Many of you know about some of the most private details of my life at this point..
Some of you would even say I’ve over shared…
I guess that’s the beauty of what happens here we all have a choice. To come together under a common bond and share the joys and
sorrows of each others lives. Some to comment, some to watch from the shadows and judge. Either way I made a decision when I first started
blog to be open. Many people forget that this site didn’t start as an Art blog but as my personal journal cataloging my life and struggles with coming to
terms with Young Onset Parkinson’s disease. This journey has taken me around the united states and abroad I’m happy to say I’ve shared every step along the ways, the good the bad and the very ugly personal truths of my life that in reality many of us share in common but would never put out there the way I do.
I’ve said it before and Ill stand by it. I’m a man, no different than any other with the slight exception that I paint and write my heart and soul for all to see. I end 99% of my posts with a kind word. And I pose some hard questions and thoughts because I believe that one man and one voice can change the world.
Art and words have lost their meaning and I will not stand for it another second. For if YOU will not Be Brave and Be Bold or Thrive in the life you have….. I will. If given the chance I would take your hand and shout your name from the roof tops to show the world your brilliance and compassion. Live your words or don’t use them at all. At this point I’ve lost all of it. My job, my career my home and my family and Ill be dammed if I’m going to silence my heart and soul now.
I just received word that I’ve been accepted into a local art co-op. 4 floors of prime down town retail, commercial and loft living space. A place that is positioning its self at the edge of creating an new feel a new scene thriving and ready to make Art believable again. Any person can put brush to canvas, lead to paper and glue a stone to a ring. But only a few can create through there passion to express that love, fear and strength through their art. So again I say…to you.
Be Brave, Be Bold and Thrive in the life you have… No… life is not easy for any of us. But if I can live through the things I’ve seen, done and had happen to me then you can too. I believe in you. I’ve seen your strength, beauty and passion.
That’s all I’ve to say. Namaste Benjamin 1970-current “A life in progress”
Paths change.. life’s web ebbs and flows in ways often unpredictable I think at time the best we can hope for is just to hold on for dear life and hope we come out on the other side intact or at least in some resemblance of what we thought we were before the maelstrom engulfs us fully.
Often with no recourse do we survive these things that life puts in front of us. I sit here today a man in limbo yet again. First Parkinson’s takes the life I knew away and forces me to reexamine my life. Now I prepare to set forth on what may prove to be the most intense soul searching deep and painful journey of my life. Being asked to leave my entire life as I now know it. I’m fearful because of my Parkinson’s and lack of real humans in my life. I’m fearful that my sons life will change in a way that will hurt him beyond what I can help him heal.
Today I sit hear In fear of the paint as I’m unsure if I’m ready to look those demons in the eye. Oddly though there is a calm inside me that can see a better tomorrow the part I fear is the fact that despite seeing a better tomorrow I can’t see the path to which to follow. So again I leap with blind faith that those who truly love me and that the universe will catch me as I shed this next layer. And try to become the man I was born to be.
I know of no other way to escape the pain, fear and heartache I’m feeling right now. So I apologize for filling your readers with such sorrow. I know my pain is no more great or less than any of yours and many of you have been through such things as well.
Thank you for your friendship, kindness and understanding as I work through these highly complex set of emotions.
The Story behind the Art and Artist of Tempest:
Id like to say my life was a fairy tale full of dreams fulfilled, wishes granted
and time well spent. To do so would be far from the truth and a rather boring story.
In Tempest we see the turbulent clouds of dark purple and green both colors hopeful yet full
of a troubled heart and life. Struggling to find my way on this new path that life has chosen for me.
The form of the figure one could say is female in its curves full of soft sweeping motion and a resemblance
of a musical clef. I her shoulder and breast is a figurative form of infinity giving reference to a belief that I have
that all things are one both past and present. Also in reference to our human cycle of life destined to
repeat our pasts until the puzzle is solved.
