While looking for some antique items for subject material for paintings, we stopped at a broken down old farm house along the road, we called the junk shop, because there was not much in the way of valuable antiques there.. The sign painted on old old piece of wood said, “Antiques”. The shop was located along a 2-lane road on central Georgia near the town of Pine Mountain.
There was nobody around as we walked around the outside of the building. As we were behind the home, a car drove up, and it was the owner of the property. As usual, the southern folks were as friendly and hospitable. I told him what our intentions were, that we weren’t going to buy anything, just shoot pictures of a few of the items he had laying around. He proceeded to give us a tour of the inside, showing us things that he thought we would be interested in.
After shooting the photos, we said our goodbye’s and we were on our way to the next art show. I painted several paintings from that junk shop. I call my set “Items”, which includes, the “Milk Can”, “The Lantern”, “Wickers End” (which is a broken down cane chair on the back porch) and of course this painting called the “Corner Shelf”. Sometimes I add another painting called “”The Broken Swing”.
Many times I will add something extra in my paintings. “Corner Shelf” is no exception. I put a couple of my artists brushes in the jar near the back of the painting.
While exhibiting in the area of St. Louis, I decided to see what they had in their area that was nostalgic. After some discussion with area locals, found that the oldest Steak and Shake still in existence, was just off of Hwy 55, in St. Louis. Of course I had to check it out, along with some other possible places.
The Steak and Shake picture drew attention wherever I went. I put the cars into the painting to add to the time period of the building. Many people bought prints, because of the building and others for the classic cars.
The year was 2003 and the Number One Art Festival in the Country was the Coconut Grove Arts Festival in Miami, Florida. I had exhibited there once before. When I was accepted for this show, I was asked if I wanted to demonstrate my work at one of the schools in the Miami area.
I thought that would be fun, so I accepted, but was given a time frame to complete a full painting in the classroom. I chose a middle school in southwest Miami and had several phone discussions with the art teacher at the school.
Since I had a number of paintings with a diner theme, I decided to paint a related subject, that took less time to demonstrate. The Mustard and Ketchup painting was the first in a series of diner table-settings paintings. I was impressed by the students interest and the questions they asked during the class.
This was an experience that I will cherish as part of my artistic career.