April 19, 2010

What Does A Sherif Dream About?

Well, Friday night Sheriff Hill's dream was officially unveiled on canvas! It is titled, "Decisions! Decisions" As promised, now that it has been presented publicly, I'll now reveal to you, my readers, the interpretation. In the following paragraphs you'll gain insight into how and why I chose each symbol and metaphor in giving  visual language to the dream of this dedicated public servant, Sheriff Worth Hill.

Simply stated, the Sheriff's dream encompasses his desire to see Durham's youth equipped with what they need to make wise life choices. His earnest hope is to see them make decisions that would lead them away from a path of illiteracy, poverty and crime and toward a path of success and fulfillment. I chose, firstly, to use a theme from the board game, LIFE, in that it, in itself, speaks many parallels that are true to life in that along life's path we are presented options that call for decisions and carry consequences.

 A car filled with jostling friends conveys the strong influence of peers. Nodding to the Sheriff's favorite artist, Ernie Barnes, the figures were drawn in a stylized manner with strong diagonals showing the struggle over directions and decisions. The car is parked by a fork in the road and the viewer watches the wrestling in choosing which path to take. To the right, the path is marked by a neon flashing light yet points to a landscape filled with destruction.

The viewer may wish to interject, "All that glitters is not gold." and is not sure if they see the destination and only hopes their map -consulting will help direct their choice. Concerning the map, this represents Sheriff Hill's mention in his interview with me, that he desires that adults would lend their wisdom, support and guidance in allowing their lives to be used in such a manner as to help give guidance and support to the young people of Durham.

 I personally interject the pondering: What would happen if we adults truly took it upon ourselves to live our lives in such a way so as to contribute a GPS type of effect by allowing our lives to become a visual aide to the next generation to help them gain their bearings? The decision is being discussed in the painting. They find themselves in a "valley of decision". The path on the left is marked by a sign that is unadorned and wooden hinting that hard work is what's ahead. Strewn along the way of this road is education, financial gain, and a thriving vibrant community.

At the horizon, the two destinations present opposing variances of weather conditions ranging from beautifully fair to  ominously stormy. Which path will these young people choose? Interestingly enough, the dream orbs puffing from the car's exhaust has already chosen a path. These "dreams" bursting from the exhaust, actually go before the passengers and head in a direction which lines up with their intentions.

  The car, representing life, is filled and energized, by these dreams. These energized dreams know which path leads to success. One could say, following their "conscience" these dreams correctly follow the better path. The decision must now be made by the passengers, to align their actions with their desired outcomes for their dreams. The lisence plate sums up the message of the painting. Decisions are "UP2U"

What an honor it has been to paint this dream. It has stirred my desire to help youth, in whatever way I can, to make wise decisions and hopefully live my life in such a way as to be a "map" for others.

The next Durham Dreams Portrait will be Mary Ann Black. Today I began sketches. Tomorrow I will talk about her dream and my interpretation.Thanks for keeping me company on this one year journey!


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