Although I was very young when I was born, by the age of five I was very mature for a seven-year-old. That was when a new family moved in next door and AJ became my newest first and only best friend. He has influenced me throughout my life because we are still best friends. His sister was the first girl I ever kissed and we are also still close.
Miss Wilson, my Kindergarten teacher wrote on my very first report card that I should be an artist. Mr. Vahshultz, my mechanical drawing teacher saw something in me and tutored me in advanced perspective drawing.
My dear friend from high school, taunted me to paint watercolors. Otherwise I would have found some other way to de a “delinquent,” a popular term at the time. Later, his step brother twisted me into experimenting with mushrooms.Bless his heart, and I don’t mean that in a bad way, like they sometimes mean in Texas.
to avoid the draft I took some art classes at the local college and stumbled into an instructor who slapped me upside the head and taught me how to see. His name evades me but his insight does not.
Gene Winfield taught me how to chop tops, shave doorhandles, pancake hoods and all that custom car lingo. Gene was the man, part of the 1950’s customizers that launched the movement. There I was at the feet of the custom car lord, and he took a liking to me. All this while finally attending Art Center.
The Art Center College of Design is the center of the universe for an artist. There, two brilliant instructors attempted to pound their brilliance into my brain. There was some success.
That was over thirty years ago. I’ve grown stagnant, a mediocre watercolorist who can’t pay the rent. Then comes a new awakening.
Look for the next post.