That’s what Dale Schultz did and I love it! He invited people over to celebrate his latest work on Friday (September 12th) between 4 and 8 p.m.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe painted signs in his show called “No Signs Allowed” were not for sale although many have expressed interest in buying them. There were some painted stools for sale but the main event was a celebration to show incredible new work.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe signs are new but look old. They’re painted on plywood with cracks carved in them and then layered with paint until the signs look worn. Dale had some test runs of laying out the signs on the driveway and then when he had an especially pleasing arrangement, hung them on what he calls “old man Shultz’s shed.” I think the building is the original one-hundred-year-old house  on the property at 776 Park Avenue in Nanaimo.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI overhead Dale say he starts each morning with some drawing and one morning he started drawing signs. Those drawings evolved into these painted works hung on the side of the shed which has its own very special patina on the wood.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERADale remembers rustic, hand-painted signs from his childhood. Signs like: “No Camping”, “Open for the Season,” “Bait,” “Cabins for Rent,” Barber,” “Ice,” “Soda Pop.” He said in an interview in the Nanaimo Daily News that “they were generally painted by the local guy who painted houses or boats. He wasn’t a trained sign painter either, but he had brushes and he had paint.”

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERADale Schulz has created and painted theatre sets and props. From the few insulation foam pieces at his art show I could see the magic he can create for the stage.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA“It is something of an homage, not only to childhood trips to lakes all over the interior of B.C., but also to a bygone era in which art was less something sequestered in a gallery and more an everyday, utilitarian occurrence,” Dale said in the interview with Julie Chadwick.

Dale sold his first piece of art at the age of eight for $6. In his teens, he painted Christmas windows in downtown Nanaimo. Today his work is digital and 3D, as well as the creation of some more whimsical work such as the signs paying homage to those sign painters with their “steady hands.”

The sign paintings are a permanent exhibit but it is private property so you should track down Dale Shultz first to ask permission or as he says, it’s going to be: “Get the hell off my lawn.”

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERADale is one of the Dam Poets, that is the Colliery Dam poets and they’ll be reading at Culture Days in Nanaimo on Saturday, September 27th. They’ll be inside at the Harbourfront library atrium. Other poets, including me, will be reading as well, and there will be an open mike. That’s between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. The WordStorm Society will have a booth in Diana Krall Plaza between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.

There may not be cheezies.