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barnburner
11-19-2010, 08:01 AM
If this were a regular novel, this painting is the one I would use on the cover. To me, it captures the essence of what this series is all about, going forth into the unknown to make a new life. Leaving family and friends, facing whatever comes with only each other to count on.

Actually, I started out to paint a more expansive scene, with Sean and Mariska just outside the village as they left, with the village in the background, and lots of tribal members waving goodbye.
I painted the horses large, intending to reduce them in size to fit the scene, but when I saw them in the closeup view against the sky, I knew this version was what I wanted.

Into The Unknown

“Are you ready for this?”

Sean's question was directed to himself, as much as Mariska. It's one thing to think about what you will do “someday”. It's quite another to be faced with the reality of today, and realize that when you set out on that journey, you will be facing whatever the unknown brings, with only each other to count on.
As winters go, this one proved to be better than most. There were some bad snowstorms, but they also had several warm days, allowing the men to hunt. Game was scarce, but thanks to what meat they were able to bring in, the Mohegan people endured less hunger this winter than normal.
As the Mohegan warriors had been out in the surrounding country in all times of the year, Sean eagerly sought their advice. One thing they all agreed on - “Do not wait too late in the Spring to go. You will have streams to cross, and when the spring floods hit, you may find yourselves stranded, having to wait days, or weeks, before you can cross.”
Mariska's father gave them a horse to use as a packhorse. He argued with great sincerity, that the old Mare was too old to be of any service other than as a packhorse, so he was giving it to them. Mariska looked into her father's eyes, laughed, and kissed him on the cheek... “You my father, are a liar, but we accept your gift and relieve you of this weighty burden of this useless horse.” she said with great affection.
All the goodbyes had been said last night at the celebration of their journey. Now they have stopped just outside the village,for a look at the sky offering both great promise and without a doubt, great dangers and sorrow.


In answer to Sean's question, Mariska answers confidently, “Of course I'm ready. Where you go, I go. Our fate awaits us out there. It's our future and we cannot have it unless we go forth to take it. Whatever the good and whatever the bad lie ahead, they are ours to face, and we will face them together.

And so, they went.

Alexandra
11-19-2010, 08:06 AM
Very good Mike, looking forward to another adventure!

Lima
11-19-2010, 08:12 AM
this painting is the one I would use on the cover. Barn it is wonderful.

AT-TA
11-19-2010, 10:19 AM
But Barney, where they were going? Once you are leaving, you usually know where you want to arrive. Or did i miss something.
Painting is really captivating...i love the whole atmosphere. And i can feel the pain in Mariska's heart, leaving the security of her own tribe. Been there, done that... and it hurts ...sometime forever.

Jasminek
11-19-2010, 10:44 AM
I love the way you wrote about the "useless horse". Actually, such custom was very Asian at one time until the money and capitalism invaded.
Mother who is 84 years old still gives things away that way:eek:

Well done.:)

barnburner
11-19-2010, 10:49 AM
Very good Mike, looking forward to another adventure!

Sandy, thank you very much. Very much appreciated. :)

barnburner
11-19-2010, 10:50 AM
this painting is the one I would use on the cover. Barn it is wonderful.


Thank you so much Oriane... I very much appreciate
your generous comment. :)

barnburner
11-19-2010, 10:56 AM
But Barney, where they were going? Once you are leaving, you usually know where you want to arrive. Or did i miss something.
Painting is really captivating...i love the whole atmosphere. And i can feel the pain in Mariska's heart, leaving the security of her own tribe. Been there, done that... and it hurts ...sometime forever.

