I've mentioned before that I am not the photographer in my marriage. Thatboy has been king of the f-stop since long before he met me, spending a great deal of time in the darkroom before finally seeing the light and going digital. (Did you get all the great wordplay in that last sentence?) On one of our first anniversaries (we just celebrated 9 dating years last week) he gave me a framed print of my favorite of his photos. Jealous, my mom requested one of his prints for herself. And that began many frequent requests for his work. According to Thatboy's framer (I have a butcher, he has a framer...that's the way our life works), once you start getting requests for your work you might want to consider taking the next step and going public. Today Thatboy and I headed home for his first art show. It was a bittersweet day since Thatdad was so excited for this show and was originally planning on attending with us.
Based on the quality of his photographic work, Thatboy had been chosen to take part in a juried art show. The show itself was mixed media and Thatboy was nervous as he set up his selections. "I think I'm the youngest one here," he told me. "Everyone else has other outlets where they sell or show their work. Some of them are already established in one medium, and are using this as an opportunity to try out a new one."
As the hours went by, Thatboy got more and more anxious. Finally the time came to get his results. The artists filed into the room. I watched as many of them filed back out again. Some with tears in their eyes. More and more came, but not Thatboy. I sent up a silent prayer. After what felt like forever Thatboy appeared with the biggest smile on his face. Not only had he received great scores, but he had earned himself a place to permanently show and sell his work. Thatdad would have been so proud. We both were crying as we thought about that on the way back to our cars.
So next time you're headed to San Diego, you'll have to drop me a line so I can tell you where to swing by and pick up a Thatboy original. And those of you who are lucky enough to already have one, they may finally be worth more than the paper they were printed on!