Monday, 13 December 2010

Journeys

I have recently undertaken a long journey. Anyone who still thinks air travel is exciting and romantic is labouring under a severe misconception. I also had the rather bizarre experience of flying in the opposite direction to Dubai before flying to Brisbane. If we were living in medieval times, air travel would be used as a most effective form of torture. Then, when you reach your destination, you realize that you have lost a day.

Coming in to land - Dubai lights
Moving to another country is an exciting experience although there are many unknowns and much unfamiliar territory. At the moment, I feel more like a visitor than a resident. That will change as I get myself organized and find my way around.
Much as artists want to be free to be creative, I think at heart we do enjoy a routine to our daily life. We do better work when we set aside a specific time to our work. When there is no routine at all, it’s difficult to focus. It will take some time for me to set up a routine but for the moment I enjoy each day as it comes.
 

Drive Home Series
These small paintings were painted when I was still in South Africa and are a direct result of a daily routine that was suddenly changed, and an ordinary journey that took on a different aspect.
The routine of driving home from work was usually always the same. A slow drive in the traffic took me along the same road; I would see the same people selling goods at the same street corner. There’s nothing much to get excited about.

Drive Home - Red car - oil on canvas
205mm x 205mm         
©2010 Carol Lee Beckx
Then one day, I was a little later than usual and it had been raining. The streets were transformed. Wonderful reflections from the traffic lights lit up the road. Luckily I had my camera in the car and while waiting for the traffic to move I could capture the moment.  A mundane routine became an exciting inspiration for a series of paintings.
The series illustrates the drive from the centre of Durban, down Berea Road, along Essenwood Road with the large leafy trees and then down Argyle Road. One of the paintings includes the Moses Mabida soccer stadium. During the day the iconic white stadium has quite a different look, at night it’s a ribbon of lights shining against the night sky.

Drive home - Moses Mabida Stadium -oil on canvas
205mm x 205mm            
©2010 Carol Lee Beckx
The paintings showed the transition from early evening with gentle pastel colours in the clouds, gradually getting darker and darker until the lights are shining against the night sky – a dramatic contrast.
 A full portfolio of these paintings can be viewed on my website in the  Paintings section, Landscape portfolio.