As an artist I am motivated by colour, by beauty in line and light, by captivating an image I see infront of me. I can’t change doing that, its how my brain works, its how I have honed my skills and talents and interests.
Last week whilst finally out in the big wide world after the enforced time I’ve had to stay in to rest my foot, I got chatting socially to a guy who I have met once before and then only briefly. This time I was able to have more of a chat with him and since he mentioned he had to be up early for work the next day it prompted me to ask what his job was…
“Fireman” he said. I raised my eyes and smiled and said what I thought was being observant but turned out to probably be a crass comment when I asked him if he enjoyed being a hero? I suppose he was used to that sort of comment, but he surprised me with his answer. I am used to talking to lots of different people from many diverse backgrounds, but I hadn’t expected the down to earth but spiritual answer he gave me. He explained that he didn’t consider himself a hero at all, very few firemen do, but they do the job because, well, no one else does. He felt that people need to ring someone in an emergency, someone who would go to their help, and rescue them from a situation that in a lot of cases is life changing. He felt that he was just pleased to be there to help anyone who needed it and didn’t want any accolades for it.
He did go on to say though that he was certainly an adrenaline junkie – he loved riding a motor bike, and practicing martial arts amongst his various interests, and that made me smile, as it fitted more the image that you would expect of a fireman. We agreed between us that we are both so used to the jobs we do, that you can’t help judging the world by your main interest in it.
He looked around the room we were in, and he made a comment of how many fire exits there were in it, and the material the ceiling was made of. I hadn’t considered either of those things, its not my vocation’s interest.
But I had noticed the way the artificial light had lit up a the people infront of me, and how I would draw them if I had the opportunity. I had noticed the interplay of colour and light, and form, and tones. I do it as automatically as he did his job. Its deep inside, and part of the person we are…..