Today I’d like to welcome artist, Jerry Rubin to my blog with the first Q & A of 2022. I met Jerry this year in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Jerry is a fun guy. His humor just clicked with mine. Even his logo signature on his email says, ‘Ciao for now’, one of my favorite goodbye slogans. He’s a casual guy with a kind heart and has the perfect relationship with his other half, Wendy.
We all met in the pool. Jerry is an interesting guy with lots of talents and when I saw his art I was really taken in with his painting style of which I call somewhere between Warhol and Picasso -ish with elaborate colors, which attracts my eye. So one day in one of our afternoon group visits in the pool, I asked Jerry if he’d like to come over to my blog to be featured and he was happy to.
Jerry has done a lot of different entrepeneurial things in his career and was successful at them all, while having fun at what he was doing. To name a few, Jerry sent me this in an email, I wasn’t sure if he was telling me this stuff or wanted me to put it in his bio. And since he’s told me many stories about his glory days, this doesn’t surprise me:
About Jerry Rubin:
I have been virtually everything in my life except a “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy” and my journey is not over. For the last 10 years the evolution has been to full time artist, with many artistic and stylistic digressions along the way. My paintings now have a more graphic arts look, while maintaining my signature “bold and brighter than bright” colour palette. I intend for every one of them to make a statement, to be eye catching, and to be conversation pieces. My latest series titled “Animalia” captures the fun and joy I had painting them… and that the viewer hopefully shares.
I am a lifelong proud Winnipegger with paintings hanging in homes and offices worldwide. I have exhibited in galleries in Canada, the USA, and Mexico and am overjoyed to have been “The Artist in Residence” at “The International Gallery” in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico for the past 7 years; sweet gig eh?
A Bit more About Jerry:
I always had 2 or 3 businesses going while teaching: food manufacturing company, ice cream parlour owner, acrylic shelving manufacturer, sold 3,500 new items a year in the early eBay years, food concession for 17 years at the local fair (think PNE), day camp director, home renovation company, jewelry importer, author, and more. A college text book called “Small Business Entrepreneurship” had a chapter about my ventures. When I retired from teaching I took the little jewelry biz and pushed it… maybe too hard. It became a national coast to coast company with approximately 1,700 retail outlets that carried my products. I did about 30 wholesale trade shows yearly only for retailers two or three times a year in each of Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Toronto (I had dozens of retailers in Toronto with the ROM being one of the biggies), Montreal, Ottawa, and Halifax. During my business career, due to my experience in marketing my jewelry biz, I was recruited by a division of K-Tel to be their marketing consultant. Turned to art only after I sold the business. So, while I loved teaching it’s just a fraction of who I am.
.At 18 I entered the Faculty of Fine Arts but after 2 weeks I said, “Someday I’d like to eat for a living!” and switched to the Faculty of Education. Taught for 35 years while entrepreneuring, then full time biz once I “retired”. I loved and worked hard at teaching but loved business and probably worked harder then. Took up art only once I sold my business, about 10 years ago.
~ ~ ~
Jerry the artist has a quote he mentioned to me a few times in one of our pool chats: “I’d rather write than paint.” And I said, he can do both!
Jerry has done lots of writing for national business trade magazines in Canada and the US, always with a sense of humour/fun. He did a biweekly full page article for the PV Mirror at one time. Book reviews for the newspaper and a few articles for them. Articles for teacher magazines, etc.
“Honestly I think now that I’m busy messaging and texting people 8 hours a day on social media it has filled that need!” ~ Jerry Rubin.
Below are just some of the beautiful artworks of Jerry Rubin:
This one is my favorite because something about the color and especially the title draws me in. My husband used to call me, The Lady in Red.
Now, I’ll welcome to Jerry to my blog. I hope you enjoyed just some of his artwork. Now we’ll get into some Q & A and get to know more about Jerry.
Do some of your own character traits or personal experiences spill into your art?
