*Winner of the "Best use of theme" category in the Waterbrook Art Prize, Sydney.
On Christmas Day I found a dead adult rat in my garden but in the midst of the chaos I forgot about it and didn't bury it.
Boxing Day and I found my cat toying with a baby rat that was trying to hide behind a box.
I rescued the baby rat and though he was slightly injured and in shock I decided he was too young to die and telling him to go and take another chance on life, I released him into the garden.
Later that evening, I found that the baby rat had sought out his dead mother and was sitting beside her, just looking and watching with his little paws touching. He didn’t move or run away even when I approached. The scene was so striking that I knew this was what I wanted to paint.
“I LOVE..” It's always about 'us' as humans but in this moment I saw something universal. What do I love? I love that which is irreplaceable. My family and friends and all the people that make life worth living.