William Dalton Manning was a Marlboro smoking, Pabst Blue Ribbon drinking, Poker playing, dog loving southern man. He lived an honest life – you always knew where he stood. Bill loved his family fiercely, especially his beautiful wife, Deb.
They met in the late seventies, both divorced, both looking for their person – and they found it in each other. They were together for almost thirty years, sharing a passion for travel, books, and gambling. One of their greatest passions was family – leisure time was spent with Bill’s parents or Deb’s sisters. Bill spent a great deal of time teaching his nieces and nephews so much – the nuances of drawing, chess, and, of course, poker.
Bill was a man of great talent and patience. One only has to peruse his work to determine that he had a steady and patient disposition. The precise angles and straight lines – all floating and intertwined to create an illusion. An illusion that he had to get out of his head – something he needed to express in his own language. Much of his work expresses his irreverent sense of humor. Much of his work illustrates his love of the female form. Some images are at first glance very abstract, then a second look reveals a face or a profile. So many images from a lifetime love of pen and ink.
After Bill passed in 2006, Deb continued to talk about what to do with his art collection. She had packed it away planning to start a business in her retirement. A business that would allow her to share Bill’s amazing body of work. A business she and Bill had discussed at length – one he encouraged her to pursue for her financial benefit in retirement. A plan she discussed often while sitting through a chemo treatment or riding in the car with one of her caretakers – ways to develop, promote, market a product line. A goal that gave her a sense of hope for the future – helped her fight, at least for a little while.
After Deb passed, William and Stacy were going through Bill’s incredible collection of art. Being a talented designer, he recognized the potential of Bill’s work translating beautifully into hardware, textiles, pillows, etc. They discussed Debbie’s ideas for a business, what she envisioned. One thing led to another, and deb&bill was launched.
So the journey continues...
And we are just getting started!