Resting in the sand dunes here is an old clinker dinghy.
She is long and narrow with an elegant profile.
But with her wooden ribs rotting, her hull now holed, and her paint skin peeling, her days on the waves are clearly over.
Here on the dunes, she is literally pushing up daisies. Golden orange ones and fresh white ones.
Something about the way she lies though, suggests this vessel lived a rich life before being put to rest on the shore.
She has journeyed on early morning seas of glass, she has been kissed by soft sea mists, and she has endured the wrath of storm tossed oceans.
All this is written in her hull.
And to me, she out-pictures what boats represent to us.
Boats are vessels that carry us across life's ocean. They are the vehicles in which we embark on our life’s journey.
Sometimes they enable us to venture towards new horizons to discover landscapes pregnant with promise and potential,
and sometimes they just rock us gently as we drift - resting or waiting...going nowhere is particular.
The beautiful old bones of this retired clinker dinghy inspired a recent painting.
In the painting, she floats, without oars or anchor, on an endless ocean.
This empty old vessel is full of the possibility of becoming.
She is drifting, open to the currents that come to carry her – either to new purpose-imbued beginnings,
or to a gracious end in an oceanic graveyard.
A similar old clinker rowing boat lies at the centre of earlier watercolour I painted years ago.
This time though, the dinghy sits centred and stable, in the eye of huge wave-curl, surrounded and fed by life’s vital threads.
The seasoned dinghy is prepared and ready to enter the portal of fresh possibility that lies at the very centre of a powerful wave of change.
The Pod Boat
And a few years ago, I painted a very different boat.
The hull shape of this one echoes ancient double-ended vessels evident in many of our cultures.
Her cargo resembles seeds nestled safely in her seed-pod hull.
But the waves she rides are not of our oceans.
This Pod Boat seems to be riding the waves of the fabric of creation - and she is navigating by way of a magnetized matrix that is pulling her home.
I call her simply The Pod Boat.
She is a new vessel born of ancient lineage for today's potent times.
She is pioneering a pathway towards a fresh destination that is out of sight but within our knowing.
The boat paintings are telling today’s stories…
I painted these three boat paintings over a time span of two decades, yet they symbolize so much of our human journey right now.
We’re living amidst massive change on life’s great ocean.
Our old vessels and old ways, respected and time-tested though some may be, are up for re-assessment.
We sit poised in the centre of an unprecedented wave of change.
We are becoming aware of new vessels that can carry us by different means towards expanded dimensions.
But to journey there requires the trust to act on what we know but can’t yet see.
Now is our opportunity to discover what really floats our boats.