She holds her head high above the sky yet in a position of sadness as so often I do. Sad for the hurt in this world,
sad for the hurt in my soul. The window shines a soft yet illuminating light and for me is also the window to my heart
and soul. of two minds hoping to give light to those I encounter in this lifetime and the light that shines out of the darkness
that I so often find myself in. One could ask how someone so tormented could always wishes everyone well, joy, love and happiness.
Its simple I don’t ever want anyone to live through see or feel things that I’ve experienced in my life.
The window, of hope in the darkness.
The spheres find their way to the Tempests side as she stands strong in the calm of the dark purple calm.
Circles, we could write a book on the metaphorical meaning of the circle. Matter of fact there is probably
a guy sipping scotch on a beach somewhere who has. For me in this piece the are eternal, life, death alpha and omega.
From one we have the tree of life emerging from the darkness of the shadow. An ever-present reminder that even in
the darkest of times life will find a way to carry on. From the other sphere we have a cord somewhat of an umbilical
to the tempest also representing the twists and turn of this elegant dance of existence we call life.
Please take from this piece what you will it has and never will be my intent to force my will upon the viewer.
Life is hard, mine, yours, his and hers but life is also beautiful full of hidden graces.
The spring breeze scented with flowers that come but once a year.
Summer sunsets so magical people make a living chasing them down to simply capture the moment.
A child’s first breath and the unconditional love of an old friend.
First kisses and last dances these are the things that make weathering the storm worth living.
So it is with these words from my heart to yours I give you and world. The Tempest.
Tempest ~ My Girl Collection
41.5″ x 48.5′
Inks and Acrylics
Close up 1.
Close up 2.
Close up 3.
Where we started.. As always Be Brave, Be Bold and Thrive in the life you have.
A life in Progress
**Ink sketch done by Picasso
There are days when the pain and fatigue are more than I can find words for. Sadly often those days are when people need me to be socially ” better” and not a guy shuffling around with Parkinson’s and stage 7-8 pain. See that’s the silly thing about neurological disorders is they change the singles and the way the brain sends or does send signals out. Today my hip sockets deep deep down inside where my spine joins the pelvis is basically on fire. Literally like waves of electric fire is washing over the bones. No amount of Percocet ever really tames the pain. It robs me of my leg strength and makes sitting impossible and standing almost unbearable.
Today reminds of this painting
The Many faces of Me
As my days can change at a without notice. Then again I think that’s true for all of us.
This post has lapsed into the next morning it now being 2/17/14 4:30am pst
I just to my morning pill and am doing the grandpa shuffle around the house, a fairly common thing for me so no big deal though my tremor is stronger than normal this morning so typing on my phone is a bit of a challenge. I like to think of it as trying to walk across one of those bouncy castles you have to catch the rhythm just right and move in short burst. Well being this early in the day it’s time to do two things drink coffee and get painting.
I’m so close to finishing at least the first layer of hand detailing on the red coral piece. I can see the finish line yay, then some planned changes to the back ground and viola we may just have one more piece to add to the 2014 collection. Anyhow I believe it’s Monday today so happy Monday it’s Presidents’ Day hear in the states which means the kiddos are home from school and I virtually have the house to myself since the girls will be out I town most of the week. Hmmmm what kin of trouble can I get into ;) lots I’m sure but I won’t. I’m a good good boy.
I hope wherever you are that you have a great day and that the world is kind and generous to you. Should you ever need a kind word or reminder if how absolutely brilliant you are please look my way I’m always here for.
Much love and light
Good morning, I can’t even begin to tell you how absolutely wonderful it is to see you here today. Or for that matter how lovely it is for me to be here this morning. As you may or may not know since my move out to the country I have gained a private studio space, heated with separate entrance real windows and an office. (which still isn’t set up) One of the things that I didn’t take into consideration when I moved was the fact that I was no longer living with some of the amenities of the city such as a the bus, or having my son and daughter even remotely close to the schools that they attend. Oops, poor planning on my part. So there are days when I literally have mere moments to myself before I have to attend to the needs of others.
Such is life. That being said it does give even greater pleasure to the time I do get to spend in the studio. Below you will find a number of pieces **All of which are works in progress, please join me as we take a short walk through my most recent adventures.
