THE TWINSBURG SUN
By day, Michael Winston teaches physical education at Warrensville Heights High (middle) School. When the last bell rings, however, this Gulf War veteran’s attention turns to the canvas. It’s a career even he admits isn’t quite what he expected. Winston, a Twinsburg resident, makes floral dreamscapes with distinctly modern media. He got into art unintentionally but it’s touched man parts of his life. “What I do is quite differfrom most artists,” Winston said.
I use Magic Markers exclusively.
His path toward an art career has been a meandering one, beginning with a high school interest, which he thought, would lead him to work as an art teacher. Those plans changed following a studio class at Cleveland State University.
I couldn’t create like everyone else. I said, you know what, this is not for me.
I n 1971, he switched his major to physical education and art became a distant memory. “I never painted another picture until 2000. I turned completely away from art. We lived in University Heights for 18 years and I never knew where Cain Parkwas,” he said, the reference being to the Cleveland Heights park’s popular gallery and summer art shows. But old loves die hard. AsRemaining overseas in military duty following the end of Operation Desert Storm, he took to doodling to kill time but quickly stowed the supplies in his duffel bag upon returning home. He started again as a way to kill time during study hall while teaching at Warrensville, where he also served as varsity football coach. “It got to feeling pretty good. I forgot I could do this,” he said.
When the couple built their Twinsburg home in 1999, he became hooked on floral arrangements as subject matter and created several drawings to hang on the walls. Upon taking them to be framed, he was encouraged by a studio employee to enter a local art show. He subsequently earned fourth place in the Russell Art Show.
At one show, someone bought two pictures. Winston said, “The guy wrote a check for $100 and I laughed. I said someone just paid you $100 for something you did watching ‘Matlock’ on TV!”said his art gives him quiet time. I’ll be up until 3 a.m. The house is quiet. My wife’s in bed. My kids are in bed. Nobody’s up but me and the TV. ‘TV Land’ is on. I smoke my pipe. I’m in my own little world.” He said it’s also helped him grow closer to his wife.
I’ll be up until 3 a.m. The house is quiet. My wife’s in bed. My kids are in bed. Nobody’s up but me and the TV. ‘TV Land’ is on. I smoke my pipe. I’m in my own little world.