Two women with umbrellas approach one another in Miyagawa-cho, Kyoto. One is a young woman who happens to be a maiko. Her gait is fluid, she walks tall and her umbrella is the colour of sakura (cherry blossom). She radiates ease and elegance. The woman at the other end of the street is rather a contrast. She is in the shadows, her back is bent and her walk is arthritic. Her clothes are utilitarian and her umbrella is black.
Step by step youth strides out. Each day in a life is such a small unit of time. We don’t even think about time as we busy ourselves. How the months fly by! January is suddenly June and … how did it get to be November? In no time at all old age can be seen up ahead approaching with certainty. Well, we are the fortunate ones who can see our older selves approaching…it means we are still alive.
Literally the drawing depicts two women walking towards one another. Metaphorically it alludes to life paths, the passage of time and (ultimately) mortality…but only if you want it to.
Seconds after I digitally captured an image which froze two figures in time, their paths crossed. They greeted and bowed to one another with sincerity and mutual respect.
Afterword: “Step by Step” has won the $2000 EXPY and CPSA (Colored Pencil Society of America) Great Explorations and Best of Show Award. 1st February, 2015. The link to the exhibition is here http://www.cpsa.org/view-explore-this-11/awards-winners-et11
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