Last month I was fortunate enough to hear Stevie Nicks and Fleetwood Mac sing those very words live ...."climbed a mountain and I turned around"...lyrics from Stevie's beautiful Landslide song. This song has been echoing in my head for a while now. Every time I look at a recent painting I completed of Mitre Peak, I hum this song..
I've been reflecting lately, asking myself "Why did I paint a mountain?" It's a move away from my usual mixed media style gardens. An iconic New Zealand mountain peak couldn't be further removed from a colourful, bustling cottage garden.
But maybe its closer in comparison than you first might think. I like to paint subject matter that I have experienced first hand, drawing on a well of memories and emotions. Most artists choose subjects and themes that have meaning and relevance to them.
So yes, I have experienced the majesty of Milford Sound and the surrounding peaks and valleys. I've tramped on foot through the wild bush of the Hollyford Valley experiencing all the earthly elements....rain, sun, wind, mud and rain. rain. rain, to escape in a small aeroplane up the coast and into Milford Sound. Exhilarating to say the least!
I have also been a gardener for many years, enjoying the natural energy a garden brings to your home. It is a place you can go to escape from the daily chores of life, find calm and be inspired by the seasonal beauty ever present there.
Both places appear to be at opposite ends of natures spectrum but both can offer us that sense of peace, wonder and escape that lifts you out of the ordinary to some place magical....just like the music of Landslide.
So that is why I painted a mountain....or should that be climbed a mountain?