This piece is very close to being finish, its comprised of gold flake enamel and various cadmium of yellow, orange and white.
“The Last Dance” 9″ x 12″ mixed media 2014
This piece has yet to receive it final definitive depth coat a signature final varnish or truly be finished but I’ve had this image and feeling in my head and heart for weeks. If you will let me take you to your (our) past. That feeling of the last dance of the night, or a long good-bye from a date that started and ended innocently 24 hours after it started. I know I’m not verbally expressing myself well but that joy and longing, sense of completion yet a yearning for it to go on forever even though you know its time to go…. That is what I’m trying to express in this piece and will once completed. Hopefully to be completed after my morning tasks today.
This lovely miss is just a charcoal drawing that took about 1 minute to do ( 12′x 24″)honestly I am just looking at placement of the figures getting an idea of location, form and feeling. I’m going to be combing (hopefully) a number of styles into this piece. The Goodnight moon, idea with my classic figure style as well as a little surrealism done in the same fashion as Green Girl. We shall just have to wait and see how it all goes could work, could not.
by now everyone should be able to recognize this collection with their eyes closed , yes its a Coral piece one of two and it is very, very early in its development. As a matter of fact it only has one color so now its just a giant orange blob but I guarantee that will change shortly. If you haven’t had a chance to stop by and see the Love piece in its new frame then please do so, I think it turned out rather well. As always, Be Brave Be Bold and Thrive in the life you have. Should you ever need reminding of how truly gifted, special, unique and important you are to the world please come see me and we’ll talk. For it’s always harder to see the light you create for others when your standing in the middle of it.
Given the lack of stars above..
The fog has stayed for days..
Such darkness cold and loneliness
Lives only in the hearts of men and monsters .
As I search the electric light of the universe for strength
signs of love, peace and tranquility.
A body full of pain and fear
as one paints a pretty face to keep the demons at bay .
Tired of playing games tired of life’s trials they say “what does not kill us makes us stronger”.
My question is then a Sir/Madame
How strong does one need to be? And why ?
Why not kill me where I stand as you’ve done my father and fathers father.
Why slowly crush my life from the inside out?
Such pondering wandering a on this starless morning.
No moon to flirt with no wanten kisses.
To lose thoughts upon…
Just paint and pills, dots and dashes.
People have often asked where the inspiration for blue moon came from. Here’s a hyper close view of the painting I drew inspiration from. If you can pull in close to my piece and you’ll see what I mean
Over the years I’ve drawn inspiration from so many sources, people,artist, music,lovers,silence and of coarse emotions and nature.
It’s hard to say who or what has influenced me more
Juan Miro or Picasso.? Certainly Dali and Ernst surrealism have inspired my style
Picasso esc themes can be seen through out many of my pieces, even hints of DeKooning and Jasper Johns, Pollock and Franz Kline
Then one day I think I came into my own:
It’s been an honor and privilege over the past year plus to be able to share my heart and soul with so many of you. Thank you for being on this journey with me, I couldn’t do it without you.
Life is a funny thing sometimes, full of firsts and last. Today for me is hopefully a day filled with firsts. This morning I shall take “Hearts on Fire“ the first piece to be created in the new studio to be shipped to its new home.
I also will have a first medically. I have my first appointment with my new neurologist today.
Actually she is a “Movement specialist” which basically means she specializes in PWP. I guess because we move funny ;) Sadly I’ll be attending this rather major event solo as M has a surgery to attend to with her Mom. But on a very exciting and highly positive side. The main garage at the back of the house has now been hyper organized and is ready for use…Yes.. The car is happy once again, it gets to sleep inside. YAY!! You forget such luxuries when you always park your car in the garage. Like waking up and climbing into a nice warm car. Or not having to defrost ice and frost off the vehicle before you can go anywhere. Tis often these small luxuries that I forget about until they are gone. Make no mistake it is a luxury having a car let alone a place to put it in. I’m very thankful simply to have a house to put myself and children.
