The World Book
When I was a boy, these books were my window on the world. I could learn about airplanes and elephants. I could read about war heroes like Colonel Mosby and Colonel Patton. Some 70 years later, I am well aware that some of the "facts" shared were not quite accurate. Oh, but the art was very accurate. There were pictures of famous paintings (sadly, many were black and white. Little did I realize that black and white offered me early lessons in value.).
And I painted. First with my personal mixture of poke berries and water. Later, I added tea and coffee to the mix. Then, I had that magical evening meeting Vincent VanGogh (ok, Kirk Douglas, but I was convinced at the time it was Vincent himself giving me a pochade box and tubes of paint.).
Since that beginning, I have painted at a prodigious rate. Thousands of paintings have been completed. It may sound like a great deal, but I have been after it for pretty much 70 years. My formal instruction came in Northwood High School. A dear saint of a woman, Ms. Davila, took me under her wing for three years and coaxed me along. Lessons like "paint what is not there first, then your subject will have a home.", "color matters, value matters more", "beautiful color is nice, but without composition, you have nothing more than lipstick on a pig", and the long lasting, "a blank canvas is not a block, it is an open invitation to communicate." She was very big on art is communication just as much as poetry and song.
So, there you have the roots. The travels extend from NYC to New Orleans to Paris to Provence to Rome to Venice and back again. The world is so damn beautiful and I try to capture moments and beauty on my canvas. I try. I have been fortunate enough to sell my artwork and I have stumbled into opportunities that I probably didn't deserve (but I will take them).
But, the goal is to get the art in front of as many people as possible. When my art hangs in your home or office, we have an intimate connection. My subject matter in that piece interested you. My competition of the piece pleased you. My communication of that moment in time touched you and you bought it. Mission accomplished one painting at a time.
As I have matured and reached the "twilight time", I have begun interacting with art groups in the area. Art clubs and associations have two functions. One, they offer a place for like minded people to gather and paint together. Two, they offer different venues for members to hang their work. Paintings are either juried into a show or it is a member only event that features one piece from any member that chooses to take part. Plein air groups are the gypsies that travel all across the universe to participate in events. Their events usually have a public free for all at the end in which anyone can take to the streets and paint (quick draws). Events are juried.
So the quandary is how to get art in front of more people. I have not been juried into any plein air events (talent lacking???). I have been juried into various association shows (participants lacking???). I have taken part in many events. It just doesn't feel like I am reaching the right folks. Pop up markets are cash and carry. I sold almost $1,000 worth of paintings at a Dupont Circle event, but attendance was disappointing.
I am willing to accept, the internet universe is probably to best place to share. It offers an open end to anyone with a keyboard. I realize you become just another person posting images and no image is a beautiful and the original but it is what it is.
So, I will back off the show circuit. They entail a tedious specific drop off time and pick up time. Most attendees are other artists in the show and their family and/or friends. I have come to realize, my art is mine. It is unique. I offers a glimpse of the beauty I see.
So, if you like it and want it, feel free. I also have expanded my repertoire to include prints of various sizes, coffee mugs, towels etc. I will always offer me.
Peace and love