“For the same reason one’s nose goes up and down and one’s tongue slips from one side to the other – to draw a truck one could draw on the ground,” says John Krieger, a painter and teacher in Bemidji, Minnesota.
Krieger is one of the artists who’s trying to draw old-fashioned trucks, and this is his way of saying thank you to their creators and their passengers.
The old truck, he says, was not always this way. “Trucks today have two wheels… the modern truck is four, like a motorcycle – big fat, skinny and very high and low,” he says. “Then the early trucks were made out of wood, canvas or plaster. Today we are using metal.”
Krieger is an avid truck enthusiast and a member of the Association of Modern American Artists (AMPAA), which holds its annual convention in Bemidji, Minnesota in May.
“The ’60s were the height of the art,” he says. “People were taking up to four-feet-tall oil paintings with canvases that were so thick they could fit in your hand. These days you see a huge white wall or a wooden wall. There’s nothing to really draw a line that’s old-fashioned anymore. So people are going to a place called Woodinville, Washington, to draw a truck.
“My favorite thing about my art work isn’t that,” he says, “it’s that I get to show other people’s work.”
Krieger says his first truck took four or five hours to make. The artwork he paints on the trucks now takes a couple of hours and he has been using them in galleries and other events around Woodinville, Washington.
“We’ve gotten so many inquiries from people asking where they can buy one,” he says.
The artist has been asked to sell his old trucks – but only if it costs enough to take care of all the little truck needs, too.
“There’s no way in my life that I would sell it,” he says. “I would rather it stay at the same place where it was made – where it used to be – than just put it somewhere else – that’s how sad it is.”
Woodinville, Washington, has an annual art fair where people come to buy vintage trucks and see them up close. A truck museum is at the fair that houses over 450 trucks from all over
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