Up at 4am on the plane by 9.30am. Flew out from Dublin and buzzing the whole way to JFK. Very weird when your on an Aer Lingus flight and the guy who sat beside me was called Seamus, what were the chances? Turned out he was a great guy, he worked in New York for around 4 years as a banker, they were all travelling over for a wedding. After the flight I was standing awaiting for my golf bag to show up, I have got to say when I was standing there time stood still, everyone had already collected their bags, I was a little freaked out! longest 25 min ever! Seamus walked over and said, hey jump in with us we're heading downtown too. You sure? OK..
Just after that a member of staff came over and asked me did my bag arrive, oh dear what has happened? She was kind enough to say check another department around the corner for extra large bags....so I basically ran down to the area and there it was in all its glory! My golf Bag!
We all jumped into our taxi and away we went! Seamus, his wife & her friend were great, great laugh travelling into Manhattan. That bit of the journey was a big bit to organise for me, at that time my phone wasn't working and the Taxi area right outside of JFK was crazy! So they helped me out greatly! THANK YOU!!! :)
That was me now dropped off downtown Manhattan....Bags in Co. I remember opening the taxi door and jumping out onto the street and feeling the heat! It was a good day in New York. The Sunshine was blinding and the humidity hit me smack in the face! OK lets do this...grabbed my bags and started walking down the street, I walked for a bit and tried to take in New York, this was my 1st time here. Right, lets get a Taxi! My accommodation was around the 20min mark, 35 min walk, I did think just walk you'll do it but the heat was too much. It was around 16.30 therefore traffic was immense....and it didn't help that I didn't understand the taxi driver and no doubt the taxi driver couldn't understand me but thankfully he knew the address. There was no chance me walking.
Due to the traffic he dropped me off a few blocks away to where I was staying. Traffic was bumper to bumper, I just about made out, 'up there and turn right, you'll be on the same street as your accommodation'. OK thank you I said.
My accommodation was between Little Italy and China Town, so it was rather busy and I had a 22kg bag and my golf bag to wheel about and carry! I'd better not mess up my sat nav directions but of course sometimes my phone would work, then all of sudden it wouldn't connect therefore leaving me walking about using my own sense of direction to somewhere I didn't know :) I was looking for this, the picture below was my key of the apartment I was staying in.
I did have a few wrong turns etc and I did lose about a stone carrying my bags, it was a proper work out, but I got there. I had enough energy to laugh when taking this pic....I felt I was in a computer game completing levels to complete my overall mission. Now I have the Key, my apartment was across the road.
Finally, at last !! I found it! Right, the day is only starting, at this time it was around 18:00...I threw my bags in. I was only in my apartment for about 20 min. My apartment was on a higher level, maybe one level down from the top and for the life of me I couldn't find the number of my apartment. I had to check each door of this whole block to see if my key would fit. i'll leave that here.... :) Door number 9 it was.
I was a mile away from the Gallery. So lets go and find it now, get back and build my piece of artwork so it would be ready for tomorrow.
Walking around New York by yourself, 1st time here and 1st time exhibiting in New York, the buzz was great! Again, a few wrong turns due to my phone not connecting but by taking pictures of certain landmarks off google maps back home helped me to find it! I walked into the Gallery and everyone was preparing for tomorrow night! The Gallery was super busy with artists and everyone looked super busy still organising everything! I had to wait to try and get speaking to someone. I finally did, and turned out that I wasn't on their list to exhibit tomorrow night!! My heart sunk, sorry can you repeat that please but in my good ear? :)
Thankfully my name was on another list and I was all OK'd. So now I know where am going tomorrow morning with the painting, I better get back to build it.
Everything came together thankfully! Nothing had been broken while travelling, the canvas itself was in great condition & most importantly the oil paint wasn't damaged. Game on.
Its Thursday, the morning off the exhibition. I got finished up around 4am, I had done another 24 hr shift since leaving my house but I was wide awake at 08.30. Glenn, New York is just outside...I jumped up and went out for breakfast.
Di Palo's was right on my corner, a proper Italian Deli.
The delivery of my painting to the Gallery wasn't too much fun! I now had it all wrapped up and I need to get the painting into the gallery by midday. I couldn't get a taxi with it nor could I risk someone else handling the painting just in case therefore I had to carry the painting roughly for a mile through the streets of New York and to top it all off, it was raining.
Carrying this painting down these stairs was a mission, again I couldn't help myself from laughing at what I was actually doing, but you got to do what feels right, and that was get the lift but unfortunately there wasn't one. Get on with it. At the bottom of the stairs I had to sit down for 5 min and do some stretches :) then start the journey of walking through the streets carrying this painting then hope it doesn't rain that hard and make sure I don't pull any muscles :)
So cut a long story short, am sure you're glad, I got the painting in and that is where it was going to hang for the month of October. The fun started! I had everything done and now it was time to kick back and relax.
Go and find a good bar, and chill. That I did, I found a bar and the barman who served me was from Belfast, we had a good laugh for an hr or 2 and the Guinness wasn't too bad either.
These are some of my pictures of the exhibition, majority are just taken off my phone so I do apologise for the lack of clarity! The opening was incredible, absolutely amazing and the number of people attended was great! The opening was sponsored by Boston Gin, so I had a few of them and off I went. I talked all night and by the end of the night I had met some amazing people/artists.
My painting was exhibited at the New York Art Centre for the month of October then it was flown to Chicago were I had planned for another exhibition.
The next day was a chill out day, I went to a cafe that sold super duper healthy drinks and I wish I could remember what I had but it was very tasty! Shoes off :)
Press on: Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; Unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education alone will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.