Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Moment Before…

Just Before You Leap...

So this week Kristy, the girls and I went to the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery (one of my favorite museums in DC) to see the current Norman Rockwell exhibit. Deep inside I have always had a fascination for Rockwell. In many ways I always saw his work as an advertisement for the American way. Capturing the sense of what was truly American of that time, while in the same brush stroke putting together a whole story in one image.

The day started out with all the right mood setters. For the first time in my life I was able to park right in front of the museum, we walked up and in five minutes the museum opened. While we waited and stood on the steps into the building I thought of all those that had come to this building when it was the Patent and Trademark building. Hopes, dreams, crazy ideas and inventions that would move the country, the world and business ahead. All walking up these same steps, model in hand waiting to see if they could become a part of the American dream and the annals of US history (once you are awarded a patent your name will live on!)

So in we went to see this private collection of George Lucas and Steven Spielberg of artwork by Rockwell. We went to the movie first and it was a great set up. Made me begin to remember how ingrained Rockwell’s images are part of my past and also capture a time in American that the possablities where there, the compassion was there and a sense of “together we all make this a great country.”
In the words of both Lucas and Spielberg (summarized) is the thinking that Rockwell was a storyteller. That in his art, with one picture he would tell a whole story. What takes a moviemaker a whole movie to tell, he would tell in a single picture. That through his lens he would shape a story of what we hoped America would be. That in a single image he captured volumes of feeling, emotion and a story from start to finish. They both also feel America needs a Rockwell of today, a way to capture this sense of what it means to be American. What we should be as a nation, a people.  We need more story tellers!

It was fun to see what each person collected and learn why and what motivated them to buy which art. The last picture is one of Spielberg’s favorites, if not his most favorite. The artwork hangs in his office as a daily reminder of the emotion, feeling and message behind it.  For him it represents that moment before he takes that leap into a new project, a new movie. That sense of fear, of not knowing what to really expect. The sense of being afraid and thinking can he do it? The moment before the leap is both fear and excitement, but in the end you need to take the leap!

Makes me think of something I once heard, “do what scares you that way you are more awake for the moment and really live in the moment.” 

Do not fear mistakes. You will know failure. Continue to reach out. Benjamin Franklin 

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