BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Most wouldn’t call roofing an art form, but that’s how it all started for Dwight Dreyer.
“I was 49 and I was in business and had a business call to a gentleman in Temple City and we were walking the property and in the back of his garage he had a studio. I said, ‘What do you do?’ He said, ‘I’m a sculptor.’ I said, ‘That’s fascinating, I’d love to do something like that.’ He said, ‘Well, come by on Thursday nights, a few of us get together and sculpt and have beers and talk,'” Dreyer said.
At age 49, Dwight joined that boys’ night doing a little drinking and a little sculpting, and suddenly, he felt his life taking a new shape.
“I was hooked right away,” Dreyer said.
He started in a small studio above his office, sculpting a completely different career path. He felt himself getting more ambitious about his newly discovered talent.
“I got to do this! I have to try to get into a museum show. How silly could I be starting at 49? But when someone tells me, ‘you can’t do that,’ that’s when I want to do it,” Dreyer said.
And he did it. At age 55 he was inducted into the California Art Club. Eight years ago, he finished an impressive studio on his property in Hart Flat.
“I always wanted to build a studio here even before I did art, which is strange. In fact when I was building it, I said to my brother after 10 years of building it, ‘I hope I didn’t do all this for naught.’ But what’s that saying, if you build it, it will come? And it has worked out,” Dreyer said.
Dreyer is now working to build more interest in the arts in Kern. As part of the Tehachapi Valley Recreation and Parks board he’s working to erect sculptures in local parks.
This summer as part of the Tehachapi Arts Commission, he organized the second annual plein air art festival in Tehachapi, bringing award-winning artists from all over the country to Kern County to paint our scenery and show their pieces.
With Kern County as his canvas, Dreyer hopes to paint a more creative community.