james Earley oil painting

The Story Behind Black and Red Lines

The girl lives on the streets of New York, she is the same girl as in my painting Mary but I wanted this painting to be completely different to Mary. The key to the picture and the story is the silence, solitude and the precious memories of child hood emerging in the tragic plight of homelessness. I wanted the back ground to enhance these emotions, to bring out the silence and concentration of reading the newspaper, portray the child hood emotions that accompany the scooter as well as silently scream the issue of homelessness. I chose black and red to do this and I also used the title “Black and Red Lines” without any reference to the girl as a means to show how the homeless were in many ways invisible. I also changed the newspaper headline from “Hispanic Heritage Month” to “Homeless Heritage Month” to show how homelessness was both deep rooted and accepted. Finally I added the call “Look at me Mum”. I do not know how a mother would feel seeing her daughter on the streets of New York, there is always a huge story behind each person but I think that this emotion would feel like a shard of glass brushing your heart.

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