A few weeks ago I was on a Facebook group page for illustrators, where people from around the world share their artwork. There I saw a painting of a brick-red church that looked familiar.
I looked at the title and sure enough, it was the Minnekirken, a church that I walk past on a weekly basis
And the artist was having a showing of his work near my favorite Starbucks. How funny! So I had to contact him and meet him in person
I was amazed to learn that he’s only been painting since 2000 at age
We talked and joked about so many other late bloomers, like Van Gogh, who had his first exhibition at age 32, or how Toni Morrison published her first book at 40.
“I had no idea that you could start [painting)] so late in life,” Fullerton said. “I didn’t know that you could learn, but you can”.
And apparently, those who can do, teach. Stuart learned to paint at the Palette and Chisel Academy of Fine Arts (1012 N. Dearborn Ave.), and now he teaches a class there every Saturday.
I think that Bob Ross, who taught me and so many others how to paint happy trees and landscapes, would be proud.
You can see Fullerton’s oil paintings and charcoal drawings on Instagram or in person, adorning the walls at Buona Terra Ristorante (2535 N. California Avenue), a family-owned Italian restaurant that is near to dear to him.
“Buona Terra was my father’s favorite restaurant to eat when he would visit me,” Fullerton said. “I love this place; I’m so grateful to hang my stuff here.”
For those of you who enjoy art but believe that you could never be an artist, relax. It’s never too late.
Speaking as someone who traded in his brushes and paints for Photoshop and never dreamed that anyone would read his words or care for his thoughts, I can tell you that life is not lived in a straight line.