After yesterday’s vulture post, this seems appropriate, as it’s also about death, resurrection and the cycle of life.
I did this painting about this time of year five years ago or so. I guess you could call it a plein-aire still life. Although I’m afraid landscape escapes me, I do love to paint outside, and back then I was doing a lot of it. One day I was tramping around in the woods, despairing of ever finding a composition I could handle, when I came across this little jewel lying on the forest floor.
I’m really not sure what animal donated its skull for the occasion. It didn’t seem quite like a deer skull – perhaps a sheep? Anyway, I loved the way Life was just reaffirming its hold on the old bones in the form of delicate Spring Beauty blossoms lovingly embracing them.
I like to think of my find as Nature’s brilliant reply to the old concept of Vanitas. Instead of a meditation on the transience of life and futility of pleasure, it’s a vibrant affirmation of resiliency and the triumph of life even in the aftermath of inevitable death and decay.
I am really drawn to the colors you used for this, Anne. It looks as though you were carefully placing it amongst the new growth and the fading out at the edges was a beautiful way to suggest possibility.
The funny thing was, I didn’t have to do a thing. It was just one of those paintings you come across, already arranged just for you.