Miniature in the Mail #62: "Life in the Real World"

"Life in the Real World," 5x5in., oil on masonite

It's hard times for those of us who care, who pay attention, who remember and haven't been desensitized.  Just maintaining a sense of humanity and a foot in reality has become a form of resistance.

I know social media is awash with urgings to read this and that doomsday piece and that the only way to keep your sanity is to filter most of it (my strategy, I'll be honest), but a piece in the Guardian by George Monbiot, who I'm not usually crazy about, hit me harder than usual. The short article, "Our greatest peril? Screening ourselves off from reality," somehow combines what I've been scared to death of politically with what I've been hoping to express with my art, and those concerns don't normally come together as nicely.

Monbiot writes, "The shrinking of our contact with the tangible world has taken place at a speed to which we struggle to adapt, with consequences we cannot yet grasp. The outdoor childhoodsurban or ruralthat people of my age enjoyed are seen by our children in the same light as extinct mastodons and public hangings: exotic, frightening and impossibly distant. For those who still see the rainbow arcing over the town while everyone else is buried in their phones, life in the real world can feel lonely."

If you manage to read the article, I'd be interested in knowing whether it affects you the same as it did me.

For this mini painting and others like it, all of which I work hard to experience beyond the screen in significant ways, check out