Phillip Pedro shows city’s beauty with ‘Small-Town Scenes’

Phillip Pedro, 66, an artist and retired security training instructor from Trinidad and Tobago, is this month’s featured BEAL, Bald Eagle Art League, artist has his art on display in the Genetti Taphouse Gallery, 200 W. Fourth St., in his solo show, “Small-Town Scenes,” which will be shown through Feb. 27.

Small-Town Scenes has e-paintings, paintings that were done on computer software, that showcase Pedro’s inspiration found in Williamsport’s beauty, architecture and nature, he said. In addition to drawing and painting, Pedro also sculpts.

“I am aware that similar sights can be found all over the U.S., but I decided why not show the folks of Williamsport the scenes from the town that I like,” Pedro said.

When painting, Pedro will use either a watercolor wash or ink, draws with pencil or charcoal and uses various digital art programs on his computer with a mouse or stylus and tablet. He learned about e-painting through tutorials on YouTube.

Part of Pedro’s process is having no reproductions or copies of his works; there is only one copy of each with a signed certificate of the back. After a piece is sold, or leaves Pedro’s possession, he deletes it from his computer. The only traces left are thumbnail copies as records, which do not enlarge without losing quality, he said.

Pedro grew up during the 1950s in rural Trinidad and Tobago, learning how to draw by looking at comic book characters and learned how to carve by making wood spinning tops and knife handles, he said.

“I had the good fortune to grow up enjoying and admiring the natural beauty of my childhood surroundings,” said Pedro. “While I did not get to the opportunity do arts or crafts at secondary school level because its syllabus concentrated on pure academics, I read about artists and admired the works of the old masters.”

After college, Pedro was a “sculptor making wooden plaques and figurines for Trinidadian artist Carlisle Chang,” he said. His time working with Chang is one of his favorites during his younger years. Pedro left this position for the chance to serve for the Trinidad and Tobago military.

Pedro is a believer in human enlightenment and that artists should utilize today’s technology to their advantage — an opportunity to express beauty in a new medium.

“My subjective concept of beauty has limits when I use a simple brush and paint, I know that,” he said. “However, at this point I am unable to visualize a limit to the imagery that can be created with today’s technology.”

We create technology and keep improving to get what we want, which we also keep improving upon, said Pedro. He used the example of cavemen that drew on walls with soot until they discovered charcoal, colored clay, shadowing and depth.

“Ideas come from the imagination, which I have accepted as limitless,” he said.

Pedro said, “if I can do it, you can, too,” but you need three ingredients:

1. Capacity or Potential — “An artist must possess the means to control the tool. Learning comes with desire.”

2. Desire — “We make the greatest effort to get the things we truly desire.”

3. Opportunity — “When it is available, it will remain only a dream.”

“Individuals can always find something beautiful, comforting and pleasant to see in the most commonplace things around if they take the time to look and that interesting pictures can be made from them,” Pedro said.

Pedro was at the gallery opening on Feb. 2 in the Genetti Taphouse Gallery. Overall, the turnout and reactions were positive for those who attended.

“My most pleasurable moment came when two of our daughters and son-in-law arrived from New York to surprise us with a visit,” he said.

You can see Pedro’s exhibit at the the Genetti Taphouse Gallery, located in the back room, open Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 4:30-11 p.m., Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. – 2 a.m through Feb. 27. The Genetti Taphouse Gallery is supported by thebaldea