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Series: Southern Life and The Goat Man of Georgia

I've working on a series of paintings that will fall under the heading Southern Life. These cohesive scenes are pulled from my childhood, from my experiences, from my observations of life around me, and from stories handed down. "Learning from Mama" is a painting of a mother and daughter hanging clothes on the outside line to dry. Growing up in the 1960s and 1970s in rural Georgia, I was assigned chores such as this. I had a certain way of hanging shirts and pants. I loved hanging the sheets and towels. They were easy to line up and I thought they were beautiful when a slight breeze lifted them.

You'll find other paintings in the gallery, and I'll add more along and along. If you have a scene you'd like for me to paint for you, let me know. We'll discuss the details and see if I'm a right fit for your dream.

Right now, I'm painting "Shelling Peas," "Hopping the Train," "Picking Blackberries," "Ironing," "Baking Biscuits," and a few others for the Southern Life series. I have numerous paintings going at the same time. The process of drying and glazing requires that many of my projects sit for some time, giving me the opportunity to work on several paintings.

I've nearly completed the first painting in a series I'm calling "The Goat Man of Georgia." In the 50s, 60s, and early 70s, the goat man, Ches McCartney, made his way through many parts of Georgia. He didn't limit himself to Hwy 41 where he passed through Tifton, but in my area of Georgia, he often came down that particular highway, stopping traffic as he approached towns, gathering followers who came out of their homes to see him. Many, hearing that he was nearby, loaded their children into cars and trucks and flocked to see him. When I think of Mr. McCartney, I think of a man clinging to the unraveling threads of his life, holding the fabric of himself together with a team of goats. When his wife left him, taking their son, at the time his only child, he found solace in the goats that relied on him for their care. The animals kept him busy and perhaps gave him affection. When the Goat Man's other marriages failed, his goats needed him. When he felt alone, crowds would come to see him and his wagon packed to the brim, overflowing with items. They'd come to see him and his goats. I'm not pretending that my thoughts on the goat man are correct. I'm simply telling you what comes to mind when I look at photos of Mr. McCartney through the years. His wagon grew over time. In the pictures I see a wagon that expanded and carried more items such as wash pans, signs, oil cans, a canvas, blankets, and much more. His team of goats grew. And I wonder if his loneliness grew.


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