“All that I have in my mind comes out on the canvas. I see horses in thunderstorms, mighty seas breaking on the rocks. And golden sunsets! Oh, so vibrating and powerful! They are all stories.” – Bill Alexander
Bill had an incredible imagination. In every one of Bill’s television shows, he always painted what he saw in his mind. Bill did not need to create one or two or three paintings before he went before the cameras because he was a real artist. Every one of Bill’s creations was an “original”. The reference photo Bill used was in his head. In this edited transcript from Bill’s “Alaskan Hideaway” video, which I have mentioned before, Bill tells us how he uses creative power to begin a painting.
Bill Alexander was more than a painter. He was more than an artist.
When you watch Bill’s videos you will not only see someone who paints beautiful images; but, if you listen to what he says while he is painting, you will learn what makes Bill’s contribution to art so very important.
As a kid I loved watching cartoons. In fact, I still do. I grew up with the cartoons of Mickey Mouse, Bugs Bunny, and Woody Woodpecker. But my favorite cartoon character was Popeye the Sailor. I loved Popeye because of what he said “between the lines”. Some folks might call it “muttering”; but Popeye’s “mutterings” contained true pearls of wisdom and were an expression of his views of life. If you weren’t paying attention, you wouldn’t hear them and they would be lost forever.
When I watch Bill paint it’s as much for his philosophy and words of wisdom as it is to learn how he creates his images. This is what makes Bill’s work so very important for all of us who care about him and are interested in furthering his work.
Bill’s greatest contribution to art was not his paintings, although they are wonderful images conjured up in the mind of a truly imaginative genius.
Bill’s greatest contribution was not his television shows although they were important in getting him known and exposing his work to a broader audience than the hundreds of folks who would flock to the shopping malls to watch him paint early in his career.
Bill’s greatest contribution was not even the model he gave us of his own life and career as interesting and astounding as that was.
Bill’s greatest gift to all of us was to show us that we could create art; that we could become the artist. That we had, within us, an ability to express ourselves in a creative and imaginative way that would empower us to become greater than we dare believed we were.
I have watched many, many artists on YouTube. What I find interesting about most of them is that they really show you little more than how well they paint. I wonder how many folks, after watching some of these painting demonstrations actually pick up a paint brush and start their own art journey. I’m sure there are a few; but it was Bill’s dream that every single person he met would pick up that brush and begin to paint.
In the most recent video we posted on YouTube with the late artist Diane Andre, Bill states, very clearly, his concern about being “only one Bill Alexander”. It was during this period he began to build a training program which would include a cadre of artists who would sweep across America and the world training more and more people to paint.
I truly believe, in Bill’s heart, he felt that painting and art would free people from the chains of fear, inadequacy, and self doubt that he, himself, experienced in his life. Painting would help them become confident, creative individuals who would not only create art for themselves, but would become so excited about their new skills that they would want to continue their journey by teaching others what they learned and experienced.
We know that in order to become better at anything, you need to teach. Only by teaching will the lessons learned become an integral part of your very being. Only by teaching will you reach your fullest potential. Only by teaching can you truly empower another human being to become all they can be.
I have no doubt that if Bill could have taught every single human being on the planet, one on one, to paint, he would have done it. But he couldn’t. However, in the video he also introduced us to the beginnings of the Alexander Certification program.
Near the end of his career, Bill extracted a promise from Laurie to continue his work after he was gone. This is a promise we take very seriously at Alexander Art. It is our driving mission and in the coming months you will see how very serious we are about this!
Bill’s entire life was about giving to others. You can see that in every video he made. The words of encouragement to his viewers to “fire in” with that paint brush, the lightheartedness while he worked to show how enjoyable painting was, and the glee he exuded as he poked fun at the blank canvas were as important as the paintings themselves.
Join us in our campaign to empower old and new students alike with the Bill Alexander method of painting. Help us wake up the creativity that lives in all of us. And help us spread Bill’s mission to everyone on the planet.
You Can Paint, We Promise!
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