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What Can You See?

Last week we became the proud owners of an original Moira Drosdovech painting, entitled ‘Friendly Encounter’. (See photo above.) I am particularly thrilled because I have been an admirer of Moira’s work for some time, and the many hues of its richly textured canvas make a fine addition to our home, bringing all the light and joy depicted in the scene.

Art’s a funny thing though, isn’t it? Beauty is very much in the eye of the beholder and I guess our personal tastes differ wildly from what others may prefer to adorn their walls. I have been reflecting upon this, particularly in relation to colour and form, and would make the following observations.

It seems to me that an artist’s use of vivid colours may be a representation of their state of being. The wilder the colour combinations, perhaps the more colourful the individual. The brighter the scheme used, perhaps the sunnier and more positive the disposition and outlook of the painter. The more abstract the form, perhaps the greater flexibility of perception within the creator. The more unusual/charming the treatment of the subject matter, perhaps the higher level of empathy with what the originator sees before them.

Broad generalisations? Perhaps. Nonetheless, it was with great pleasure that I noted Moira’s artwork bedecked the vendor table that greeted visitors to our sanctuary open day, last weekend. Resplendent in their bold use of colour and form, these cheery and uplifting paintings symbolically invited all-comers to suspend their preconceptions and view all that they would see with fresh, unencumbered minds.

At least, that would be my interpretation.

I guess we see what we want to see, or what our dispositions allow us to process. Of the two hundred plus people who passed through the sanctuary, I met and was actively engaged by maybe two dozen who seemed to share my enthusiasm for the animals; who found their visit thoroughly worthwhile, and truly appreciated being in the presence of the gentle and inspiring creatures at the sanctuary.

Sadly, for others their visit was apparently somewhat perfunctory. Perhaps they had come to gawp. Perhaps they sought to find amusement or distraction from otherwise dull lives. This group, at best seemed mildly interested. I wondered if they found the animals before them worthy of even fleeting consideration. Did they even see them as sentient beings, full of emotions and zest for life? If so, they didn’t show it. Cynically, I speculated that when they chose to wander away from the tour, there was no pause for thought about the living entities they had seen and shared a moment with, and no connection with those whose flesh they would happily gorge upon later on.

As if to confirm my worst fears, I would learn the day after the event that my brief talk to our guests, explaining our reasoning for having the sanctuary (even though delivered in the most 'sanitised' and un-didactic way possible) was reported as “lecturing”.

Clearly, this is another example of the way we see things. Maybe anything that challenges an individual’s personal comfort zone or seems to challenge their unique view of the acceptable status quo must be derided or dismissed because it is threatening? This also is something I have reflected upon, but drawing conclusions becomes somewhat more difficult, due to my overwhelming bias in the way I perceive the world.

I am in the Moira Drosdovech camp in what I chose to see. Life is colourful and meaningful. It is rich and multi-textured, if we do not trivialise and debase it by imposing inane and outdated constrictions upon our outlook. Becoming prisoners of pernicious precedent, forcing us to automatically accept the status quo, is unworthy of a free spirit and a thinking mind. This world is not ours. We are merely passing through it and the only thing we have a right to determine is what course our own life may take. We share the planet with beings that are every bit as important and meaningful as ourselves. In order to appreciate this, we must extend our belief systems in an unbridled fashion and encompass, embrace, or at least show tolerance for, ideas that are outside of the norm.

Moira Drosdovech's pictures reflect all of this. Can you see it?

To see more of Moira's artwork, or even purchased your own uplifting piece, visit

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