Okay well back on track then, I must say I’m very excited about a few things coming up in life. I just purchased some new wood panels from my wood guys. The reason I love these guys is simple. Most of the time when you walk into a “mans” store ( which is a joke btw) so please don’t take offence, if your not dressed in coveralls’ and layered in a fine powder of construction dust the service it crap and when you finally get some you either get treated like a newbie or simply an idiot. These guys that I buy from are not that way at all which I completely appreciate. I buy the panels in these huge sheets then the guys with their giant wall saw cut it down into manageable pieces for me, they’ve even loaded into my car on days when I feel exceptionally horrid. Wow! I’m wandering tons today… to get back on track I have a ton of new panels cut, some BIG pieces some normal 24×36′s and then my 24×24′s. Point being I’m happy. I have a new home that wont try to throw me down the stairs. I have a new studio in which I can both paint and have friends and clients over to and thanks to M and the kids with the back garage cleaned out I can set up my “shop” area so I can cut my own panels because I still have all of that beautiful vintage paneling I was given a while back.
Something I wanted to mention because it came up in conversation the other day, did you know I take trade as payment for paintings. So if you’ve ever had your heart set on a piece or a print but find that what ever price is listed is not doable please don’t hesitate to ask. I’m far far from being a rich man, I mean think about it. I live on a SSDI check that comes from the government, the things I need in my life are very few and very simple. And yes when you push the “donate” button on this site the funds really do towards pills and paint. I wont even go into the cost of being sick in America. Matter of fact I think a number of people have made documentaries on it already.
Well I’ll be a bit of a ghost around WP today as I’ll be heading out of town to go see my new doctor 3pm pst, if you want to chat you can find me fluttering about on Twitter and Facebook. I may end up staying overnight in Portland tonight depending on how I feel after the appointment. Often these things take a great toll on me physically and mentally so we’ll see how it all goes. Thanks for letting my monkey mind chatter away and sorry to be so wanderrie this morning. As always Be Brave, Be Bold and Thrive in the Life you have.
ps. I need a new laptop ;) mine died.
Such a gentle journey in the heart of kindness
flows all possibilities to the end of a long road less traveled.
Does your heart ache at the changing times
or do things of the coming past give you strength
to live a brighter day today and shine on for all to see.
I give you my heart in place of yours
Fear not these death lights dear one for they come in peace
to take your resting bones to place of holy.
Rest in the hearts of all who have loved you and always will.
Cry not for the passing and fill that space the pictures and
Dreams of the times gone by so that you may give that light
to all that continue on this earth.
Please take my strengths when you need it most
for I will borrow more the sun.
Please have my hand when the standing on ones legs become more to bear
than it ever has ever been.
Know that I am and will forever be for I always have and will always be
How does one “fight the good fight”? How do the weak become strong or the timid become brave? Because of people like you. And how does one truly give thanks to gifts they receive in life? There are so many ways that one can give thanks.
So it can be said especially during this holiday season I’m thankful for you. I appreciate you. You’re words give me strength, inspiration, hope, courage and passion. So thank you. I know so many of you ( us ) enter this holiday season with the burdens of the year behind us but still full on your backs and minds, you may wonder how,? How can I ( us, we, you and I ) go on? I’ve felt the same many many many times. When I was first diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease I had really no idea what to expect. Then slow, steadily and with out fail I watched as if from the outside my life fall away and I had very little if any control. Slowly I lost my ability to communicate well enough to run large companies the only thing I’d done since I was 18 years old. I watched as my body, a once well trained fighting machine became weak and unbalanced. I watched as my once steady hands began to tremble like a cold baby bird. I was scared, still am, but then something happened…..I found you, all of you and you found me.
So today I give thanks, thanks for my life that I have, for the friends and family that I’ve made with many of you. For it is the strength, hope, courage of many that build a world so strong with a voice so loud that nothing is impossible. It is because of you that the world is a better place. No matter how far beneath the struggle of life you may feel from time to time know one thing. You are strong, you are brave and you are beautiful and intelligent, worthy of all the good thing life has to offer. I believe in you, I appreciate you and I am thankful for you.
Happy Holidays everyone. Without you I never would have had the strength to become the man I am today.