Shaker Woods Shakerwoods Festival Columbiana, Ohio
Shaker Woods Shakerwoods Festival Columbiana, Ohio Shaker Woods Shakerwoods Festival Columbiana, Ohio Shaker Woods Shakerwoods Festival Columbiana, Ohio

Shaker Woods ~ Festival Articles: Archive


BISHOP: PAINTING CAREER SPINS OFF FROM CHILDREN

Lasalle, Ontario, Canada _ Robert Bishop was quite happy with his chosen vocation as a professional child and youth therapist. He worked at a Windsor, Ontario, hospital where he leaned heavily on art therapy to inspire the children to find their hidden inner strength.

“If you asked me who inspired me to move from art therapy into a career as a painter, the first person who comes to mind is Kathy, a nurse who worked at the therapy center,” Robert says. “She would often elbow me as she passed my station and say, ‘aren’t you doing anything else with your art talent?’”

Robert believes Kathy may have spoken to his supervisor who then asked him if he could do a painting for him. He knew I couldn’t resist a challenge. A month later, the artist took the man a picture and the supervisor encouraged him to do another one.

“’I think you can do better,’ my supervisor said to me and when I brought him the second version, he asked me which one I liked better. I knew he was encouraging me and shortly after that a bunch of my coworkers convinced me to paint murals on the walls for Christmas. The kids loved them and it made the area more kid friendly.”

He might have continued painting as a therapy tool and avocation, but he had always had back pain that doctors said might one day require surgery. One day while he was working with the children, his back went into a spasm and he couldn’t walk. He couldn’t keep up with the children who were running through the woods. One child noticed he had fallen and came back to get help for him.

“I knew I couldn’t continue to be responsible for the children and I didn’t want surgery at that point in my life. My wife, Patty, agreed with me that God was leading us to take a leap of faith into painting fulltime. It seemed an unlikely career choice since I’m color blind, but Patty has a remarkable capacity for adjusting my color palette.”

His work is so realistic, you will feel like you’re experiencing his sunsets or walking on the beaches he paints. The pet paintings that are one of his specialties inspire viewers to want to reach out and touch them.

This spring, the Bishops saw a pair of eagles circling their nest about a half-mile from Shaker Woods.

“I had to paint those eagles and I hope to have the original finished in time to show it at Shaker Woods this summer.”

Find Patty and Robert Bishop in booth 181.

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Shaker Woods Shakerwoods Festival Columbiana, Ohio

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