Portion of Surrender, 2016, watercolor: A commission inspired by the scene of releasing the oars in the 2000 movie Cast Away.

I feel his anguish as I paint. The hunger, the sting of salt, the despair. When there is nothing left to say or do, just shadows of essence barely clinging to the horizon.

Then, the letting go.

When every last vestige of control slips irrevocably into churning depths. When everything you fear most emerges from the shadows and swallows you in one terrible moment of awareness.

There is nothing left to release.

And then suddenly, shockingly, as if emerging from a cocoon, all that emptiness explodes; and the sky can’t expand fast enough to hold this freedom.

As I paint, I am there with him; and for one glorious moment, like the rays of setting sun, I dance on the water.


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