oil on canvas, ready to hang.
I watched the last light of day from my studio, the pale orange glow cast the distant hills in a blue/violet shadow.
The stage was set.
To the top left, out of the picture frame, the risen full moon’s silver light glowed. As if on cue, a family of five small clouds moved across the sky from right to left.
These five roundish forms gradually shifted shape and glowed pearl-like against the dark blue sky. They seemed to stay at the same distance from each other, as if it had been choreographed that way.
I was first drawn to making this piece by the light within the clouds and their nebulous quality.
But on reflection, it was also that fleeting moment seeing them trundling over the ruined castle and old town of Vaison when two of the family had already started to loose shape.
A wistful feeling came over me.
It got me to dream of possibilities and their flight, a family of clouds moving south to the Mediterranean and across the sea to distant lands, always journeying on and on, always together.
No lines on a map or fences to stop them getting to where they were safe, for the sky has no borders and the blue of the night is infinite.
Thank you very much Patricia. I hope your own work is going well. 🙂
Beautiful, John! I am so glad that we were given a glimpse of “the journey”! Oh, that we humans could do likewise. In a sense, I suppose we do! I do hope that I escape evaporation for at least a little while yet.
I hope we all escape ‘evaporation’ for a while Terry, you made me smile. Thanks a lot
Have followed your emails and paintings for a while. I especially love the way you create atmosphere in your work. This is one of your very best. Keep up the great work.
Thanks very much Brian for the encouraging words, much appreciated. I think reliving that particular experience and atmosphere really lies at the core of what i am trying to do, so it is gratifying to know that you experienced it too.
all the best John
I love the looseness of this beautiful painting as it leaves space for the individual imagination to flow. The light of sunset just above the horizon glows as it sinks encapsulating the warmth and energy of the earth. Congratulations John!
Thank you for your thoughtful comment. The sunset glowing was a bit of a task for me as I wanted it appearing as a glow but just enough so it wouldn’t overpower the clouds. I think it worked out okay. My refugee clouds looking for a home were the starting point to the imagination.
This is such a poignant painting, and your observation is so poetic (and so meaningful, especially now). A reminder, too, of the temporal nature of everything.
The palette is so beautiful — subtle yet powerful. I marvel at your command of color. The clouds do appear to be lit from within, and have a kind of kinship with the fading light on the horizon. The deep blue violets in the upper reaches of the sky mirror those at the bottom left, where the land is being left in the dark.
So glad to hear that you felt the poignancy in the painting.It was seeing the family of clouds free to wander that got my imagination flowing. Thank you for your kind words and perceptions on the use of colour, I think that stemmed from the feeling the clouds evoked in me. The bands of colour top and bottom seem to keep the balance and whisper like quality, Mark Rothko thank you. (if that’s not too purple)’.
I love this painting, John, and find a meeting of minds in your own comments as well as remarks by others, especially those by JR. I am captivated by the light from within (down below) and the reflected light from the unseen full moon. The palette and saturation of your colors keep my eye moving around the canvas. Most of all, it is the connectedness of the refugee cloud family, ever-changing and on the move, and the evanescence of existence that you capture with love, reverence and melancholy that move me. Thank you.
Thank you very much for your comment. The words written by the contributors. Often give me so much food for thought and often takes me in a different direction in how I see the painting, but also ideas for future work. I do appreciate your thoughtful and encouraging words on the painting, particularly your thoughts on colour use. kind regards John