As the show opened, the Festival’s featured artist Don Rambadt stopped by my display to chat. Don’s knowledge of art and the skill with which he plies his trade are truly remarkable. I respect his opinion and when he had such nice things to say about my work, he nearly left me speechless.
The two days following the Festival were spent with sculptor Paul Rhymer. It was the first occasion where I’ve spent much time with Paul and it turned out to be one of those experiences that changed the way I look at the world. When Paul originally invited me to spend a couple of days with him, our plan was to simply do some duck hunting. It sounded like fun and, truth be told, I really wanted to take the opportunity to pick Paul’s brain about his art. As it turned out, the duck hunting was less than stellar, but still a lot of fun… and Paul is like a brother I never knew. We spent a considerable amount of time driving from one place to the next and it gave us a chance to talk about a lot of things… from art and business to life in general. We discussed the Birds In Art exhibit we had both attended in September and Paul quizzed me about the plein air painting workshop held after the opening weekend. I told him how much I learned in those four days, but the best part of the entire experience was the privilege of spending time with James Coe and Larry Barth each evening.
The second morning of our hunt, celebrated sculptor Walter Matia joined us in the marsh looking for wood ducks. We never fired a shot, but after breakfast Walter invited us to drop by his studio that afternoon. So we did. What a treat! I’ve admired Walter and his work for years and it was an extraordinary experience to peruse his studio and talk with him about art. I tried my best to keep my mouth shut and just listen to every word.
By the end of that day, I’d watched Paul pour several bronze castings and spent several hours helping with a huge monument sculpture of a big horn sheep that will be unveiled in
Tall grass indeed my friend. Tall grass indeed J