The Art of Continuing to Look


          Dragonfly Cornucopia (oil on canvas)

I imagine the insect’s eye/brain view and wish it were my own. Consider that kind of complete life focus on voluptuous warm color, a cheek perennially brushed by gentle petals lighter than air.

I am on a local hummingbird’s schedule for roughly one pm’s. It’s not me of course it’s the deep pink tree fuscia with nectar-weighty drooping downward trumpet shaped flowers by my door.

I suppose the hummingbird is driven by instinct toward what is, coincidentally, pretty. Well, we share that, humans and insects. Life shares that. What we can’t do is fly into, hover above, dip and turn within the maze of flowering bush and vine as a dizzying ecstasy overtakes the senses. But insects and birds are orderly, thoughtful…and looking for a meal.

A person drunk with color leaves those very things behind and likely will not care about food in the throes of heightened perception. Our ordinary survival vision, our daily life is functional, and beauty is a treat, a plan made to step aside in order to smell the roses.

If we want enveloping, there are pools below tropic waterfalls, sunsets where the colored air is digestible. We weave textiles of air borne silks and rich brocade, and decorate houses and plant gardens and relish the closeness of beautiful things.   And it suits our bigger plans, to see all we can, to witness and experience a multilayer life that every day expands before us and we reach to touch.

Shared too with animals and birds and bugs and water creatures who, after all, do migrate.  Everyone of us is on the search for something more, beyond what we know. And maybe that’s the life force, that internal push, the secret of being alive, the art of continuing to look.

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4 thoughts on “The Art of Continuing to Look

  1. Wow, you’ve had a creative summer! Love what the dots do on the first painting of this series. Just starting to come up for air & it’s great to be met by these visions.

    • Hello Bette! I’m very pleased you like these paintings. They work well together I was thinking and made the combo. Lots of garden inspiration, insects and birds. I haven’t tackled lizards yet but by God they are in profusion. Nice lot of heat, the summer’s been beautiful, hoping it will last through December.
      Sounds like your months have been full, too.
      And best of all no Big Sur emergencies, hot dog for that!

  2. If color is the life force of the painter, you certainly have hold it by the tail and are giving it a good twirl. Lush color, sensuous color, drunk color – your art teaches us to see and makes the art of looking an end in itself. Thanks…

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