I suppose I should have made that clearer before now.
They have no definite destination in mind, other than generally - west. Because of his experiences in Ireland and again in Boston, Sean wants to go somewhere where he and Mariska can make a future for themselves based on what they do, not where they came from, what nationality, race, etc..
Probably falls under the category of "They will know it, when they find it". :)
Thanks so much AT.. Very much appreciated. :)

barnburner
11-19-2010, 10:59 AM
I love the way you wrote about the "useless horse". Actually, such custom was very Asian at one time until the money and capitalism invaded.
Mother who is 84 years old still gives things away that way:eek:

Well done.:)

Good to hear that background..
Giving people something they needed, under the pretense of having no need for it,etc., was something I grew up with, so the idea came to me naturally.
Thank you very much Jasmine. :)

jibes
11-19-2010, 12:53 PM
Very, very well done!

barnburner
11-19-2010, 03:40 PM
Very, very well done!

Neal, I appreciate that very much. Glad you liked it. :)

Caesar
11-20-2010, 12:04 AM
This illustration is very effective and meaningful, as You say, and beautiful. You're right the look small compared to the horses, like a couple of hobbits, but the horses don't appear to be of the smaller dappled mustang type.
I just wonder what is Sean's vision of their future and target for life and I hope that he shared it with Mariska, even not telling us clearly.
It's curious to hear Mariska statement to sound substantially similar to the traditional answer of an ancient Roman new bride before entering his husband home in the last phases od the ceremony:"Ubi tu Gaius, et ego Gaia!" i.e. literally "Where You Gaius, me too Gaia" (the feminine form of Gaius). It indicates, in the most synthetic form and engaging and firm way, the willingness to fully share the doom oh the husband.
By the way, the word "gaius, gaia, gaium" (masculine, feminine and neutral) means cheerful, merry or even gay, before this term was sort of monopolized in English to indicate homosexuals (I'm still not sure whether only male ones or both), quite curiously since anyone may be gay independently of sexual tastes (or no sexual interest) and gays didn't have too much reasons to feel so up to recent times and they still don't, especially in many places of the earth where untolerance is by law. :rolleyes::(

barnburner
11-20-2010, 02:09 AM
This illustration is very effective and meaningful, as You say, and beautiful. You're right the look small compared to the horses, like a couple of hobbits, but the horses don't appear to be of the smaller dappled mustang type.
I just wonder what is Sean's vision of their future and target for life and I hope that he shared it with Mariska, even not telling us clearly.
It's curious to hear Mariska statement to sound substantially similar to the traditional answer of an ancient Roman new bride before entering his husband home in the last phases od the ceremony:"Ubi tu Gaius, et ego Gaia!" i.e. literally "Where You Gaius, me too Gaia" (the feminine form of Gaius). It indicates, in the most synthetic form and engaging and firm way, the willingness to fully share the doom oh the husband.
By the way, the word "gaius, gaia, gaium" (masculine, feminine and neutral) means cheerful, merry or even gay, before this term was sort of monopolized in English to indicate homosexuals (I'm still not sure whether only male ones or both), quite curiously since anyone may be gay independently of sexual tastes (or no sexual interest) and gays didn't have too much reasons to feel so up to recent times and they still don't, especially in many places of the earth where untolerance is by law. :rolleyes::(

I'm not all that certain that Sean has a definite target set out yet. Mostly whatever vision he has, has been acrued "on the run", and certainly shaped by necessity, realizing that to some extent, his future has to start from a bare and meager beginning. They are going into unknown country, with no idea of towns, what Indian tribes (friendly or not friendly), etc..
As a great many do today, the steps they will take 6 months from now will be shaped and defined by the steps they take along the way to that point. We have to remember that this was a much slower paced time, where a full days travel might only cover 10 to 20 miles, so there was less pressure, or necessity, to have firm long term goals early on.

Caesar, thanks for following along and I appreciate your kind comments. :)

kenmo
11-20-2010, 04:01 AM
Magnificent work....

barnburner
11-20-2010, 05:12 AM
Magnificent work....

