Parker County Today July 2016 - Page 63

JULY 2016 PA R K E R C O U N T Y T O D AY What to do? What to do? How about painting? He enrolled in a couple of classes at a junior college and discovered art piqued his interest and “was a joy to do and a fun way to express a portion of myself a little bit differently than just being so minutiae-driven, [as I was] for so many years.” A member of the Weatherford Art Association for the past eight years, Shidal’s body of work is decidedly western and rural in theme — cowboys and horses, buffaloes and roadrunners, quaint country churches, the time-worn Spanish missions of San Antonio, and of course, bluebonnets. His first art teacher advised him that painting subject matter he liked would yield the most joy or fulfillment. “I’m watching ‘Lonesome Dove’ right now,” he said the Sunday afternoon we spoke. Concerning western themes, he said, “It’s just something I’ve always been interested in. I must have fifty or seventy-five western movies on DVD. It’s a lifestyle of living, a pure honest life with hard work, and today’s movies don’t really give us those kinds of standards. I think you just see a cowboy who sticks out his hand, shakes and says, ‘That’s what I’m going to do,’ and then he does it. That’s very honorable. The kind of person I want to be.” It just seems to follow that among his favorite artists would be American West masters Frederic Remington and Charles Russell. He also admires contemporary Texas artist George Boutwell’s work. He studied with well-known Texas artists Dan Brown, Doug Prine and Martha Jane Spurlock. “We’re very blessed here by being able to see some truly great western artists’ work right here in town. You get to go in and see their original paintings. Some of these paintings that I only saw in books before I moved to Fort Worth, I actually get to see the original paintings. These have become classics. Anytime you’re down at Amon Carter you’re going to see Charles Russell or Frederic Remington, their works and sculptures. Certainly they challenge us to do our work better.” The son of a military father, Shidal 61