Art by Robert Gilbert
From the artist's website:
I have been painting and drawing for over 50 years. I think I started about the time I discovered that Birthday cards created by grandchildren were held in high esteem by grandparents.
While working on my bachelor and masters degrees in architecture, I earned part of my tuition by doing wall murals for my friends and watercolor and ink renderings for local architects. After graduation I joined the Air Force where I retired as a Colonel. Since then I have managed my own consulting business, worked as a real estate executive for several major corporations and most recently I have joined my wife in the residential real estate business. My varied jobs have allowed me to live, work and play throughout Europe, Asia and in over a dozen states. My family encouraged me to paint but there was seldom time and I wasn’t ready to concentrate. I played with oils and the old masters technique; sketched buildings in ink, painted murals and drew numerous pencil portraits.
About ten years ago I decided it was time to do something with my interest in painting. I started taking art lessons from the Alexandria Art Institute, Washington DC Capitol Hill Art Workshop and Del Ray Artisans. Gradually I moved into teaching art in private and larger classes and exhibiting my paintings. My paintings have been exhibited at these galleries: Art League, Capitol Hill, Del Ray, Carmen's, Cobblestone, Results Gym, Berkley, and Strathmore Hall.
I think growing up in Seattle with its grays; blues, greens and browns had a definite influence on my style and the colors I prefer. Living internationally, provided me with the opportunity to experience a variety of life styles, environments, and a diversity of colors. This has obviously impacted my painting. While I have painted many portraits, pets, and sport scenes I paint mostly landscapes, cityscapes and waterscapes. As an architect, I'm particularly taken with the monumentality of New York city's buildings and the feeling of power they project, especially at night. Coupled with the vibrancy of the street crowded with people, pulsing with noise and surrounded by light the emotion is overwhelming. Its this that drives many of my paintings. On the other side of the equation my landscapes are usually quiet, subdued and relaxing. In all cases my paintings are realistic, impressionistic and stylistic.
To me, being an artist means to interpret what we see, to add feeling, suggest a mood, simplify and communicate a story. And we need to do all this in a technically competent manner. Good art is not a replication, it is an interpretation. To be a good artist we must follow our instincts, study great paintings and discover what brings us pleasure as we compare our message and our results to that of others. I think good art is the result of hard work, and more hard work with a little inspiration, creativity and luck thrown in.