Monday, August 04, 2008

Crossing the electronic line

On rare occasions in the past, I have crossed the electronic line; from a friendship made via the Web, to a bridge crossing from the virtual world into the world of the "real." This weekend, I ventured out of the Web to meet the young woman behind her virtual personage. It all began about a month and a half ago, when...

On June 21th, Mrs. Dada and I attended an outdoor event sponsored by the El Paso Museum of Art. Entitled "Chalk the Block," we enjoyed walking among the artists and their creations as they were being put down on the sidewalks around the museum in the interesting medium of chalk.

I blogged about it that afternoon here. Five days later in the comment section of that blog, I received a message from one of the artists who had apparently Googled the event and visited that blog. Through e-mails, we struck up a conversation. Evolving into friendship over the weeks that followed, I learned that "Wendy" was a very talented local artist just out of high school who will be attending college here this fall.

Being an art student myself several hundred years ago, I was very impressed with Wendy's talent in multiple media, her enthusiasm for art, her prodigious output and the numerous art projects she is engaged in locally. Besides Chalk the Block, she is also involved with working on art with youths through the YMCA, plus doing local exhibits. I learned her current "big project" involves her design which was chosen for a mural on a new shopping center, soon to adorn a wall there.

Artist's sketch of proposed mural for the Outlet Shoppes of El Paso mall.

I also discovered Wendy's talent had earned her the top scholarship awarded by a local group to encourage up and coming artists. I was very impressed and I find her enthusiasm extremely contagious, i.e., thoughts of setting up the old easel again have been dancing across my brain in recent weeks.

So, at Wendy's invitation, Mrs. Dada and I decided to attend the opening reception of the art show, "Western Impressions" this past Friday evening into which she had two entries accepted.

The exhibit's opening was very well attended. There was a festive exuberance among attendees. and the work on display there was pretty impressive.

Mrs. Dada took this photo which I had to crop the artist on my left from because I forgot to ask if he would mind me blogging it. Besides Wendy's positive enthusiasm that manifests in her art, a wonderful epiphany occurred this evening because of her. For the fellow whose image was cut from this photo is an old university classmate of mine from the 70's. He also had two paintings in the show. I hadn't seen him since November, 1985!

Thanks Wendy for a very nice evening. Mrs. Dada and I really enjoyed getting to finally meet you; to meet your mom, and see that great oil and pastel you had in the show. I look forward to seeing that mural in the new mall soon!

Wendy beside her oil, "Reflections of a Life" (photo courtesy of the artist)
While you may not be able to see it, the subject stares out at us behind teary eyes.


eProf2 said...

What a great story. Wendy's painting reminds me of Tommy Lee Jones (stretching a bit, I'm sure), one of my favorite actors of late. Thanks for sharing, and I'm looking forward to see the missing photos.

Wendy said...

Wow Mr. Dada!!!!

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE NICE BLOG!!!!! I can't thank you enough for going to these two events (last one being the "*cosmic*" one since I got the awesome priviledge of meeting both you and Mrs. Dada!!) I feel extremely lucky to have had found such a nice friend, and even more when we "crossed the electronice line"! (Hey! Love the title!!)

Have to thank you here in Dada's Dally too, about the BIG sacrifice you and Mrs. Dada did to go to the WIAS reception! I REALLY enjoyed your presence, the highlight of the night indeed!!! And it just made my day meeting you two!!!! Pff...I was SOOO happy!!!!!!! I really hope to see you in future events, including the Mural!!

It's too much of a NICE coincidence being in Chalk the Block, You and Mrs. Dada taking pictures(without me even noticing!), You Blogging it, Me being noisy and searching google for some posts on Chalk the Block, Me finding "Dada's Dally" blog on Chalk the Block, Me reading the part "...sorry I didn't get the Artist's name...", Me Posting a thank-you comment and asking for more pictures, You answering e-mail.......and that's how in a blink of an eye got to know the GREAT Mr. Dada and his LOVELY Mrs. Dada!!!!!!!!

Thank you for everything!!! Again, I'm really flattered with your words here, and can't thank you enough for everything!!!

Don't worry about the pictures! I'm sorry about your computer!!

I also, gotta admit, feel very SPECIAL and happy for what you said about my "extremely contagious enthusiasm" that in some way made you think about "setting up the old easel again"!!!!!!!!!

THANK YOU MR DADA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Say hi to Mrs. Dada for me, please!!!!

Good Night!! =))

Border Explorer said...

What a wonderful post! Wendy, if you're listening: you make me proud to be (a part-time) El Pasoan. Who knows, maybe we'll meet, too, someday. Best to you as you continue your education. I love your work. And I agree: there's no topping the Dada's.

dada said...

Well, aren't y'all being so very nice; so complimentary! Thank YOU all for stopping by regularly and often. Thanks again for the extra pics, Wendy. (I'm still working from the Mac, but two of the three I wanted to upload finally did this morning, but one I'm trying to edit a bit, won't.)

