Updated: Sep 28, 2022
I found the above glass horse in an antique shop several years ago and had wanted to use it in a painting for some time. It wasn't until I came across the Jane West action figure that I discovered what the horse's role might be in the painting, Escape (shown below). To my great surprise, Jane not only fit perfectly on the horse and didn't require any sticky wax or support to keep her there. At that point, there was no turning back.
The rest of the objects fell into place fairly easily. I didn't spend a lot of time obsessing over what pieces might work nor what they would mean in this context. It was a very intuitive process of pulling objects from the closet and just knowing what would work. Putting together a composition for a painting doesn't usually happen quite so smoothly. There's usually a lot more trial and error.
The word 'escape' was the only word I considered for this piece but I didn't really know why at first. I just couldn't get it out of my head. Of course, it made perfect sense to me later when I considered the fact that I had recently retired from a long career as an advertising art director and graphic designer. I had tried to leave my career for years and would get pulled back in for one reason or another. The painting naturally reflected my letting go and moving on.
Escape | Oil on linen, 20 in. X 30 in.