We all cast shadows – the beginning

I am so excited about how inspired I am at the moment in my painting. It is good timing what with my first solo show happening later in the year! I am well underway with the first few paintings now and those sketches and ideas that I had worked on last year are coming into their own in terms me having a clarity about the work I want to make for the show and the stories that I want to put across through the paintings.

We all cast shadows, 2013

We all cast shadows, 2013

It all began with this book. In the heart of the sea by Nathaniel Philbrick – a book I have read many times over the last years. I have probably bored everyone I know silly talking about my love of this book and the story it tells and I had to smile when I found out that it has just been made into a film for TV and now a major movie. The secret will be out as to how good it is (although I would be very surprised if they were anywhere near as good as the book which is flawless in my opinion.)

We all cast shadows

We all cast shadows

The main focus of the story is the whalers and the incredible journey they have to take as a consequence of a tragedy (I won’t give too much away) but the influence on my artwork came from  a different part of the story – one that was not even mentioned in the TV version. That is – the women and families left behind. Those who wait, those who form a community of elders, women and children who live their lives for years not knowing if their loved ones are to return. I have probably blogged about it a few times over the years that I have been creating art inspired by this aspect of whaling life but I still feel I have so much to write (and paint) about this and so I will be blogging the development of the work over the next few months in the lead up to the exhibition.

So there it is. Just a small beginning and I shall look forward to writing more as time goes on.

Comments 4

  1. Karen Slade

    Hi Gillian I can see I’ll have to go on a book hunt… your paintings & what you have written about the subject made me remember a folk song that I used to enjoy singing – I searched for it – it’s called ‘My Donald’ and it’s a haunting song, about ‘the wives & the babes that yearn, for men ne’re returned from hunting the Sperm’ – I’ve found Barbara Dickinson singing it live from 2011: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PYpxY5x8MDI

    1. Post
      Author
      Gillian Lee Smith

      Aaah Karen thank you so much for that link!! Oh my goodness the words and her voice – so beautiful (and gosh where have I been all these years since she sang ‘In know him so well’? I think that was the song – I had no idea how wonderful her work is so will be listening to more for sure. So wonderful.

  2. Sandy

    I am struggling with my story..what to paint..it seems so hard..the subject ..I can paint but am not excited..hoping your class will give me purpose..something to say

    1. Post
      Author
      Gillian Lee Smith

      Sandy thanks for commenting. Believe me, I have been there! Which is why I wrote this course – as I know it is something which is so common to us who have a story inside of us – reaching within to find, and edit, and discover how to tell it. I really believe this!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *