Monday, December 31, 2012

2012..... looking back..... looking ahead

I look back at 2012 with a lot of positives and negatives.  The biggest positive is all of the wonderful friends I've made and the opportunity to meet so many people and share my art and give out a couple thousand "Free Hugs!"  One of the goals I hoped to achieve this year was to be an inspiration to other artists.  I think I've laid a good foundation and hope to continue doing that.  I've made people smile, which is why I make art to begin with.  I'm happy also with the development of my art, I've done some different type of work and have been mostly pleased with my output.  The art part of me has gone pretty well. 

Struggles this year have been in my personal life.  Relationship problems, financial difficulties, and depression top the list. I've become way too reclusive.  Some of those will carry over into the new year, but that's just everyday life stuff.  I'm looking at making some changes over the next year.  The old "If it ain't working, change something" quote comes to mind.  I've been reading my Bible lately, asking God for his direction.  Was reading about the part about having a light and hiding it under a bushel.  Kinda spoke to me and told me I need to let my light shine even more. 

So my New Year's Resolution, "Make Changes, Take Chances, Shine Brightly!"

Happy New Year My Friends


Monday, September 3, 2012

Why I continue to make art

I get asked all the time, how I got started making art.  I tell them about the now exwife fussing about me for being laid off and not having a job and taking the online career quiz that said that I should be an artist.  Another question I'm often asked is where do I get my inspiration?  I usually answer that with the statment ideas just pop into my head over morning coffee.  I question that I'm asked on occassion is where do I get my drive?  Why do I continue to make art?  I hope to answer that one here. 
The above painting is one of the pieces in my collection.  It is one of my favorites actually, but by far the most expensive.  I bought it for 50cents at a yard sale.  It is a painting done on cardboard titled "American Air Plane Carrier" signed Auberlene Myhand and dated 1933.  I really like the fact that it displays a part of history, from the time it was actually occuring and the colors have held up very well.  I've been able to find out very little about Auberlene Myhand, in fact, all I was able to find was a photograph of her tombstone.  I used to walk the cemetery with my grandmother.  She was in her 90's when she passed away.  Many of the graves in the old part of the cemetery were unmarked other than a rock with no inscription, or weathered to the extent they were no longer readable.  She knew who was in every one of them though.  I've often thought about that after her passing, nobody may know who these people were anymore. 
As I go through graveyards now, I begin to wonder that if in time all that will be known about the people lying in them will be the year they were born and died.  No mention anywhere of what occurred in between, the life they lived.  I want more than that.  I want to leave something behind that said I was here.  I'd guess you'd call it a legacy.  Just something to say SamG was here. 
Auberlene Myhand may not have left much of a legacy, one painting and a picture of her tombstone is all I've been able to find.  However, what little bit of her I have discovered has inspired me enough that I wanted to tell you about her.  Isn't that what creates a legacy to begin with???  

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The Navy Days

For a brief period back in the late 1990's I was in the US Navy.  I say brief period because I was only in for 4 months.  Some times I think that it may be best for our Country, considering that I was enlisted in the Nuclear Science program.  Most people don't know that I'm a genius.  I always say that I'm a genius that has never learned to apply himself.  Can you imagine me getting to play with stuff that can blow up the planet? 

I started Boot Camp in May 1999 in Orlando, FL.  I didn't care for it too much, but tried to stay low and keep out of trouble.  That's what got me into trouble.  The Company Commander called my name one day to go on a work detail.  There were about 12 of us that were chosen.  We started right after breakfast doing landscape work out in front of the Division building.  It was miserably hot that day.  Orlando in the summer, gets really hot.  We mowed grass with one of hose man-powered lawn mowers, even though there wasn't a blade of grass out there.  I think they wanted the rocks neatly manicured.  We also planted bushes, painted some landscape timbers white, placed them around the bushes we planted and filled it all full of pinestraw.  It did look rather nice.  We reported back to our company just in time for supper.  Upon our arrival, we were asked to turn in our 100 sentences that we were supposed to write.  We advised our Company Commander that we were not aware of such assignment, as we had been on work detail all day.  He then stated, "I don't care where you were, I wanted everybody to write them."  We were dead tired from working in the heat all day, and one of my friends was sun burned so bad that he had 2nd degree burn blisters on his ears.  The Company Commander, CPO Faust, advised us to come see him upon returning from supper. 

So after we got back, we were told to go have a seat in the lounge.  The lounge was a little small room just off the main barracks.  Out of the 70 people in our Company, 12 of us from the work detail and about 6 others, who hadn't completed their assignment, were told to go get in full uniform, including canteens and raincoats.  CPO Faust, who ironically as in  the Legend of Faust who sold his soul to the devil, had to have had some dealings with the devil himself, turned off the air conditioning and laid wet towels under the door.  Then he proceeded to snap his fingers in tempo for 4 1/2 hours.  While he was snapping his fingers, he was steadily barking orders, Push up position, Run in Place, 12 Count Bodybuilders, etc.... Sweat was a half inch deep in the floor making the tile impossible to stand on before the end.  People were falling every couple of minutes.  With about 30 minutes left, I lost my footing and went crashing.  My knee was killing me, but I continued to the best of my ability.  Which with a Company Commander screaming in your ear, was still close to 100%. 

Finally, it was over and we were told to go shower.  My knee had swollen up huge.  After my shower, I went to talk to CPO Faust and show him my knee.  He asked me if I thought it needed to be seen by a doctor, and I told him yes.  I was then given a map to the Naval Hospital.  I'd never been off base before and it was about 11:30 at night.  What CPO Faust did not tell me was that it was about 6 miles to the Naval Hospital.  Remember now, I'd been up since 4:30 am, worked on work detail, trimming rocks and planting bushes all day, and just done 4 1/2 hours of calisthenics, and I had a hurt knee.  By mile 4, I was steadily cursing CPO Faust.  I got to the hospital, saw the Doctor for 5 mins who told me to come back and see him on Monday, and walked back.  Still cursing.  Arrive back in the barracks at 4:30am, laid down, took a deep breath and closed by eyes just long enough for someone to kick the door in and throw a metal trash can across the room.  You guessed it CPO Faust.  Later on in the morning, just after I'd finished my swim test, which consisted of jumping off the diving board and swimming a mile,  he asked me how the doctor visit went, and wanted to know why I didn't take the bus.  I kept wondering why the bus was going by me on my midnight walk every 5 minutes.  Damn You CPO Faust... So anyways, Doctor said I had a bad knee and got me medically discharged.  While I was waiting for all that to happen, they put to work painting inside the Naval Hospital.  Yep, I took the bus.