[The past few weeks] we stood at the threshold of a new series...EXILE!
Eric transported us into that harsh world, through the eyes of Antony, a Roman lad, uprooted from his comfortable, beloved home and sent far off, confused, bewildered.

In a search for a visual depiction which also may help us all to feel and sense a place as aliens, strangers, exiles. One such scene caught my eye and I was drawn to capture it on canvas.

It begins with a lone tree, bent, gnarled, weathered, set against a dark, foreboding sky. It conveys a sense of isolation and loneliness. A harsh, cruel wind whips at its leaves and branches seeking submission to the bleak environment. But somehow they cling defiantly, to declare their identity, holding firm with roots and grounding; holding fast in spite of rejection. The desert- like landscape is cold and bare and unwelcoming. Bone-chilling gloom settles in .

BUT WAIT! somehow the picture does not seem complete., something is missing!

A second canvas needs be added alongside this dismal landscape.

From afar, Peter speaks into the scene, and a strong element of hope and support is added. A future, as certain and solid as majestic mountains in the distance, a promise of another , better place appears. The sky clears and brightens, along with white clouds and golden rays of sun shining through. There - wingspan of a bird, soaring freely, then another and another. New - found strength and encouragement arise to journey on, to fly and be free, to reach the summit, to bask in the sun, to leave the land of exile and finally come home.

-Barb McLennan