|"Winter Lights" acrylic on canvas ©2016 Lynn Edwards|
Art can do many positive things for people. One of them is helping a viewer to relive a past experience that holds a special meaning for him or her. Such is the case for the painting shown here, which holds a wonderful memory for me.
"Winter Lights," above, was inspired by my memory of a perfectly still, perfectly awesome winter night many years ago. As I stood at the edge of a frozen lake, I was transfixed by the sight in front of me. Before me was a vast field of glistening ice, and above, a star strewn sky. The moonlight reflecting off the ice was dazzling, made even more so by the infinitude of stars pinpointing the velvety darkness of space. It was one of those rare and tantalizing experiences that opens one's soul to something greater than it's possible to imagine.
Every time I look at this painting I'm transported back to that experience. I can remember every detail of it: how incredibly cold it was (approaching zero), how quiet and still it was, and how pristine the surroundings were (no light pollution, no traffic.) But what's burned into my memory is the breathtaking sight of all that ice glowing in the moonlight.
A work of art can play many roles. It can comfort, confront, evoke, soothe, intrigue, uplift, inform...its effects are many. Whenever I'm feeling stressed or tense, just looking at "Winter Lights" gives me a sense of calm and well being. Although they're usually unaware of the experience that inspired me to paint it, others tell me it has a similar effect on them.
"Winter Lights" currently hangs on the gallery wall in my studio. Across the room, on my inspiration board, there's a quote from the artist Esther J. Williams that really sums it up for me. It reads, "Our art is not just a product -- it is a life-enriching piece of magic." As anyone who's ever been moved by a work of art can attest, its magic can be powerful indeed.
Text and image ©2016 Lynn Edwards.