Sometimes life has its owns plans.
Sierra Leone will never leave my soul. As a young man growing up on the shores of West Africa, I believed I would never venture far from it, in the physical sense at least.
The last two decades of my life brought with it some normal and some not so normal circumstances, making it tricky to go back and visit family and friends. Factor in trying to build a career, pregnancies (that’s the wife, not me) civil unrest, ebola and various pandemics; trying to sync those determinants I found to be less hit and more miss!
Murray Town in Freetown will forever be my home. A two bedroom bungalow overlooking Kingtom Power Station across White Man’s Bay. It is always at the forefront of my mind. From the moment I wake up, until my evening’s rest …thoughts abound. Colourful reflections filled with culture, history and sound; I am always proud to talk about my accent, the background. It inspires my art and is core to my creative approach. Long may it all continue.
Those who know me well, are never surprised that I have a love-hate relationship with social media. While grateful for its inception, I am also of the notion that with every positive leap, there is often in equal measure the negative. I find its suffocation of organic growth oppressive, rewarding the users performance with measured exposure and calculated favour. Simply put, when you pay, you sway; there I said it! For stubborn heads like myself, the natural approach will only reach less than 10% of my ‘followers’. If you are of a certain age, I will spare you the extras. A link to my gentle rants if you are still intrigued…
“Is it hot in here or is it just you?”
For parents trying their best, we share a common goal; the knowledge that our decision-making impacts our children. From past journeys, we try to share our learnings (including the pitfalls) to these growing individuals without wanting to stifle their freedom of will. This approach does come with a caveat. However hard we resist, somehow our parents end up sounding like us 😉… they are shamans I tell you! No matter how well intended our perceptions or eloquent the advice, it seem our ‘pearls of wisdom’ acquired by hard graft, bad decision making, wrong diets, corny chat-up lines and the many other serious aspects to life, are met with raised eyebrows or simply as being out-of-touch. I am told that a certain search engine or social platform holds all the answers …based on human coded algorithms of course. Don’t say I never warned you!
So what are these conscious acts?
They are reflections.
Whatever situation or decision I find myself facing, advice always comes to the fore in the Krio language. The ever-wise elder sat around a gentle fire in a darkened corner of my soul is my first point of contact. Some call it instinct, others call it cabin fever 🙃. Either way, you have time to think for yourself and not be told how to think; you get my drift!
I go searching, waiting on a reply, a vision of some kind. In the silence, I wander, wonder where I’ll end up. Past acquaintances, no details, are all entangled in the turmoil of creation. Their essence blocking in the form; elements layering one upon the other. These pictures go hand in hand with their titles. They come from within. Old voices. Stories. Whispers of parables from a moment long ago. My very own search engine cataloguing a visual diary, found using key words of mantra. Its subliminal framework corralling the memory. You don’t have to pay for the effort, nor take a bribe for a like. The diary page is shared freely and left open for you to take from it what you will.
Prints will soon be available for purchase in my Etsy shop page. Thank you.