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A painter of figures, portraits, street scenes, and industrial landscapes, Rick Garland began his career as an illustrator but found he wanted more freedom to express his own emotions and ideas in his work. While his detailed depictions possess an impressive fidelity to reality, he is more concerned with capturing the emotive qualities of light and atmosphere than adhering to photorealism. In his large-scale works of abandoned factories, the presence of light becomes symbolic. In Past Reflections, the illumination of the plate-glass windows alongside the empty gray space functions as a nostalgic comment on the decline of the industrial workplace, while in The Light Beyond, the ethereal glow that beckons from outside the barren factory suggests a change of fate—a future filled with promise.