Art Quench Invites Artist “SHARZAY” To Share His Story
Sharzay has used his creative mind and artistic talent to recreate his memories and take us on his very own life’s journey.
“HOW IT ALL BEGAN FOR ME”
Hello! My name is “Sharzay”. I have been asked by the publisher of this on-line magazine to write an ongoing series about my art. I accepted the challenge and this is my first article. My story begins back in 1960 when I was just 2 years old.
In an effort to keep me occupied my mother had bought me some construction paper and crayons. Apparently I picked the paper that was closest to being white out of the bunch. I then grabbed a few crayons and slowly started to draw (what I consider to be) circles (at that time).
After I completed the piece my mother asked me what I wanted to call it and she tells me that I said “Doorknobs”. Because of her remembering this story and saving this actual piece in a photo album someplace I have an accurate historical record of the first evidence I ever displayed of my artistic tendencies and abilities and I can say “without a doubt” that the first piece of art I ever created was named “Doorknobs”.
I remember seeing the piece in the photo album many times, I just haven’t been able to find that photo album in my mother’s storage shed but I’m still looking.
Because I don’t have the actual piece I decided to recreate it to the best of my recollection for my reading audience. This is how I remember it.
This piece was clear proof that at the early age of “2” I had demonstrated my love of “art” in general and more specifically my love for “pop art”. Funny that this would happen in 1960. While I was drawing “Doorknobs” the pop art explosion was just taking off with people like Andy Warhol and others.
Recently I turned 55 and decided to write a book on my childhood about some of the things I remember growing in the Bronx in a place called “Clason Point”.
I had no photos of the places I was referring to in the book so I created images of them as I remembered them to be in my mind. Some of those photos are relevant to this article because when I talk about…
“how it all began for me” it was this place: Clason Point and the things I experienced there that would help shape me into the person (and into the artist) I would later become.
I grew up on a street called Pugsley Avenue. As a child my family made sure I always had construction paper, glue, a pair of plastic scissors and crayons available to me at all times so that if I wanted to create something I could. This definitely helped to allow me creative side to come out.
We had a grocery on the corner of our street named “Tony’s” and along with food he sold a few other things two of which were construction paper and crayons. My friends who read the book I wrote tell me that the photo I created of Tony’s was exact down to very last detail.
When my mom needed some things that Tony’s did not have I got to accompany her on an adventure to another store that was about 7 blocks away called “Pioneer”. This was that store as I remember it.
After we got done in Pioneer we’d walk about 2 or 3 blocks to the butcher. I loved this part of the journey because right next door to the butcher was a candy store called “Nellie’s”. There my mom would allow me to have a chocolate egg-cream. I can taste it now. The seltzer was so fresh and bubbly and the chocolate syrup was delicious. As soon as the lady behind the counter would hand it to me I would start sucking it down with those big bubbles from the foam going up my nose. Here is that building.
It’s a long time since I stood in that store as a boy sipping on an egg-cream but I can tell you that after painting, sketching or creating for some 40 years of my life now I realized that many of the paintings artists create are of things they see around them.
For example, even old masters like Picasso, Monet and Van Gogh painted what they saw in their natural world. A corn field, the corner Pub, a friend, a sunset. If I could make one point in this article is this: every image you see even a bird sitting on a telephone wire does something to you in some way whether you know it or not.
We are sponges that soak up all our experiences. In the next article I will prove how images we see even for a fleeting moment can change the course of our lives.
Look at some of the older paintings. Picasso paints some of his friends. Renoir paints people at a party. Monet paints water lilies and bridges. And lastly Van Gogh paints his room with his bed in it. The reason in all these cases that these artists painted these things is simple. It’s because they were inspired to do so.
In my opinion there are only 2 ways to paint as it relates to subject matter. The first is to paint the things that are in your real world. The second it to paint from your imagination. I am more from the camp of painting from my imagination. I see no point in painting a tree or a stream in the style of realism when you can just as easily take a photo of it. My paintings are of things you can’t see in the real world therefore through my creative abilities I take an image that exists in my mind and I bring it into the real world for others to see and enjoy. Here is an example of what I mean.
This is a painting of Venice that I made. I have never been to Venice. I created it from my mind. This painting is featured in Book #9 in my 12 book series “The Art of Sharzay” found on LuLu.Com
How is this possible for me to paint a picture of Venice when I have never been there? Simple! I watched videos of it and then created this particular scene from my imagination.
If the process of creating is “the car”, inspiration is “the fuel”. In my case all the experiences I had and all the people I knew contributed to the person I know today as “ME”. How, after 40 years could I remember Tony’s and Pioneer and Nellie’s so accurately when all this time has passed? Simple because the images are burned into my mind.
So I give you my first article of how it all began for me. My life has been quite interesting and there have been many “highs” and “lows”. The series will go into both areas. Read my next article to find out what happened after I created “Doorknobs”. I look forward to sharing more about my art and my life with you in Article #2. For those who would like to see some of my paintings, my website address is WWW.SHARZAY.COM