Miles from Anywhere is a series in progress exploring the differences between being alone and being lonely. The idea of the differences sprang from previous imagery such as Branch Line and Hill Farm, but is probably a quietly flowing theme through a lot of my work.
Being alone is finding a sense of freedom in isolation. There is a certain fabulousness in being alone, enjoying your own company, doing your own thing. For me, being alone is food for my soul as I get to explore my ideas for imagery without the pressure of having to conform, be here or there, do for others or structure my thinking…its absolute freedom to think, explore and create. It also makes me appreciate having my loved ones around me when they are there with me. We need to experience both ends of the polarity to appreciate the other.
On the other hand, being lonely is an ache deep within us. Loneliness is the isolation created by unrequited needs. Loneliness is desperately wanting connection but not being able to create connection. Barriers block connections, like language, race, stereotyping, being judgemental, shyness, old age, disability, mental illness, envy and jealousy even anger. Loneliness can be quite destructive like a disease eating away at the framework of our soul destroying the hope and happiness that we all desire.
The places in Miles from Anywhere offer a sense of fun and happiness, a feeling of contentment, offering peace and quiet and a life fulfilled, tucked up inside these out of the way houses. They are not lonely places, but instead they are showing us how to be content with being alone. The viewer is gifted the luxury and freedom to soak up the ambience and do their own thing, to take time to enjoy exploring and imagining living here, and deciding what could happen next.