Right Brain: Barry Westerlandsum
After a 30-year career in banking, Barry Westerland moved from New Jersey to Summit County.He’s a self-taught artist who began painting in his mid-20s as a hobby and now, in retirement, he has time to focus on his craft. Two galleries already carry his work, and his goal in the next couple of years is to get juried into the Colorado Watercolor Society’s shows and see what he can do from a commercial standpoint.The challenge to continually improve his work keeps him motivated.He displays his work outside of the library at the County Commons near Frisco beginning Thursday, Jan. 6. He hosts a public, opening reception from 5-7 p.m. Jan. 6 at the County Commons. Dreams
My joy in art is simply creating images, which are pleasing to me and, hopefully, to others. I also enjoy the challenge of continually trying to improve my skill, which is best accomplished through work, work and more work.Why do you do it? I started creating art at about age 25 as a hobby. As a career New York City banker, the art I was able to do on the weekends was a wonderful way for me to escape the realities of a stressful job, commute, business travel and so on. Now, in retirement, art is simply a pleasure for me, not only with respect to the finished product but also with the entire process of creating a painting.What do you convey through art? Like many artists, my work is inspired by the beauty I see around me. However, as reflected by my paintings depicting old barns and mills, harborscapes, covered bridges, ghost towns and old cars, I am fascinated with capturing present day images of the past.
ChallengeMy biggest challenge related to art was trying to find enough time to devote to it while being committed to the demands of a banking career, raising children and the responsibilities of family and friends. While I never did have as much time for art as I would have liked, I simply disciplined myself to devote four to five hours every Sunday to creating art until I was retired and time was no longer a constraint.AccomplishmentPrior to moving to Colorado in 2002, art was simply a hobby for me. I did not enter shows or try to sell my work. Since moving to Colorado, I am pleased to have been accepted into a number of shows and into two galleries. In terms of public recognition, I would like to think that my greatest accomplishments are ahead of me.
Staying freshWhile I have what I think is a huge inventory of ideas for paintings, that pool of ideas is easily expanded through travel. My wife Maureen and I travel frequently throughout the U.S. and abroad, and when we return I have many rolls of film to develop for possible painting subjects. In addition, visits to galleries and museums are sure to get me excited to get back to my art studio.When you are not doing art? In addition to travel, we are typical Summit County residents who enjoy biking, hiking, skiing, snowshoeing and the other outdoor activities the mountains offer. I am an artist and owner of the Georgetown Gallery in Georgetown, a member of the Board of Historic Georgetown and on the Audit Committee of the Keystone Symposia. – Kimberly Nicoletti
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