Since returning to my new home of St. Augustine two weeks ago, life has been moving swiftly. After battling some anxiety immediately following my drive back across the state (more than likely a delayed reaction to subconscious anxiety I struggled with while back home), I decided that taking a breather and resetting my brain was a must if I wanted to be able to carry forward with a clear mind and body at ease. And so, I’ve been making an effort to slow down my output and streamline my focus.
For me, slowing down has meant catching up on my work, taking a timeout on taking on anything new, and making a list of things that can wait (and letting them be). Most importantly, it’s meant shifting my creative and productive energies toward assisting Andrew in preparing for an art show.
Back in the spring, Andrew was given the opportunity to scale back his full-time work as a middle school art teacher to part-time. Teaching every other day has provided him with the renewed energy needed to pour his heart into the art he loves to create.
As a part of St. Augustine’s monthly art walk, Andrew’s paintings are on display for show and sell tonight in Nettles Fine Jewelry. In just a couple of hours I will be in a room filled with friends, acquaintances, family and strangers, sipping mulled wine and standing in awe of the artistic talent that brought these pieces to life.
Like everything else in life, the days leading up to the show have been lessons in balance for both of us. As for me, by better prioritizing my own work and ideas and deciding what can wait and what can’t, I’ve been more productive with my time, including my time spent helping Andrew. Thankfully nothing on my plate these past couple of weeks has been unmanageable or all that urgent, so I’ve been able to be Andrew’s right-hand dear.
On the running front, since I do have the St. Augustine Half Marathon approaching next weekend that I haven’t forgotten about, I’ve been forced to be a bit more creative with my training. This has meant me running 3 – 4 miles over to Andrew’s house and then immediately jumping in the studio to sand frames. It’s meant leaving him for a couple hours to go on a longer run and returning to pick up where I left off, with smoothies and dinner in hand. It’s meant taking his dog Escher on a trail run with me in an effort to wear him out since he has had to stay inside during the hours we’ve been doing woodwork in Andrew’s backyard.
In a fast and furious nutshell, the last couple of weeks of show prep have been a rewarding and worthwhile kind of bananas busy, and have looked something like this: long days and late nights in the studio stretching canvas, stapling canvas, building frames, sanding frames, photographing paintings, transporting larger than life paintings, getting prints of paintings made, preparing paintings to be installed in their place for the show, hanging paintings in their place, touching up bits and pieces, street teaming with flyers, and getting all the information for his website in place. It’s been a sprint to the finish, but we made it. Or at least we’ve almost made it.
Here are a few visual snippets from our show preparation.
SHOW PREP SNIPPETS
Afternoon post-run framing.
Frames lined up and ready for canvas.
Finished “Fall Feelings” painting with custom cedar trim.
Escher on the trail.
As someone who is usually on the outside looking in, promoting art events as a member of the media, let me just say, being on the other side of the equation is an entirely new and different animal. It’s invigorating to have my hands in bringing something like this to life, as part of a challenging, creative, awe-inspiring team. By challenging, I mean in the ways that make me constantly want to be the best version of myself possible, despite my shortcomings. Because Andrew and I have both grown accustomed to being lone wolves over the past few years and are two people who are hellbent on always making sure we are entirely self sufficient, I think opening ourselves up and allowing someone else to move in and offer a helping hand, remains a strangely uncomfortable yet warm and welcome support for the both of us. It’s been long in my heart to walk hand in hand with someone who is passionate and driven to create meaningful work that tells thoughtful stories. That’s exactly who Andrew is and what Andrew does through his paintings. I couldn’t be more thankful we’ve had the opportunity to prepare for this show together.
ALL THINGS DEAR
In the words of my dear Andrew Scott Wilson, his collection of work titled “Dear and Light Blue” can be summarized as follows:
I am reducing a life down to my personal icons. Portrayed via the moments I have shared with them. They are dear to me. These are the faces and the moments that have weight. Light blue is rooted in sadness, but in ways, it is a light brighter than white. A sign of life. A balance of inward and outward emotion. When I remember those who are dear, I remember them with a focus. An emphasis that dominates middle, fore, and background. They become what they are…everything.
Throughout the build up to tonight, I’ve grown very much attached to a different one of his paintings every single day it seems. Here’s a quick look at one I’ve been extremely connected to since the beginning. “Chin Up” is one of the first pieces Andrew painted of yours truly. This painting is 24″ x 54,” oil on canvas.
To see the insane amount of detail and brush strokes that go into each piece of the painting, here’s a detailed shot of “Chin Up.”
Here’s a playful product meets painting photo shared on Nettles Facebook Page as a teaser for tonight’s show.
As I eluded to earlier, another facet of preparing for this show has been getting his website up and running. Andrew’s website was designed by our dear friends over at Spacecamp Co., who are an integral part of the team bringing tonight’s show to life.
CHECK IT OUT…
If you are interested in the work Andrew creates, I eagerly invite you to check out—andrewscottwilson.com.
The first dozen or so paintings featured on his “work” page include the pieces currently on display at Nettles Fine Jewelry for show and sale. If you are interested in having Andrew’s artwork on your wall, be on the lookout for his online shop, coming soon! Plus, you can contact him via the form on his “commissions” page.
And now, it’s go time, show time! Time for me to step back, relax, and watch my dear shine tonight.