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Theory of Flight – Crows

Where there is one
There are likely a hundred or more to be found
Sometimes fragmenting in the distance
Sometimes swirling again in swift, perfect cadence
Creating the difficulty of distinguishing one
From another

Is it just us who embraces this shortcoming
Because we never really want to get close enough?

We wish for improbable flight
While the great assembly gathers above
Higher this time than last
Farther away
In dreams, mocked by the crows
Who know the great freedom
We rarely taste

nicolas hall 2011

Theories of Flight – Crows is one of a series of 24 images born out a recurring theme in my work the last few years.

The pursuit and futility of flight throughout our human existence.

Flight as freedom, flight as imagination, flight as a deep seeded desire and as the epitome of our own transformation. Yet we NEVER come close to the freedom of the birds above us.

Never that unbound
Never that pure.


  • TeresaClark
    TeresaClarkover 3 years ago

    Amazing! is this all encaustic?

    I love the concept and would like to see the other 21 images from your series -flight is very close to me and my personaly history…

  • The background is from an encaustic palette. Not intentional. Just the swirls of wax and colors mixed for application to a painting.

    I had no intention for them initially but, the fascinated me and then the landscapes seemed to start presenting themselves to me. It fit with this idea, theory of flight, that I have held as a working title for many yeas.

    The series is all going to be here. In time. :)

    Thank you SO much for taking the time to comment and look at these images. I am honored.

    I am intrigued by how flight, it’s ideals and forms, comes into play in peoples lives. Would love to hear more about YOUR theory of flight. :)


    – Nicolas Hall

  • TeresaClark
    TeresaClarkover 3 years ago

    It is amazing when an old, lengthy idea starts to materialize, yes? these look like if you had already done 20 of them, since the concept is all there and the execution looks mature… the background may have been done random but it does have a depth that only space in the air can have (I don’t know if that makes sense).

    When I was young I had the opportunity to fly small airplanes and actually got a private pilot’s licence. Very small airplanes are still machines that bind us to the ground but yet they are light enough to give a feel that bigger airplanes can´t, especially older ones, like from the 40’s, made of cloth and wood I got a couple of chances in those you get a different perspective of life and of yourself as an individual in the middle of such vastness, of your own fragility and at the same time of being a person commanding a machine that defies our nature -and is fragile by itself. That was a dream come true that soon broke up for me (and I was only a teenager), but it changed my whole way of facing life.

    Later I started scubadiving, which is kind of flying underwater, yet also with all the man made stuff that is ugly and limiting, but was also an experience worth a lifetime.

    My desire to paint finished with the physical activities like that -starving artists don´t scubadive nor fly, not even on airliners.

    My flights these days are only through my imagination.

  • TeresaClark
    TeresaClarkover 3 years ago

    Sorry, I did get a couple of chances, I don´t know why that appears with that line.

  • “it does have a depth that only space in the air can have " Yes, this makes perfect sense and is likely why I had such a strong desire to photograph something that was so unintentional. The fact that no attempt was made to “create”: them may have something to do with what I saw in them. And why they have been so integral to the series.

    I have always been frustrated by trying to capture the sky in art. Our sense fool us into thinking we grasp everything through them but, in truth, how can one capture the sky?

    And, like you, I only fly inside now but, if it makes any sense, I feel that those imaginings. . . some resurrected from the ashes of the childhoods we are told to leave behind, are the closest thing to flight. The more I follow that path and stay true to what I “know”, the more I find that I am feeling unbound and open.

    I loved air travel when I was young. I Also had recurring dreams of free falling from great heights and would often throw myself (in my sleep) into the air before the dream “impact”. I went skydiving once at 20. . . and those dreams abruptly ended.

    And more recently, I just learned to ride a bicycle at the age of 33. That felt like flying for a long time afterward. :).


    – Nicolas Hall

  • TeresaClark
    TeresaClarkover 3 years ago

    Capturing the sky in paint is impossible, yet some attempts are evoquing enough. And evoquing might be just what you feel about that childhood feeling.

    Bicycle huh? I might try it…

  • heinrich
    heinrichover 3 years ago

    where do we go from here….???

  • Another evolution will arise I am sure. . . as it always has. New ideas and new heights to scale. All the while the birds will remain. . . watching and waiting.

    Thank you again for your comments and for taking time to go through my artwork.


    – Nicolas Hall

  • colleeno
    colleenoalmost 3 years ago


desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

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