Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Painting a Vision: A Return to a childhood passion has helped Shane reconnect with himself

This is the first time I have outright interviewed someone for an article!

But the story of my business neighbor, forty-nine year old Shane Robertson, inspired me!

Shane’s fond memories of growing up in the Midwest are rich in deep memories of the days and hours spent with his grandfather. Together he and his granddad had hunted, fished, trapped, and painted, “He was a true renaissance man; Grandpa could do anything.” Robertson says of this man that taught him so much. Drawing and painting were pastimes that Shane took too naturally, and developed a great passion for. Though their time together was cut short when his grandpa passed away when Robertson was nine, the spirit of adventure and creativity never left him.

Robertson continued to draw throughout his school years, becoming very proficient in graphite and color pencil work in his teen years. Mystical images of beautiful maidens on horseback, in misty lands matured into desert scenes. But, like so many things about life, in his early twenties the need to earn a living took precedence, and he set his artistic passion aside. He sold and gave away all of his tools, supplies, drawings and paintings, and set out to explore what seemed at the time, grander and more important things.

Robertson spent a few years fishing in the Barring Sea of Alaska. Of this, he says it was the hardest job he’s ever had. “One winter night, we were wakened just a short time into our already limited sleep, to dress quickly and get up on deck! The vessel was listing because waves had built up a thick layer of ice on one side of the boat; up over the rails, and onto the deck. We had to take bars and bats and anything we could get our hands on to bust up the ice and get it off the boat!” While he is glad that he experienced this dangerous job, it’s not one he says he would do again! “But,” he adds, “It does give a greater appreciation for that piece of fish you are served at a restaurant, or buy at the store!”

His most recent career years were in the property management industry, working with one of the largest management companies in the country. He has had the opportunity to live in some luxurious urban buildings, sometimes living alongside local celebrities such as Russell Wilson.

Recently married to his wife Jeneen, and living on picturesque Lake Rosiger, Robertson’s childhood passion for painting began to reemerge about a year ago, as his form of relaxation and meditation amid his hectic work responsibilities. Then when his career in property maintenance came to an end a few months ago, he sat back and thought about what he really wanted to do with his life, and recognized that his passion for art helps him feel grounded and had become an almost daily necessity.

In re-exploring his art, Robertson has developed what might be called his signature style. Dubbed his “Kalli style”, he first painted this technique for and then named it after, his granddaughter Kalliope. Robertson is also experimenting with and exploring other techniques and styles with acrylic paints. His paintings are full of vivid colors and rich textures that easily draw the viewer in. Layers of color, technique and texture merge to delight the eye, and provide much for the mind to explore. One might spend quite a long time examining one of his pieces and never really take in all of the detail and depth he creates.

Robertson has recently rented a small space in downtown Granite Falls as his studio, where he and his dog Beauregard can be found hanging out together to the sounds of heavy metal music, and bringing life to the amazingly beautiful art that has it’s genesis in Robertson’s mind!
A beautiful example of Shane Robertson's Signature "Kalli Style" painting.

At this time, Robertson only sells his art on occasion when commissioned. Most of it is created as gifts for family and friends as he studies and explores new mediums and techniques during his job searching process. He is considering showing some his pieces at the upcoming Granite Falls, WA 49th annual Rail Road Days Street Fair, “Just for the fun of meeting people and introducing myself to the community”.

Exploring your passions is an amazing part of
Living Well!
Your Rural Girl,