Walt's Look Around: Artist Rick Anderson - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Walt's Look Around: Artist Rick Anderson

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GREENVILLE, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

It's a Saturday Morning in Greenville. Rick Anderson is doing again what he did as a career, teaching art. Only this time, it's not school agers who are the students, but their teachers.

The class is "Art Across the Curriculum." The idea is when a related art project is combined with the lesson in the textbook it can really solidify the learning process for students.

"Students learn through tactical and through visual and different methods," said Anderson. "The art just brings a whole new focus to it. And it's fun."

These teachers are from as far away as Cleveland, giving up their Saturday to go to the classroom and learn about how adding an art project to their subject matter, no matter what the subject is, can help bring their lessons home to their students.

Rick is on a two-fold mission here. Because just downstairs is the latest showing of his artwork which opened the night before.

Painting is what Rick used to do in his spare time back while he was a full-time art teacher. Now in retirement, he can devote as much time as he wants to it.

"I painted forever," said Anderson.  "So what I do now is fulltime painting. But I had shows 40 years ago."

Rick's work is ever evolving. His current show features a lot of muted colors on textured canvases.  

"I call it two-dimensional mixed media," said Anderson. "They're all on canvas. And I prepare the canvas with different textures, different canvases that are applied actually before I do any paint. There are different sizes and a lot of them are landscapes, or elements of landscapes and trees."

Rick is an example of the attitude toward retirement that has evolved over time. Not to quit what you were doing as a career if you liked it, but to shift emphasis from HAVING to do it for a living, to WANTING to do it as a lifestyle.

"I am very lucky and very fortunate to have had a teaching career of 25 years transcended into full time artist," said Anderson. "Not that I wasn't full time before but as full time as I could be, and it's just, painting is fun. It's not a job, although it is a business. But it's pleasure at the same time."

Retirement for Rick is a shift in attitude from have to, to want to more than anything else. I suppose you could shift your attitude like that even before you retire.

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