Sunday, June 17, 2012

Thank You Dad for All the Creativity

My dad (left) Brian McCormick, at his store, The Left of the Bank, in Old Greenwich, CT
with the man he purchased it from (right) Angelo "Scorpy" Rinaldi

I am extremely blessed to have two creative parents who supported and nurtured my own creativity.  Some of my first memories involve doodling in sketchbooks and making things with my mom, and receiving super high-quality art supplies from my dad, who in addition to being the number one proponent of my golf skills, was (and still is) a source of much of my creative confidence.    

Growing up, my dad, Brian McCormick, owned a picture framing store in OldGreenwich, Connecticut, called The Left of the Bank.  As a child in the early 80s, the store was an endless source creativity, curiosity and adventures.  When I was at the store, I would spy on people from under the counters which had peg board fronts.  I would dust, stack and organize the art supplies at the front of the store displayed on practical shelving made up of two-by-fours and concrete blocks.  Behind the counter, I would sit at the register and skewer receipts on an ancient looking nail.  And I would spend countless hours creating odd sculptures out of mat board, colored markers and the endless supply of masking tape that seemed to exist there.  All this would play out while listening to the conversations of the staff and the greetings and requests of customers over a backdrop of classic rock music.  To this day, memories of my dad’s store make it still one of the coolest places I have ever been.

Recently, I was really moved to learn that my dad and his store were also a source of inspiration to others, especially the woman and artist who now owns the business.  On the Facebook group page Friends of Old Greenwich, Marion Stroh Ryan wrote:

When I was little, 7 - 10 years old, I remember going in with 'All my saved allowance'. I picked up a [drawing] pad and special soft pencils and dumped 'My Allowance' on his counter. He [Brian McCormick] took one look at it and told me I had 'Just enough' even with this eraser I would need (that I knew nothing about). This is what inspired me to be in my business!

My dad passed away in the summer of 2001, but his love and encouragement are with me every day.  Thank you, Dad, and Happy Father’s Day.