Some artists are focused on a specific style or subject matter of art. Gail has never done that. That didn’t mean he didn’t try. He said one of his goals was to develop a distinctive style but it just never happened. When you look at his website and see the variety of styles and subject matter, it is easy to see he is comfortable using whatever style that is needed to get his ideas across.
So when I asked him how his creativity, goals or approach to art have changed as he has matured, I was expecting a long, drawn-out explanation of how he is more thoughtful or he has focused more on style or he has moved to try different techniques that he has never done before. I was not prepared to hear him say that he is not doing art and hasn’t since some health issues have minimized his energy levels to the point where he just couldn’t focus. It’s not that he doesn’t want to paint or has that he has lost interest in having a creative outlet. That drive is still there. He is frustrated with the situation as it is and is working with doctors to reverse this situation. It has left him frustrated and impatient to figure out the issues so that they can be reversed and he can get back to doing what he loves.
The bottom line is age-related health issues can sidetrack even the most creative minds from reaching for their dreams. This is something many older adults have expressed. The question becomes not if but when the issues can or will be reversed and a new direction established, what will the outcome be? Gail is not sitting back and passively accepting the current situation. Time will tell how successful his current path will be in allowing him to get back to what he loves most: telling stories on canvas.