Many thanks Ken... Most certainly appreciated!
Glad you are following the series. :)

Gray
11-20-2010, 06:36 AM
I've missed everything up to now story wise, and I'm rather sorry for that. Too much school. This painting and story carry quite a new perspective for me on the west. I'm so used to thinking about old America as this savage, dog-eat-dog world. It's good to have family values and actual relationships thrown against that wild backdrop. It's more believable for me all of a sudden, I can understand how people lived in that day and age.

barnburner
11-20-2010, 08:31 AM
I've missed everything up to now story wise, and I'm rather sorry for that. Too much school. This painting and story carry quite a new perspective for me on the west. I'm so used to thinking about old America as this savage, dog-eat-dog world. It's good to have family values and actual relationships thrown against that wild backdrop. It's more believable for me all of a sudden, I can understand how people lived in that day and age.

If you wish to read the other chapters, they are all together here:
http://barnburner1946.deviantart.com/gallery/27049946
I'm truly glad you feel this is helping with your understanding of the settlement of the west.
Thanks for your very kind words. Much appreciated. :)

justjean
11-20-2010, 02:21 PM
Barn, I think those of us that have had ancestors arrive in North America from other lands understand that they travelled until they found a spot that they felt they could survive and be happy in.My ancestors first landed in the Maritimes, then to Quebec and then to Ontario and points west :)

I am enjoying reading even if sometimes I have to read a few paragraphs together :D

And your choice of book cover will be great, it leaves a feeling of danger and bravery :)

barnburner
11-20-2010, 03:04 PM
Barn, I think those of us that have had ancestors arrive in North America from other lands understand that they travelled until they found a spot that they felt they could survive and be happy in.My ancestors first landed in the Maritimes, then to Quebec and then to Ontario and points west :)

I am enjoying reading even if sometimes I have to read a few paragraphs together :D

And your choice of book cover will be great, it leaves a feeling of danger and bravery :)

Yeah, you make a good point. It was a very un-structured frontier. Very few pre-defined roles waiting for people. People moved west until they found land, work, or community that suited them.
Some had to move many times before finding a situation/location that worked for them. I know my
ancesters were involved in that movement west and they, or their children kept moving west. Irish on my mothers side, and German on my fathers side.

So glad to hear that you are enjoying the story. Knowing there are people out there that like it, feeds me inspiration. Thank you so much. :)

Mairzie Dotes
11-22-2010, 08:36 AM
barnburner,
To walk alone through life is to venture forward without a heart
and yes as you have mentioned, Sean and Mariska do have a
destination in mind ... for whatever experiences they might face
on this journey into the future, they will share each turn in the
road together. For this couple ... to seek a destination would no
doubt be a fruitless, empty endeavor if traveled alone. :)

A beautifully painted work that poignantly exemplifies and
compliments the story line and adventure. :)

screenpainter
11-22-2010, 11:56 AM
Barney, I agree this would be the cover. Great image!

barnburner
11-22-2010, 01:06 PM
barnburner,
To walk alone through life is to venture forward without a heart
and yes as you have mentioned, Sean and Mariska do have a
destination in mind ... for whatever experiences they might face
on this journey into the future, they will share each turn in the
road together. For this couple ... to seek a destination would no
doubt be a fruitless, empty endeavor if traveled alone. :)

A beautifully painted work that poignantly exemplifies and
compliments the story line and adventure. :)


M.D., as usual, you have beautifully explained what I've tried to convey. What the couple are seeking is their life together, and the destination(s) will be a natural part of that process.

Thank you so much for your very kind comments.
Very much appreciated. :)

barnburner
11-22-2010, 01:09 PM
Barney, I agree this would be the cover. Great image!

My plan at this point, is to compile the entire series into a pdf file when it's finished. If so, this will indeed
be the cover shot.
Thank you very much. I truly appreciate it. :)

coops
11-26-2010, 10:36 AM
Once again well done Barnburner, terrific work:)

barnburner
11-26-2010, 03:22 PM
Once again well done Barnburner, terrific work:)

Coops, I am very happy that you fine this interesting
enough to follow. I most certainly appreciate it. :)

waheednasir
12-01-2010, 05:42 PM
i like the composition. good work..:).

barnburner
12-02-2010, 01:29 AM
i like the composition. good work..:).

I appreciate that very much. Thank you! :)