Short note: I was debating whether to go to the art exhibit reception last Friday eve but didn't want to miss getting to finally meet Wendy.

See, I'm not wearing those shades to make me look "cool" (or "cooler"? Haha!) No, they were there to cover up a stye in my eye.

But as part of the 'mysticism' that came along with meeting Wendy was the bringing together me and an old school chum at the reception I hadn't seen in almost 23 years.

In visiting with him before Wendy found us, he mentioned he had thought of me just recently which brings up the idea of quantum physics'non-locality theory, because I had been thinking of him recently also. (Mostly because of talking with Wendy telling of her art instructor exhibiting somewhere -- the same place my old friend just happened to be showing.)

Then his name popped up in the paper around that time; then I saw he was showing in this same exhibit Wendy was in. And so on....

But it reminded me of how I wonder whenever you think of someone you haven't seen or even thought of in a long time, if they might not be thinking of you around that same time?

Another interesting synchronicity about this show. The very morning of its opening, I was reading the local paper section with the "society" photos and thinking, "I'll never get my picture on that page. Wonder who I'd have to 'hang with' to get my picture on that page?"

That night, as we entered the exhibit, a photographer from the El Paso Times approached Mrs. Dada and I asking, "Do you mind if I take your picture for the paper?" I don't know if it will be published or not (there's up to a couple weeks lag in these type pics), but at least I answered the question I'd asked myself earlier that day.

So there I was, getting my picture taken with my 'cool' shades on! Those are just a couple examples of the *cosmic* things that happen when around Wendy! (Thanks for opening up that other dimension Wendy!)

enigma4ever said...

Oh this is so wonderful...and you are supporting a young talented artist...she is amazing...I love Chalk beautiful...and hey Dada is that you in the last piece of art ???


dada said...

Hi enigma. No, afraid that's not me. That guy in the painting's a lot younger than I!

Wendy said...

Wow! These are really nice comments indeed Mr. Dada! Thank you ALL very much!! =))

Border explorer, hope I could have the honor one day to meet you too! I wonder if you reside in El Paso... =)Thank you very much for the nice comment!

ooo enigma! I think I started this painting two days before I met Mr. Dada ( chalk the block )...but if so, it would had been cool if the painting showed Mr. and Mrs. Dada and of course their little doggy =)

Mr. Dada!!! I will be sending you a jpg of the last pastel, which I just finished some minutes ago...remember I told you about it?? =))

Femail doc said...

I crossed the electronic line several years ago. Met an American woman of my certain age demographic living in Athens, and ending up spending my 50th birthday there. Fabulous. My daughter declared it sketchy, but how sketchy can a friendship be that starts on a menopause forum?

I think these sorts of stories defy the charges that the Internet is wrecking interpersonal relationships.

dada said...

Wendy! Thank you sooo much for sending your latest pastel. I loved it -- as did Mrs. Dada. (I will send an e-mail soon). The colors just draw you toward it from across the room.

BTW, in the (future) studio-to-be earlier this afternoon, I happened across one of my two practice pastels. Something you said earlier about using a brush drew me to the easel there. Drawing a nearby brush I attacked the pastel (gently at first) and the effect was nice! It was very much like painting again. TY! (With no messy brush to clean up afterwards!)

dada said...

femail doc: Thanks for stopping by. What a great story of crossing over the electronic line.

I couldn't agree more, i.e., rather than the internet ruining interpersonal relationships, it's but another venue to encounter others of similar interests, with the possibility for real friendships to develop from the virtual.

Yours is a wonderful example. Appreciate you sharing a bit of it with us here. TY!

Wendy said...

Hi Mr. Dada!!

I'm happy you and Mrs. Dada liked it! =) You know, I send it to my art teacher too, and he said I should cool down the skin color, but what I fail to tell him was that I did it intentionally; I used straight yellow on the face (just to play a little with the colors). I don't that forbidden?!

And yes! That's a marvellous technique!! (I never thought of it either, just until I went to the chalk the block workshop!) It's amazing eh!! And it's great when working on layers! It does dry fast, but its no big deal like acrylics!! hehe! I wonder in what surface did you try it in...since I have only tried it on the pavement!!! =))

Yeaa! Gotta agreed too that femail doc's story is really awesome!! That's very adventurous to meet somebody on the other side of the world! Meeting Mr. Dada was locally, yet exuberant!! I have a friend I met 4 yrs ago on a forum, she's from Finland, and we are the same age too! We always talk through msn and webcam...I wish we could meet one day like femail doc did with her friend!!!

dada said...

Wendy: I thought what made your latest pastel so very striking was precisely the bold use of color in the face of the portrait. The whole work really jumps out at you. I imagine even more so from across the room, especially with the contrasting, complimentary colored background. Very striking!

So, no, that's not forbidden. You were just making good use of your artistic license. (It hasn't expired, has it? -- Just kidding!)

Stay in touch with your friend from Finland and who knows? Maybe you'll meet some day, too, just like femaildoc met hers in Athens.

(So, which language do you use to communicate with your Finnish friend?)