I call this painting “Lupus in Fabula”.
It is Latin for “The wolf in the story” – meaning “speak of the wolf, and he will come”.
One of my earliest memories was a dream I had as a child.
I was always drawing when I was little. More than anything, I loved to make pictures – all I wanted was to draw well. Even at that early age, I understood that the drawings I made did not look like the things I wanted to draw – the things I saw in my mind. There was some kind of disconnect between my hand and my imagination. How could I close the gap? I remember looking at a reindeer I made – lopsided circle for a body, sticks for legs and something that looked like TV antennas on top of its head. That didn’t look anything like the animal I saw in my imagination.
Then one night, I had a dream.
I was sitting at a table in front of a blank piece of paper. Someone behind me guided my hand as I drew the head of a wolf. They spoke to me in a calm, reassuring voice “It’s easy… you see?” And it was. The wolf looked like a wolf – not a lopsided circle with dark holes for eyes… it had a snout, fur and pointed ears. It was a wolf.
I woke up, grabbed a pencil and paper – and I drew a wolf.
Just like that.
In The Secret Kingdom, I think it’s fitting that the poem I wrote for “Lupus in Fabula” came to me while I was asleep.
I must have been dreaming of wolves again.