I use Modern American Realism- it’s capacity to give drama to detail, to bring out subtleties of human expression, and to put a subject into a symbolically fraught environment- in an exploration of the self as an island and in a depiction of innocence in the face of an overwhelming world.
Birds seem apt for denoting transitions since they carry with them the potential for flight: a movement between earth and sky. I use them as representations of a human counterpart because their duality not only functions to create tension between the many cultural meanings of the bird itself, but also illustrates the tension within the person.
To me, realism and being authentic in representation means being faithful to not only literal accuracies, but emotional, spiritual, or social truths about either my own life or the lives of those close to me.
The self is an island, but one that ironically becomes less lonely when we recognize that everyone else experiences similar forms of periodic isolation.