Growing in Rocky Ground (Landscape Conceptual Painting in Pastel)

Growing in Rocky Ground (Landscape Conceptual Painting in Pastel)

Growing in Rocky Ground (pastel) by Polly Castor

This painting is called Growing in Rocky Ground, and is a very metaphoric piece. It is 12″x16″ and is done in pastel.

The tree is tenaciously surviving, even though its roots reach for purchase, sprawling above ground in all directions to get to where they can burrow into the earth. The Bible says that when seeds fall into stoney ground it is no good, and I agree it is not ideal, but often, I think it should be noted, they do find a way to flourish, regardless of the challenges facing them. When they do, they have so much more character, are interesting and beautiful in their own way. Many people have had “rocky” childhoods, and can relate. Some might say they are scarred forever, although that seems to depend more on attitude and choices about how to respond to those conditions. Like the tree in the painting, I am holding that it is possible to do well anyway.

To emphasize this, I used amplified colors in purple, greens and blues, cheerily showing that there is no sadness or apology here, only creative management, proud carriage, victorious in stance and outreach. The leaf litter took time to paint with light-filled smaller dots in the background, and warmer, larger, crisper ones to the front. I had a good time doing this painting, and love the metaphor.

See the whole painting above and details below. You can buy the original painting here, and prints and merchandise with it on it is available here.


I work to amplify good wherever I find it. I love color, texture, beauty, great ideas, nature, metaphor, deliciousness, genuine spirituality, and exploring new territory. I encourage authenticity, nurture creativity, champion sustainability, promote peace, and hope to foster a new renaissance where we all are free to be our most fulfilled, multifaceted, and terrific selves. Read more here.


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