The reference for this painting was a photo I took of my son when he was about seven years old, wandering ahead of me on a verdant forest path on Cortes Island. As the giant sword ferns almost engulfed him, he reminded me of Mowgli from the Jungle Book. The summer morning sunlight provided a protective feeling of warmth.
In Khalil Gibran’s well known poem about children he says: You may house their bodies but not their souls, for their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams. You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you. For life goes not backward, nor tarries with yesterday.
My son turns sixteen this month and is now ambling his way towards being an independent adult. Arlo will not be my little boy forever, but I am happy that I have had the privilege to accompany him on this magical childhood path. I am so curious to see where it leads.
Original: 18″ x 24″, Acrylic on canvas