Creators (or “My Name Is Earl For Pictures”)

Last week, I attended a reception for “Creators”, a collection of new black and white portraits by Denver Artist, Sharon Brown. Sharon is an oil painter and her studio is just down the street from mine. Over the course of the last year, we have had several opportunities to collaborate, the last of which was for an exhibition/presentation with a group called Welcome Colorado.

Before the group arrived for that particular event, I was helping to get things in order at The Pattern Shop Studio. We had just finished setting up when she disappeared and quickly returned with a camera in hand. I’m not big on photos, but was flattered, assuming she was capturing the moment on film.

“Why don’t you stand up against that wall,” she directed, moving me near a self-portrait of mine. I straightened my posture and beamed right into the camera. Usually, I detest getting my picture taken, but I was rather excited for the upcoming event and couldn't conceal my ear to ear grin.

“Don’t smile,” she said.

“Excuse me?” I thought I misunderstood what she said.

“Don’t smile. I want a serious shot of you. It’s for a project of mine.”

I was confused. I thought about all the times I didn’t want to smile for a picture and now I was being asked not to and I couldn’t help myself. For the first time, maybe ever, I actually had to suppress happiness for a photograph. Oh, the irony. It took a few takes to get a decent shot with my eyes open (I seem to have the same problem as Earl in My Name Is Earl when it comes to keeping my eyes open for pictures). Thank goodness for digital cameras.

After she took the picture, she explained to me that she had taken my photograph along with a number of other artists in the RiNo area and was working to put together a show of black and white, monochromatic oil paintings of all the creative people she knew. Last Friday was the opening for that show, which, by the way, if you’re in the Denver area for this First Friday (November 6th), will be open for your viewing pleasure; just down the street, in fact, from my studio which will also be open.

The reception for Creators was wonderful- Sharon and her husband are such gracious hosts. There were quite a few people and the paintings were very well done. She thoughtfully arranged each painting to make sure it was paired with another for one reason or another. Together, the body of work made for a warm, intriguing, ethereal atmosphere that really captured a nice depth in the facial features. I would certainly recommend seeing the show. Maybe after that, come down to my studio... just down the block- I’ve got new paintings to show you too.

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