A few weeks ago the Argyll Art Map weekend took place in this area, with various local artists and photographers opening their workshops to the public. It was a great opportunity to peak into places you may not normally be allowed, and to examine works of creativity outside your comfort zone.
I expected to enjoy, and did enjoy, the amazing pictures of local towns and beauty spots, of wildlife and boats – lots of boats. I was less keen on the picture of Jesus being stabbed by pens (really!), or the urinal turned into … something arty? But it certainly meant there were things to appeal to a wide range of tastes.
What intrigued me, as a writer, was the ways in which this experience of visual art both is and is not the same as writing. I can look at a still life or a scene, and take an emotion from it, but after that I want to move on to the story – what happened here? Why is it significant? Does it mean different things to different people? Not being an artist, and not having thought to ask any of the ones I visited, I don’t know if they also form stories about their work (Neil may be able to answer!). But I do know that their inspiration helps to inspire me, either to write or just to dream.
This picture at the head of this post is Winifred Nicholson’s ‘Gate To The Isles’. It’s one of my favourites, which I’ve had on my bedroom wall for many years. I’ve wondered and wondered who went through that gate last, and why, and what that means to the painter. Below is a painting done by my great-grandfather, which has intrigued me since I was a child. I wanted to walk along that road and find out where it led. Sometimes I even dreamt I was in the picture, finding out what happened next. Perhaps one day I’ll write my way to an answer!
Are there any pictures that inspire you?