Flickr | Courtney
There is an old saying that you shouldn’t meet your heroes as they rarely live up to expectations but for me, meeting my favorite artist Peter Max was a brilliant experience, and I’m so glad that I did. It was 2013 and I had just become a Dad for the first time, my daughter was juts over 1 month old and on one of my days of looking after her I decided to take a walk around a local gallery, what better way to bring up a budding artist that to take her to see paintings worth millions!
I saw what I thought was Peter on the far side of the gallery, and realized that this may very well be the only chance I ever get meet him. I did that double and triple take thing that you do when you meet celebs, and then I bit the bullet.
Your first fear when you meet someone like this is that they will be rude or tell you not to bother them, and I as very keen not to barge in there. Peter was standing looking at some pieces with, what I now know to be one of his agents, and I simply walked up and said ‘Hello Peter, I’m a huge fan’. My expectation was that he’d smile, perhaps say hello to my daughter and then we would move on, but clearly Peter was up for a chat.
All About Me
I had thousands of questions buzzing round my head to ask Peter but very quickly the conversation was almost in reverse, as it was him asking questions about me. Peter would ask about my daughter, about fatherhood, he’d share some stories of his own family and instantly it just felt like a very organic and comfortable chat. Peter and I ended up viewing a few pieces together and his eye for art was simply astonishing.
I realized that I had probably overstayed my welcome and in truth the experience was so amazing that I felt much more comfortable ending it whilst everything was in a good place. Thankfully, almost knowingly, my daughter began to cry at the point, there was a Jackson Pollock which she seemed to take an instant dislike to. I used this opportunity to say goodbye to Peter and to thank him for a wonderful conversation, but not before he impressed me once again. Just as we were about to go he asked me for my Facebook details so that he could check out some of my art, and true enough there was a friend request from him when I got home.
Shortly after accepting that friend request Peter purchased 2 of my sculptures from me, and sent me a lovely message which says what a wonderful experience it had been to meet and wishing me all the best with fatherhood, how thankful I am that I took the bull by the horns and stole a few minutes with my hero, it didn’t disappoint.