I laughed. I can't even draw. I began to joke about it and tell people that I was going to become an artist. A couple of weeks later, my wife bought me some paints, brushes, and a palette for my birthday. It was about a month late. We were too broke when my birthday came around to do anything.
I knew nothing about painting. I had never done it before. I can't even draw. I found a piece of scrap wood in the barn and painted my Uncle Speedy and his one tooth on it. It was to be a gift to my aunt Mary Ann for Christmas. When I got finished I went to sign it. I started to paint my name on it and ran out of room after SamG. I've been SamG ever since. Several years later, the World Famous was added. I was reading about Andy Warhol. Before anyone knew who he was, he would send in people ahead of him to announce he was coming. He wasn't famous at the time, but nobody knew any different. So I figured if I told people I was famous and they believed me, then in their mind, I was famous.
In a previous life, I'd been in the antique business and would still buy and resale out of my house. People would come to the house to buy from me and they started seeing my paintings and wanted to buy them. Everything was $20, no matter what it was. I started numbering my art starting with that first painting I did of my Uncle Speedy. I still have #2 and #3, and was recently able to buy back #7.
About a year later, I got divorced. I'd gotten rehired by the auto parts company and was back to travelling every other week. I left the auto parts company in 2011 after my knee surgery. I began doing my art full time. I tried to make a career out of it, but always keeping the attitude that if it ever became work, I'd quit. As I exposed myself more to the art world and met other artists, I saw a new world with people that I understood. People who were like me. I'd found where I belonged. I gave out a lot of Free Hugs.
I moved a lot. A lot. I wound up in Northeast Georgia in 2013. The worst financial decision I ever made. I'd have left here if I could have afforded to. I still have a love/hate relationship with these mountains. That's another story for another time.
Currently, I'm not doing many shows anymore. Still recuperating from my heart incident back in March. I have been working on SamG Land. That will be an ongoing continuous project. I'm back to making some art (i'm up to #2074). I try to spend 3-4 hours per day in the studio. I've been in a real creative slump the past couple of weeks. I'll get it back soon.
The past 10 years have been up and down. I've had some really good adventures and made some really good friends. I also had a lot of great opportunities that just didn't work out for some reason or another. I'm not going to complain though. It's been a lot of fun. Since my heart incident, my perspective on life has changed a whole lot. My goal now is to live and have fun. While art has always been my "happy fun-time." Nowadays, life is even more focused on having fun.
Thanks everyone for 10 years of support and all the love you've given me.
SamG loves ya back.