Colin Michael Shaw, St. Louis, MO Member Since May 2008 Artist Statement For well over a decade my painting has explored the deep and unseen within mankind. While color, design, experimentation with varying combinations of media, and use of the figure have been a constant during this period, the underlying theme has essentially been a long and close look at the individual. Much has been learned in my small beginnings. It is my hope and mission that this deliberate work of my life will deepen the viewer's sensitivity to the subjects of my paintings, perhaps unknown to them, and ultimately bridge the emotional gap to those encountered by them in the day-to-day. How ironic that often we pass each other on the way through our hurried lives unaware of what lies just beneath the exterior, only to plop on the couch and tune in to some “reality” show on television that has little or nothing to do with life here on Earth. Our culture glorifies its movie, television, and pop music stars, and ignores the beauty and divinity within the ordinary people that fill this world. I'm looking for the extraordinary qualities seen within the seemingly common people I’ve come to know; the advertising executive who records music in the apartment upstairs, the bartender who writes poetry, the retired grandmother of three who is a master seamstress, the convenience store clerk who creates gourmet meals for two in his tiny kitchen. The idiosyncrasies of the people that populate the real world are what interest me. Their small moments of proud joy and accomplishment, sadness and regret, love and belonging are also mine.