I am preparing for an art fair tomorrow. I need to mat and frame a few more pieces, but right now my feelings and emotions (and spiritual guides) are telling me to take a time out and write about someone who I feel is quite special in my life. A creative being who inspires me to the helm.
This particular artist I am speaking of is Fred Holly. A wonderful acrylic/colored pencil artist who teaches at Vogt Visual Art Gallery at Tinley Park, Illinois, his playful fantasy images are a sight to behold. Several of his images (done in acrylics) are posted here below.
I remember stopping by one time and seeing one of his works in progress, a castle with a hot air balloon rising into the sky. I was awed that he had created his piece totally from his mind and I knew then and there that one does not always need an image to "copy" from. Our heart, mind and soul has a wealth of inner material to draw from. I left the gallery that day swept up with possibilities about an imaginative realm where whimsy and fairy tales come true. Yes, he was someone who helped inspire me to create fantasy images.
Not long after this encounter, Fred suffered a very serious illness, which continues to disable him. Yet, he keeps painting and teaching classes at the Gallery. The only thing he cannot do is frame his own pieces anymore. I saw him at a recent reception for an exhibit of his work and felt his inner glow. In some ways, he seemed healthy and at peace (at least, his soul did). His mind was sharp and his wit still evident. Yet, on a physical realm, Parkinson's had recently invaded his life as a "side effect" of his initial illness and the shaking was there as he sat on his chair. I took his hand and his sweet smile radiated across his face. Yes, here was the Fred I knew. The spirit within still shone through.
I thought to myself about his passion and continued determination to spread his gifts to the world. What else can he do but live his life with his creatuve soul? For me, it is a lesson, to keep creating no matter what. and to live fully in the moment. I feel that everything in life teaches us something. If the resistance comes, which I personally encounter, remember those who have faced even greater obstacles and continue to share their creations in spite of, or as a result of. It can put everything into perspective.
Fred, thank you for coming into my life. You are a wonderful role model for me and I am glad to know you. I offer this virtual rose from me to you. May we each as artists continue to pass on the creative torch.....
"Stop and Smell The Flowers"
P.S. His work is on display the month of September at Vogt Visual Art Gallery in Tinley Park. Please stop by and see his magical works. Oh, and come on over to the art fair on Sunday too which is just down the road from the gallery. Here's the link for more info: Tinley Park Art Fair. I'll be there sharing my gifts too. What a great artist's day, don't you think? And now, off for a few last minute preparations......