The Open Road … Where, exactly, is it taking you?

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I have written before about my love of roads in paintings. Simply put, I love roads. The road less traveled. Where the road may lead. The metaphorical representation of a journey. Memories of childhood road trips.

IMG_5509But the road has become even more important to me as time marches on. On the lighter side, I love adventure. I love going places and experiencing new things. Learning and growing from these experiences. I like how the changing of your backdrop (location) lets you examine yourself in a new light. The continual lessons of the road. But it is the inner journey that has become even more important to me and the metaphor of the road within. The outward journeys are as much about the inward journey as anything.

Life is one long journey and yet altogether too short. Who we are on that road? Who do we choose to surround ourselves with? Who will we love? What will we choose to stand for?  We all have our own choices of how we will view the world.

IMG_0424I believe in the words of Joseph Campbell: “You bring your own meaning to life; that is the meaning of life.” For me, that means time in nature and with my dog, with my beloved husband and cherished parents, friends and family.

It also involves a love of work. Work, I feel, is what we do in life to give back, and giving back is intrinsically woven into my meaning of life. My meaning comes from sharing my love of art, art as a language that gives voice to the voiceless, as an escape and as sheer, pure joy. Art saved me, not because I was in trouble but because I needed this language to fully communicate, and I know art can save others — if only in the appreciation of it, the joy of it. And so this is my road. And it’s the road I paint again and again.

This road becomes more precious, more dear as I get older, as life happens to me, and what is important is elevated.

Where will the road take you? What does it mean for you? I’d love your thoughts in the comments below! As for me, I shall keep traveling along, enjoying each moment as best as I can, ever, ever aware of the journey!

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About Stephanie Schlatter Art

Stephanie Schlatter is an Artist who draws from the world for inspiration. While she calls Grand Rapids, Michigan, home she’s often off on new adventures. For more than a decade, her journeys have taken her across the globe. She has studied art both locally and abroad, including time in Mexico, where she decided to shift her focus from photography to painting. Stephanie's travels led her to found Absolutely Art: A Project for Change in 2006. Through this non-profit organization, she brings art instruction to the children of Ethiopia while supporting their education. Stephanie's work reflects an expression influenced by other cultures which resonates a variety of influences that have given her work direction.

5 responses »

  1. Very nice. Vineyards are such a nice painting subject. Especially the peninsula. We have a new start-up vineyard/winery here in Croswell, 3 North Vines, and I am proud to say that one of my vineyard paintings hangs in the tasting room.

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