Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Stories from the New Vision Heron Mural

Story #1:     I’ve known this guy since we were teenagers.  He respected and supported me as an artist, even back in the late ‘70’s!  We’ve been Facebook friends for some time and when the New Vision Heron Mural project went live on USA Projects he really wasn’t in position to make a donation. 
And yet he did. 
He waited until the project reached 5% funding and when the USA Projects Open Match Fund began matching donations dollar-for-dollar he pulled the trigger.  He doubled his contribution.
This small donation, done cleverly, has been the most touching contribution of my campaign because of my old friend’s personal situation.  It didn’t stop him from continuing to support me and I so appreciate it!
Through this I personally understand Luke 21: 1-4!
  Story #2:     Family matters brought us all together last week as I continued to administer The New Vision Heron Mural throughout the visit.  This involved so much writing:  a midpoint report, Facebook links and rounds of emails!
On his final evening, my oldest brother mentioned that he had received my emails and that he would make a contribution.  We hugged and I told him how much it meant to me—I hadn’t mentioned anything directly to him, because of his strong political beliefs about government funding of arts.
The following day as we drove to the airport I talked about all the different aspects of a micro-philanthropy project, how much work it was to simply be listed with USA Projects and that feeling of accomplishment, only to realize that now the funds needed to be raised!  This is not for the lazy or faint of heart! 
A couple of days later my brother made a solid donation that sent the project over the 45% funded mark!
But the “Priceless” moment is when you realize that what you think is possible has changed.  It takes consistent and concentrated effort, and follow-through.  It requires success minded thinking through every conversation and the weeks of lulls.  It takes work and faith.
Again, I want to thank everyone who has donated to The New Heron Mural Project!  Your support is inspiring me to do my very best to see this aspect of the project through to its successful end, and to create a beautiful work of art.
Time is running out and there is still a long way to go!  Please donate to my project http://www.usaprojects.org/project/new_vision_heron_mural
 Contact me if you have any questions!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Midpoint Report for the New Vision Heron Mural Project

Three weeks remain in the New Vision Heron Mural project’s fundraiser on the USA Projects micro-philanthropy website.  It’s a process of ebb and flow, sometimes up to a week passes with no donations, and then a flurry of activity as updates and various appeals register. 

As of this writing, we have nearly $2,500 in donations and are over 40% funded!  I love these numbers and, believe me, when notices of new contributions come through it is THRILLING!  While not precisely at the halfway level of funding, we are within striking distance; and with half the time left to raise the funds I remain confident!

$5,800 must be raised by midnight, July 31st.  Crowd funding and micro-philanthropy both work on the same “all or nothing” model where all funds need to be raised for the artist to receive any of the monies.  Your contributions are all extremely important to the success of this project!

Thank you so much to those of you who have already followed through on your desire to give!  I also want to thank those of you who have made the commitment in your heart to give and have contacted me with your pledge!  The finish line is in sight and your donations are absolutely necessary to meet this project’s goals!

I spoke with Max Verbits, an old friend and arts proponent in Salisbury, MD a short time ago.  He spoke of the city needing “Gateway Markers” and how this project spoke directly to that need, identifying the downtown area. 

Max also pointed out the significance of waterfowl (and so public waterfowl imagery) to the entire area.  Waterfowl symbolize the area culturally, historically and environmentally; and the mural’s location in Salisbury, MD, is PERFECT!  Salisbury is perched in the middle of the Atlantic Flyway—the main North-South thoroughfare for migrating birds, east of the Mississippi River!

And finally on a personal note, this week my father has died.  After 13 years of Alzheimer’s disease he departed this life…it has brought home the feelings and image of the original heron mural in ways that I had forgotten.  To be revisiting this image at this time is amazing and heart rending as that first mural was created in the wake of my first wife’s death (breast cancer).

As I have been regarding the heron mural, I do not see a symbol of death but an image of spirit:  bold, poised for departure; I also see it depicting those who are Strong but tested, and standing ready.  These are fine associations for a public work and for this town on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.

If you have not already joined this project with a contribution, please visit the project page and consider becoming part of this New Vision.