I've long been a fan of Brian Andreas' work and his StoryPeople creations. With a special occasion on the horizon, I stopped by Agora Arts in downtown Decorah to select a couple of his StoryPeople prints. Agora Arts is a lovely gallery and shop full of wonderful gift ideas for those with all sorts of tastes, but I appreciate their commitment to stocking StoryPeople fare as Andreas' ties to Decorah run deep, while his appeal is national and even international. He created his StoryPeople company in 1994 to ensure that his work could be shared on a global scale, and it has become widely loved because of its deep resonance with that common thread woven through the human spirit.
While the themes in his 50-to-100-word StoryPeople short stories run the gamut from lighthearted to rather serious, they all seem to possess a nugget of wisdom that simply pops out at you and creates a light of understanding as crisp and bright as the broad color palette that Andreas employs in his work. His work appeals to that child in all of us who wants to put color to the page and follow a path that is true to ourselves, even if that sometimes means the world might be a little taken aback at our bold and unconventional presence.
I love those works by Andreas that focus on following one's own barometer of joy rather than being beholden to the world's expectations. Who couldn't use a little more encouragement to follow those dreams that have perhaps lain dormant in the slightly apprehensive heart for far too long? In the "Rules for Living" print I selected, the first rule advises one to say yes to what brings you joy. What a wonderful piece to look at each morning and at the end of each evening, with an illustration to match that can’t help but make you smile and commit to making the quality of your moments just a little brighter and more meaningful. If you prefer the black and white palette, you might enjoy a print like one in the series of "Secrets" that nudges one toward more balanced and braver living.
If you want to explore more of Brian Andreas’ work, I encourage you to stop by Agora Arts. As you peruse his prints, you might find one that resonates well with you or with someone close to you. You could just discover that kernel of inspiration you need to pursue your own boldly creative life.
Photo credit to StoryPeople