"Raised on Promises"
When people my age were kids, we were promised all the wondrous treasures that the future held…how great life will be in 10, 20, 45 years. Flying cars. Living to be 200 years old. A virtual utopia for all of mankind. And while human ingenuity certainly has given us countless great advancements, we can’t ignore our fair share of tragedies, misery, and disappointments as well.
“Last year was a son of a bitch for nearly everyone we
– Jason Isbell
The past couple years have definitely had their moments. We’ve endured the first stages of the Trump regime. We lost Tom Petty. And people have seemed to be increasingly divisive and downright mean to each other. It takes a conscious choice to stay above the fray, but at what cost? And does this choice equate to being ill-informed? And is that even worth it?
“Everybody’s hurt, and mine ain’t the worst,
But it’s mine and I’m feeling it now.”
- Brian Fallon
As I began this series, I noticed a common theme related to a sense of dread or feelings of melancholy in the paintings. Quite frankly, I realized that the stories presenting themselves to me seemed to be on the moody side. Dark, ominous skies. Somber tones. My ever-present blackbirds signaling a sense of doom and dread.
This wasn’t a conscious choice; I simply painted what came to mind or what I felt needed to be said. Several of these images related to not-so-great things I saw every day in any number of places. So it surprised me just a bit when a couple happy themes eventually appeared.
“Well she was an American Girl, raised on promises,
She couldn’t help thinking that there was a little more to life somewhere else.”
- Tom Petty
We can’t let ourselves only focus on the bad. The downers. The bummers. I can’t quite see the light at the end of the tunnel, but it’s got to be getting closer. Surely it’s just around the next turn ahead. Despite all of the turmoil and strife, I can’t think of a historical period that I’d rather live in. I know we’ll get through this.