I painted this piece at the Portland Chinese Garden on Father’s Day. The trip there for the afternoon, alone with my brushes, was a gift from my family. The symbols were carved into the side of the waterfall above this bridge. I went on to finish the ink over the next week or so and all the while I was turning the notion of bridges over in my mind.
It occurred to me that bridges are a great metaphor for personal relationships. They can be formed through the simplest of measures. Indeed sheer will is enough to build a bridge, as these ants demonstrate by using only their bodies and collective determination…
Over the years humans have built bridges out of nearly every material at our disposal. Rocks and trees were easy choices in the beginning but with those basic components we’ve accomplished massive endeavors; improving travel, commerce, and communication all over the world. In this way bridges embody our resourcefulness.
Thanks to nature’s demonstrations, we no longer consider an unmoving, stoic structure as optimal. Modern bridges are designed to move with the earth and its’ natural forces, not to resist them.
We see many of these same themes are important to relationships – simplicity, resourcefulness, and survivability.
What are the bridges you have built constructed of? Why were they built and what kind of storms can they weather?
Watercolor & Ink