Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Passion and Pain

I need to get this off my chest. I have been upset and angry for some time now and perhaps I just need to write this down and hope that it will help alleviate these feelings. So, please forgive me while I vent and rant about a subject that clouds my mind with passion and pain.

It is no big secret that I absolutely love animals. Doing a wildlife painting, no matter how long it takes, is my way of trying to show that passion. I am smouldering about what is happening in our world where we so easily decide the fate of other species - for no other reason than politics and greed.

Elephants! Magnificent, majestic, powerful and absolutely vulnerable once again. I am not going to list pages of facts about elephants, their family ties, communication, etc. Instead, I will list links at the end of the post about what is happening to these animals and what we humans do so easily to satisfy our greed.

Before I place the links, please take a look at these photographs.

Beautiful, eh? Useful and ingenious ways to improve the quality of our lives. Ivory.
How can we live without these stunning examples of skill and beauty?

How much does it cost to possess such beauty?

Who are the people who desire these objects of art and beauty?

I wonder if they think of the cost when they run their fingers along the smooth surface and admire the skill and genius of the carver.

Somehow, I don't think the cost is of any concern to them.

It cannot be that they are ignorant of the cost. They just don't care, do they? And, if they don't care about the cost, what is next on their list of items they must have? Demand and supply.

While certain members of the Useless Nimcompoops rub their hands in anticipation of great riches, us poor peasants must appreciate that at least we will still have photographs and paintings to remind us of beautiful beasts that shared this world with us.

We can run our fingers along the smooth surface of the photograph or feel the texture on a painting and wonder at the beauty and glory of elephants, rhino, tigers, cheetahs and an endless list of species we once had.

Unless we make our voices heard. Stop China from Trading Ivory

Wildlife Direct

Elephant Information

Elephant Voices

How the ivory trade funds bloodshed

Warlords turn to ivory trade to fund slaughter of humans

Return of the ivory trade


Baker Watson said...

I know it felt good to be able to vent and let off a bit of steam. This is an issue everyone should be concerned about. When real public pressure is brought to bear on these culprits, both the poachers and consumers of the product, perhaps we will see some results.

Avril Brand said...

Thank you, Baker. It's really all about demand and supply. I am tired of hearing sob stories about 'poachers having no choice'. The people who are happy to use ivory products, rhino horn and animal skins are happy to support murderous dictators like Mugabe and his allies. They know who they are and so do WE.

We need to treat the owners and buyers of these products with the revulsion they deserve. They are criminals.

I guess I still have some venting to do! :)

Thanks again for the visit, Baker. It always does me good to hear from you. :)

Sandpiper (Lin) said...

You have a wonderful blog and great talent in your art work. You've touched on a subject here that is dear to my heart. Thanks for posting such a good essay.
It's nice to meet you.

Avril Brand said...

Hi Lin

Thanks for visiting and your great comment. And thank you for supporting this important subject.

Your blog is absolutely stunning and you are a very talented photographer!

Its a pleasure and privilege to meet you too.


GK16 said...

Hi Avril, this is the second time I’m visiting your blog to make a comment on this post. My first attempt was totally unsuccessful. I felt as if I have lost words to express myself. This is a very serious issue. I really feel sorry for these poor creatures. Anyway I am happy that there’re kind hearted people like you. Our earth needs more like you.

Avril Brand said...

Gk, I know exactly what you mean. It often happens to me too that I am so overwhelmed that I don't know what to say. Sometimes, only days later or in the middle of the night, I find a way to express my feelings.

Thank you GK - every voice helps :)

Dana said...

This is heartbreaking, both what is done to the animals and what is done to the men who hurt them. The animals are a reflection of the lack of value for life and the savageness of their survival.

A-your art honors the sacred in the animal AND the viewer. Please don't turn from that to gaze at this horror, it can only bring more horror. Thank you for holding us up so that we may rise out of our own self-hatred and fear and see the sacred in ourselves and the world around us.

Avril Brand said...

Thank you, Dana

That is so true and I appreciate your wisdom. I try to see the beauty around me but sometimes it's hard when we humans treat this world as a plaything.

I will always try to show the nobility and beauty of all the creatures we share this earth with.

Thank you and bless you for your wonderful words.

slb said...

Hi Avril, I just read your comment on WD and wanted to thank you for drawing the line from point A (the announcement about culls in SA) to point B (CITES approving China to trade in ivory). I knew it wasn't a coincidence, and I know wonder if Dr. Leakey will change his stance on the SA culls?


Avril Brand said...

Hi slb

Thanks for that! I think people are fed up of being led by the nose like eejits. I suspected something like this to happen, just did not know when. I certainly hope Dr Leakey will take a different stance.

I know my country and its people.. and I know how politicians think. They just imagine we are too stupid to read between the lines.

Rambling Woods said...

I came via Baker's blog..I don't understand how we can treat a very intelligent animal like elephants in that manner. But as I am reminded those same people place no value on human life either...

Avril Brand said...

Hi rambling woods... Baker has a great blog - I wish I could visit more often :)

You are right about that, rambling! They have no respect or value for life.