Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Coming and Going


Our holidays as a family were often spent in the bush ,staying in tents and cooking on a fire ,we spent our time either swimming, fishing, game viewing or simply reading. One camp site that we stayed in is located at the main river that feeds the Okavango Delta, not far from the village of Shakawe .The camp site is shaded by large Jackal berry trees that overlooked the river. On one side of the campsite  you are able to see an area where the local people from the village would come down and collect water from the river.

The task of collecting water is allocated mainly to the women, but the children also have a major share. When large quantities of water is need the men also get involved to help. All sorts of  transport are used to transport the water, by foot, on donkey back, donkey carts, even cattle dragging broken mokoros  (Local Tswana name for a dugout or canoe)  which would hold the containers of water within it. This unusual way of transporting water is seen in the background of my painting where a small boy is also seen hitching a ride in the mokoro , sometimes if the sandy road gets bumpy he has to hold the bottles so as to prevent them from falling over .

Monday, September 12, 2011

The abandoned house


During one of my road trips with my dad in South Africa, I took hundreds of pictures of houses, farms, fields, and mountains all while we were driving. Despite the fact that many of the photos turned out blurred, I still managed to capture quite a bit of good reference material. One of my photos was of an old abandoned house.
 I loved the rusty roof and the peeling paint on the walls, the green grass in the fore ground and the long dark shadows across it. It was one of those really easy paintings that I had loads of fun doing. The people who bought it had a special reason for doing so, they said that their cousin had a farm house that looked just like that and so wanted to buy it.
Abandoned places have always interest me, what was once a place of human habitation is now just an empty shell, a piece of history. Who lived there? What was life like? Why did they leave? Often the answers to such questions lie around the place in the form of clues .Exploring old sites of human habitation (something I love doing) often reveal something about the type of life they lived. Capturing such places in a photo or a painting is actually just capturing an echo from the past.