I had a Mentally Handicapped (Officially, TMR, or Trainable Mentally Retarded) friend when I was growing up named David Winneguth, a.k.a. "Big David". He was a BIG Kid. I use to participate training him for athletic events in the Special Olympics when I was nine years old, to seventeen.
Later on in life he settled down the street from me here in Carpinteria, where he became part of the fabric of the town's culture. Everyone knew him and appreciated his quirky antics. He was quite a character.
A few years ago, he died unexpectedly, after chowing down on one of his favorite meals; a hot dog from the Spot--(a Hamburger Stand next door.)
I was moved when I heard of his passing. Probably because I took life for granted, and I didn't get a chance to say good-by to this man...my childhood friend. The night of his unexpected departure, I grabbed my painting gear and went out to search for a motif, by myself. I intended to dedicate a painting to David.
I went down to the Carpinteria Bluffs where I witnessed a quarter moon hovering, and peeking through the stratocumulus, over the Santa Barbara Channel. There was nobody around but David (in Spirit) the Moon, and me. The crashing waves below the bluffs was the only sound I could hear. The salty mist permeated the air as I documented the moment in solace.
It does me good to paint for those who have passed on. I feel it gives me a moment for atonement, (at-one-meant), with them in spirit; express appreciation for the divine moments we shared, and a glimpse of the world that they no longer are able to see.
Collection of the Artist