By Joe Fraser
Wow, that’s insane! I got a painting of myself as a birthday present! It looks so much like me. Right down to the crooked nose, backwards baseball cap and necklace. The best part is that I’m there with my best friend, Poppy (my dog). How great is that? The resemblance is uncanny. Even Poppy’s chubby neck that goes over her collar is there. I love it so much – such a wholesome picture.
Why is it darker over my head than Poppy’s? I mean, normally a stormy sky means something bad is happening. But things are going well. School’s good, I like living with my flatmates. So why does Poppy have a nice bright sky over her and I have pure darkness?
But her eyes look so wholesome! And her super soft ears are on full display which I appreciate.
But her eyes also look like they’ve seen some shit. Like they’ve got PTSD or something. “The gunfire… my brothers… the explosions…” And I look like I’m right there with her. Staring into the abyss thinking about the past. It has an almost Janus feeling. The Roman god of time that could look both forwards and backwards. I look one way – my yellow Labrador looks the other. It rings of the metaphor of creativity, staying in the present in order to achieve the best results and react to the world around us in a better way. This will lead to better work.
This may be the reason for the light and darkness. Poppy looks into the future, supposedly it is bright and full of opportunity – the light. I look left, backwards into the past, reminiscing on past failings and nostalgia for times that will never happen again – the darkness.
Or maybe the simple background of blue river and green means something else. It’s just a place for us to stand and be, there’s no real reason for it to be there. The space itself is meaningless, it is all about the subjects of the painting. And maybe that’s something we should focus on in general, the living beings rather than what’s around us. Don’t get distracted by the weather, or the little river nearby, think about the people flying planes in those clouds or taking a boat down the river. That’s what is more interesting and ultimately more fulfilling. Where would we be without each other?
Oh, I just noticed how adorable Poppy’s little black nose is in the painting! It looks so cold and damp – like a proper healthy dog. Yellow Labs are the best, she actually turned 11 the other day, still as sweet as the day we got her. SHE’S SO CUTE.