“I yam what I yam and that’s all what I yam”… OK so I’m not Popeye The Sailor Man but I yam irreverent, outspoken, colourful, creative, and with much enthusiasm uncurbed. Trust me I’m a whole hell of a lot nicer/kinder person than he is, but some of my friends call me “Jerry David” and I can see it.
DG – Lol Jer, you are a doppelganger for Larry David!
What type of art do you create and what is your favorite medium for painting, and why?
I have coined the phrase “Art That Pops” to describe my style cuz it’s sorta pop art and sorta not pop, but it definitely pops. Colour and lots of it is typically my trademark, in fact the depth of colour that I aim for is not available in a commercial form so I generally recoat each colour 4 times to achieve what I want. That’s painstaking and very labour intensive (nuts also comes to mind): the first coat is fun, the second coat not so much, the third coat is drudgery, and by the fourth coat I just wanna shoot myself in the head. I did a painting with an umbrella in it which had 17 different colours, so 17×4+=68 coats with drying time in between!!! Crazy.
DG – Wow, that is fascinating Jer. Who knew how much goes into a painting!
I love how you title your art. If feels as though you so effortlessly come up with appropriate titles. Am I right, or do you struggle with captions?
I have more fun thinking up the titles than actually doing the paintings, and once the title hits me the painting somehow gets better! A painting is much joy mixed with struggle, stress, frustration, and more brain power than anyone, other than an artist, can ever imagine. I go to sleep working things out in my mind and wake up the same way. I have occasionally solved an issue in my sleep; a subconscious “Eureka” moment. As Picasso famously said, “If the painting doesn’t give you trouble it’s no damn good.”
DG – I love that!
What spurs your creativity to paint?
Excitement is the stir stick. When I finally arrive at what I want to paint and have juggled the logistics around in my mind so I can pretty well picture it, I get almost (strike out almost!) giddy with excitement and can’t wait to begin. The fun never lasts through the entire work but it always begins and ends with that.
DG – I would have to add, just like writing. 😊
Is there an overall theme your collective art presents, or do you paint on a whim?
I go in themes and for the past year I’ve been doing a very unique form of Animalia art which has taken on a life of its own. By that I mean a few things:
1. I love every piece; before, during, and after
2. They are incredible fun to do
3. Everyone has a favourite animal so the appeal is broad and instant
4. They sell faster than anything I’ve ever done (how’s that for incentive?)
5. They are well priced; more expensive pieces require decisions but at their price range they can be impulse sales
6. I have been in galleries and shot the lights out with them
7. I even sold a piece to someone in Tehran! Tehran of all places!!!
DG – Seems to me you are a great marketing man too!
If you had a redo chance, would you have put art ahead of teaching?
Let me tell you about my teaching career and then you can decide. Usually I taught either grade 4 or 5 and my technique of hooking kids on learning was to tell stories, dance, sing, laugh, entertain… make the day a blast that they’d want to come back to. The kids thought I was God and it worked cuz I didn’t tell them I wasn’t.
DG – Lol Jer, you are so funny, but I don’t doubt for a moment how much the kids enjoyed you.
How do you promote your work? Do you find marketing overwhelming like many of us writers do?
Are you kidding? I’m a self promoter and believe that success in art isn’t necessarily based on talent but on “A Cult of Personality” ie: Andy Warhol, Dali, Picasso. There are millions of artists more talented than I but I’m much more successful than most because I market myself and my art through who I am. Sure I was a teacher but I had a huge success after teaching in creating a national company with 1,700 retail outlets and I did that the same way. That success led to a career as a marketing consultant for a division of the telemarketing industry giant K-Tel ,the the formation of my own marketing company BizBuilderCanada.
DG – You are definitely a ‘cult of personality’, and like I pegged your art when I first saw photos, Warhol/Picasso, and yes, definitely some Dali!
Thanks so much for visiting with us today Jer. Your artwork is so inspiring and I’m thrilled to be able to share it here with many readers and writing friends. I also hope they will visit your website and get more inspired.
Find Jerry on Social Media: