When I first saw this image, what struck me was the notion of the 'big sky'. Despite the fairly simple style in which the ground surface and the trees are painted, the night sky is this swirling, detailed expanse of blue tones and stars all the way to the low horizon of the image. The overall mood of the sky, the sense of coldness and wilderness, with the artistic licence to depict night sky in dizzying swirls, reminds me of a scene from a Tim Burton film- think 'The Nightmare Before Christmas' or 'Edward Scissorhand'.
Yet despite the sense of expanse, coldness and isolation to this picture, the child-like simplicity to it makes me feel in peace to admire the view, rather than lost and alone by the scenario this image puts me into. I don't feel like Leonardo Di Caprio, frostbitten and crawling along struggling for survival in 'The Revenant'. I feel like Winnie the Pooh, standing in the snow, contemplating the sky and making poignant, child-like observations about the stars and the way they come out every night in the same place. All is good with the world and there's no need to feel threatened so instead I can take in the surroundings and appreciate the beauty of the night sky at Earth's end.
The idea of being out in the snow-covered wilderness at night would usually make me imagine an uncomfortable situation where I'd be subject to all kinds of threats- hypothermia, animal attack, starvation, disease etc. Yet the surreal, simplistic manner in which the artist has treated this scenario has instead drawn me in. It's a reminder that what makes the difference is often not the subject matter but the way it is handled, and that beauty can be found in fairly simple things.