How Artworks Helped Write The Father

“When a scene clicks on stage, or the chisel reveals life in stone, or equations lift to fly from a page, it’s the same. That same sense of awe.”

Like Cotopaxi

Like Cotopaxi, © 1996 Brett Williams (24" x 48")

In The Father a character named Morgan is a sculptor. He’s also a scientist with an interest in acting. He makes a realization with the remark quoted above. The Father’s author, Brett Williams, couldn’t agree more (naturally – given he made Morgan say this). Williams is an oil painter and used paintings he created as occasional source, reference, and inspiration for descriptions of setting and place throughout The Father. (For the utility of science and engineering in the writing craft see, How science helped illuminate the story. For character development through acting go here.)

Of course, one can employ face-to-face experiences with nature, photography or their own imagination. But the author discovered that getting in the imagery he was trying to describe on paper could also be done on canvas at home or in nature of a wilderness. Even if only a portion of a scene could be found in an otherwise unrelated painting - completed or in work - reimagining the painting in words could help the writing. Like, “Hung by vines having strangled their host, jungle tree branches, like arms pulled from a man, swayed bodiless in the air.” (see the painting More Than The Rainforest below) Or, “Behind the Magician a magnified full moon rose, dwarfed by their monolithic manmade mountain.” (see the painting Pharaohs Dream below). And, “Shadow soldiered over land and its irregular contours in a muscular march about to push over the house.” (see the painting “Tribute To My Home” below)

“Even describing common clouds, rocks, or the texture and curve of clothing,” says Williams, “can be aided through methods invented when painting as one strives for bigger than life effects.” (see paintings Like Cotopaxi above, a tribute to Frederic Church’s Cotopaxi, and Portal, Eyes Of Castolon Peak, American Ethic, and African Warrior below).

Gold in the Southwest

Gold in the Southwest, © 2019 Brett Williams (18" x 24")

More Than The Rainforest

More Than The Rainforest, © 1995 Brett Williams (30" x 36")

Tribute To My Home

Tribute To My Home, © 2001 Brett Williams (18" x 30")

Sierra Moon

Sierra Moon, © 2019 Brett Williams (10" x 30")

Big Sur Sunset

Big Sur Sunset, © 2018 Brett Williams (12" x 24")

Pharaohs Dream

Pharaohs Dream, © 1995

(30" x 40")

Portal, © 1995

(36" x 48")
Eyes Of Castolon Peak

Eyes Of Castolon Peak, © 1991

(24" x 36")

American Ethic

American Ethic, © 1989

(24" x 30")
African Warrior

African Warrior, © 1990

(24" x 30")

Morning Glorious

Morning Glorious, © 2018 Brett Williams (12" x 24")

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle, © 1981

(16" x 20")
We Fish Togther

We Fish Togther, © 1991

(20" x 16")
Country Apostle

Country Apostle, © 1991

(16" x 20")

Center Of Attention

Center Of Attention, © 1996 Brett Williams (24" x 48")

Fatal Decision

Fatal Decision, © 1990 Brett Williams (24" x 40")

Stealer And The Comet

Stealer And The Comet, © 1988 Brett Williams (24" x 30")

Fosseys Memory

Fosseys Memory, © 1990

(18" x 22")
3 Rams

3 Rams, © 1980

(16" x 20")

Grandpa And Me

Grandpa And Me, © 1985 Brett Williams (24" x 30")


Tag, © 1991

(16" x 20")
Heaven Sent

Heaven Sent, © 1992

(18" x 20")
Falcon Overlook

Falcon Overlook, © 1991

(36" x 24")

The Setting Son

The Setting Son, © 1994 Brett Williams (18" x 24")


Impasse, © 1990 Brett Williams (18" x 24")

Heaven's Reflection

Heaven's Reflection, © 1996 Brett Williams (30" x 24")

Crafts From The Black Land

Crafts From The Black Land, © 1980 Brett Williams (16" x 20")

The Last Snow Leopard

The Last Snow Leopard, © 2019 Brett Williams (18" x 24")