From Redneck to Renaissance Man (Lin Berry)

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FineArtViews Daily Newsletter | Friday, August 19, 2011 | Issue 1006
 • From Redneck to Renaissance Man  (Lin Berry)
 • Tell Me a Story: Prominence (Luann Udell), Revisited
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From Redneck to Renaissance Man
by Lin Berry
Dear ,
This post is by guest author, Lin Berry.  This article has been edited and published with the author's permission. You should submit an article and share your views as a guest author by clicking here. We've promoted this post to feature status because it provides great value to the FineArtViews community.  If you want your blog posts listed in the FineArtViews newsletter with the possibility of being republished to our 15,000+ subscribers, consider blogging with FASO Artist Websites.  This author's views are entirely his own and may not always reflect the views of BoldBrush, Inc.
Buddy and I grew up together. The youngest of my mother’s siblings was only 3 years older than me. He was closer to a brother than an uncle and many of the adventures of my youth were either inspired by his “dares” or our mutual desire to push the limits.
Buddy dropped out of school in the eighth grade. He went on to enter the construction trades. When I returned from my military service, Buddy got me a job as an electrician’s helper and like him, I too, eventually became a master electrician.
Still, despite many common interests, we each chose different paths. Buddy was an Elvis, Conway Twitty and country music fan. I liked Jimmy Hendrix, the Who and Crosby, Stills and Nash. Buddy eventually became a prototype Southern redneck. His interests were NASCAR, Bar-B-Q and the aforementioned country music. Art to him was the 1927 “Bucket T”, Model T Ford hot rod that he had lovingly customized.
Life took me in another direction. I quit the electrical business, went to university and took a position as the co-pastor of a church. After graduation, I came to Spain and began to work as a pastor here. Painting had been my hobby since my teenage years and I found many opportunities to develop and improve my art in our new home in Europe. Eventually, I was named Regional Director for Southern Europe for our church. My travels took me to France, Italy and Germany and I added to my English and Spanish, a passible level of French and Italian.
Buddy and I could not have evolved into 2 more different people. It is hard to imagine that as boys we often slept in the same bed and as teenagers drank from the same bottle.
I went through a phase when I painted nothing but abstract impressionist paintings. Some of these are on my website under the collection: “paisaje disonnante” (a dissonant landscape). Still, I wanted to honor my mother and painted for her a portrait of her father titled “Tyrell County Man.” I made a few giclee reproductions of that work to gift to my family. I made one of these for Buddy and for this, we planned to get together for the first time in years.
I have a studio in NC and was working on those abstract paintings at that time. Buddy and his wife came by and as you might expect, they were not too impressed by my abstract work. Then, something very curious happened. As I began to explain to them the principles of abstraction, my use of composition and leaving room for the imagination and mystery, they understood what I was trying to do. More surprising was the fact that they wanted to purchase 2 of the paintings, which I learned they later proudly displayed in their home.
Buddy later contracted cancer and I went to visit him. We had never discussed serious themes in the past. But I soon learned that Buddy, too, had evolved. We talked about the meaning of life, philosophy, history and, of course, spirituality.
Whether it was those abstract paintings or his fight with cancer, I guess I will never know. Something had definitely changed in Buddy, though. His world had expanded and somehow with it, our friendship. When he walked through the darkest valleys of his life, art opened a door for me to help him work through it. Buddy died in 2009. He was 61.
Art can open doors or shut them. Artists often come across as a kind of superior, elite group. On the other hand, there are also people who approach art with closed minds and big mouths. But where there is willingness to dialogue and learn from each other, rich relationships can be developed and miracles often take place.
“Love covers a multitude of sins.”
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Editor's Note:  You can view Lin's original post here.
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Editor's Note:

Every artist has a journey to undertake.  Once you've started on your journey, so many others will find what you do to be inspirational to their own journeys.  Show your art to the world by entering the BoldBrush competition.  You never know…your art might be all someone else needs to become their own hero.


~~~~~~

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This article is reproduced with permission.
Copyright 2011 - Linwood Berry 


 


Learn More about Linwood Berry at: 
http://linwoodberry.com/


 


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This article originally appeared at the following URL:


http://linwoodberry.com/blog/32230/from-redneck-to-renaissance-man
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Tell Me a Story: Prominence (Luann Udell), Revisited
Here are the first five comments regarding yesterday's article:
John Smith
via faso.com
I found what you had to say really interesting - and true. Thank you!
Carol Schmauder
via faso.com
This is a very interesting article, Luann. It makes a lot of sense to use the "hooks" you described. In a previous article it was mentioned that listing those we have take workshops and classes from is probably not necessary and I agree with this for the most part, however, there are times in my community when it pays to mention that I took classes from "so and so" because it carries some weight here. It is probably a good idea to evaluate the circumstances and then mention whatever information makes sense for that situation.
Luann Udell
via faso.com
Carol, you hit the nail on the head. There are few hard rules in this biz, just knowing what approach works best with any given audience.
And glad you liked the article, John! :^)
John Smith
via faso.com
I was interested to read of your fescination with rock art. In my country we have the wonderful Bushman 'San' paintings in many of the caves here -I'm sure you'd love them. Although not as old as the French or Spanish paintings they are pretty old, and still unsettling in their ancient beauty.
Sharon Weaver
via faso.com
Even though you may say you don't like dropping names it is an important way to establish a bond. I recently did a demo and talked about well known artists who I have taken workshops with. It gives me an association with that artist and establishes my credentials too.
Read More Comments or Make Your Own Comment >>
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