This may be jumping the gun a little, but suddenly after 49 years, I get a friend request on one of the social media sites.  I immediately recognized the name of one of my best friends from high school!  Of course, I agreed to accept the request and she then told me that they are getting the 50th high school reunion plans started for next year.  We got into a nice conversation about where I now lived and what I was doing with my life while commenting that several had mentioned my artwork in our high school yearbook.  Do they even print those anymore?

     I told her that I was now a professional artist and she got excited.  Turns out the class is sponsoring a silent auction during the reunion to support scholarship funds for the school. She then asked if I would be willing to donate a small painting to the auction. Kentucky is a different art world from Florida in that I paint mostly Fl scenes!  But I told her I did have one that would work.  It is my painting of the Connemara horses called "HOME TO THE HIGHLANDS".  I am to take the painting with me when we go up next year and hand deliver it for the sale.  I certainly look forward to catching up with old friends and benefiting my alma mater at the same time.

      I graduated from Bourbon County High School in Paris, Ky. The old post office there is now a museum of art and history, called the Hopewell Museum.  I did some research on it and it is very involved in the community in that they have multiple programs for the public  that teach art, the history of Bourbon County and the region, as well as a community room that is well used.  My friend told me they feature local artists as well as those who are from the area. She then asked me if I would consider showing my art there at some point.  I would have to think about that as it is quite a distance to travel for a show,  but we'll see.

     I well remember my four years of high school art class.  The teacher, Mrs. Barkley, was strict but very dedicated to her craft.  She was a skilled artist and if you were serious about learning she was serious about teaching you well!  I loved it all and yes I learned a lot!  I was very proud to have been asked to do some artwork for our yearbook.  As it turned out they kept asking for more so that I finally had three drawings published in that one book and I still have my copy.  My children and grandchildren love to go through it and laugh, not at my artwork, but at the "funny" hairstyles and dress of the students.  Those were the days for sure!  What I think is funny is that those hairstyles and the clothing styles are back again, now!

     Another thing I remember is one year ahead of me was another serious art student named Frosty Rankin.  He was very talented and painted a huge seascape that hung in the school office.  I would often go in and look at that painting and it encouraged me to try ever harder to become as good an artist as he was.  He eventually went to the Ringling School of Art here in Florida, and went on to  become a professional artist.  My friend and I discussed him during our call and turns out Frosty is now back in Kentucky and focuses on painting the many beautiful and interesting old barns all around the state.  They are very popular indeed!  I look forward to seeing him again, plus I'd be interested in knowing how many professional artists came from that school's art program.

     I have photos of some of the artwork I did for our yearbook below as well as one of the painting I plan on donating to the auction, that is unless I decide to paint another one that will fit the area better.
Time will tell on that decision.  For now, enjoy, and thanks for looking!

24 X 36
Acrylic on stretched canvas


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