Kat Skinner of the /r/artistcommunity group submitted the June challenge with the topic Hunger. Hunger is such a powerful and thought provoking word. I spent a lot of time thinking about it trying to decide how I would interpret it.
The first thing that comes to mind is food scarcity and the very real struggle of so many of our fellow humans around the world to access adequate nutrition. That is not, however, the deeper meaning that stuck with me as I contemplated this challenge.
Hunger, to me, talks about a deep and insatiable longing–some want or need that cannot be filled.
I have viewers from around the world, and I don’t want to presume the religious experiences of anyone. I imagine that people who read my blog or watch my videos have wonderfully diverse cultural and spiritual backgrounds. I was raised in a Christian household. So I would like to share a story from Christianity that inspired the image I chose to represent the Hunger challenge.
In the Bible there is a story of Adam and Eve, depicted as the first humans created by God to live in the idyllic Garden of Eden. These humans had their every need provided for them by God who came to visit them and talk with them. They were allowed to do whatever they wanted except one thing–they were not to eat the fruit of The Tree of Knowledge.
As time passed, so the story tells, Eve was tempted by a snake in the garden to eat the fruit of that tree, which she eventually did. In the Bible, the fruit is not named, but it is often symbolically represented by an apple.
The story of Adam and Eve is part of the creation story of Christianity that explains how humans fell out of favor with God. To me, the story illustrates how people are never satisfied. Having all of their needs provided for, these first humans could not resist the one thing that was denied them and were ultimately banished from Paradise because of it.
Some things never change, do they? So often, it feels like nothing is ever good enough and we are always longing for something else–anything else–everything else. It is in that spirit that I decided to paint the simple apple.
I’ve wanted to do another work with the oil pastels and found this the perfect subject. The picture is created on 9″x12″ watercolor paper. You can watch my process in the time lapse video below.