Life is full of uncertainty. This can be very stressful for those of us who like to have things “nailed down”. As my life has unfolded I have come to feel like a roofer in a hurricane – every time I get one loose shingle nailed down another one begins to flap in the wind. When it gets really bad I have had to give up on nailing shingles for a while and concentrate on not getting blown off the roof.
But I am still here.
What a lifetime of these experiences has taught me is that all you have to do to survive is hang on tight and have faith that no storm lasts forever.
To express these thoughts, I painted “Hope In The Fog”. It is about having faith that things will turn out well, even when you are lost in the fog and have no idea what lies ahead. In the original composition, there was to be a country church barely visible through the fog in the background. The church symbolized stability, safety, and security. As I painted, I used a translucent glaze to create the fog effect. With each layer of glaze, the church became less and less visible. Things were going well until… I added one too many layers of glaze and the church disappeared completely. With some painting techniques you get only one crack at getting it right, and this was one of those situations. If I repainted the church the thickness of the additional paint would have created a subtle change in the surface texture that would have ruined the illusion.
Isn’t it always that “one last thing” that gets us in trouble? As I thought about it I decided that I liked it better with the church not being visible. If the painting was about having faith even when you could see no way out, having the church be invisible was a better concept. It is not hard to have faith in something you can see, faith comes in when you have to believe in something you cannot see.
In this painting, we see a horse named Hope on a cold foggy morning.
Image and text © 2016 James Golaszewski