“Connection” is a departure from most of my other wildlife paintings in that it includes a human element. In previous paintings, we the audience were the viewer with the animal gazing back at us out of the picture frame. Now we have adopted the role of third-party observer.
The first in the Connection series features a shaman and a wolf in oils on canvas. I’ve used a fair amount of artistic licence as one would avoid gazing directly into the eyes of a wild animal. Many animals rely on stealth and camouflage for self-preservation, so if you stare at them, they will know their cover has been blown and they could feel challenged, typically eliciting a fight or flight response.
I wanted to paint a connection more as a metaphor, using the eyes. It is about a recognition that we are just one of several species sharing the same planet. All of equal importance, and an intrinsic part of the delicate web of co-dependance that sustains all life. In recognition of that, we should see ourselves in the eyes of the shaman who regards the wolf with respect and with an appreciation of natural harmony.