The bomb

Dear Artist, On Saturday morning, 10:30 to be exact, I was painting at my easel when a quiet knock came to my upper studio door. It was my friend and neighbor, Dr. Bob Cheyne, who also happens to be our family doctor. As soon as I saw his face I knew something was up. “We got the results of your CAT scan,” he said. I ask him to sit down. Without belabouring our conversation, I can sum up what he said in five words: “Pancreatic cancer — perhaps a year.” I thanked him and mentioned what a tough job he had. “It isn’t always easy,” he said. Carol and our kids David, Sara and James were informed right away. Naturally they are all rallying around and we are off to oncologists and specialists to see if anything might be done. I didn’t have the intention of leaving the planet so soon. Having been through similar situations with several artists who happened to be dear friends, one of my concerns is that substandard Robert Genn paintings don’t get out onto the market. Sara, who immediately flew to Vancouver from New York, is with me this very minute — helping divide a lifetime of work into “destroy,” “sign” and “keep.” Many works of sentimental value are for family and friends, of course. Others will march out of the studio over time. Looking into all storage areas, we find field sketches from practically every province in Canada — the Rockies, the Mackenzie River, Lake of the Woods and other favourite spots. There are oils and acrylics of the USA, Spain, Ireland, France, Argentina and Japan, to name but a few. There are portraits, drawings, lithos, serigraphs, lots of experimental work and one-shot wonders. It’s fun. Sad but fun. For years I’ve been telling artists to do it now, not later. Today we find ourselves doing it now. And what’s going to happen? I’m certainly cancelling speeches and appearances over the next few months. We’ve got too much to do right here. And what about your twice-weekly letters? We’re working on different concepts. Right now you can be assured I’ll write to you as often as I’m able. Best regards, Robert PS: “Life sometimes gives you a second chance.” (Maya Angelou) Esoterica: From the get-go we have been aware of the value of these twice-weekly letters to artists and others. Sara has helped me with many of them. We’ve shared our artistic journey together and have often talked about this day. She’s a professional painter in an entirely different genre. Based in New York, she’s also a sought-after musician and soloist. Wonderfully, she’s also a great writer and right up for the job. One of the ideas we’re tossing around is that she start off by writing once a week. The other letter would be a favourite previous one of mine. If we ran all my previous letters once a week, they would last for 27 years! Finding ourselves at new chapters in our adventure, we sincerely hope we can continue to be of service to you.   From thinking to feeling by Robert Bamford, Waterloo, ON, Canada   Travelled to Europe, going as a physics student attempting to take pictures of the buildings without people in front of them. After exploring many Art Galleries and Cathedrals, I was so touched by the creative energies connecting to a deep place in my psyche that I moved from my focusing on thinking to seeking artistic and psychological experiencing. What struck me the most about art is how it stopped me in my mind and touched me in my soul. Your letters have reminded me of that journey that began so long ago. Although you are sick, you strike me as someone who is nevertheless ‘well.’ Thank you for sharing your journey with us. There are 8 comments for From thinking to feeling by Robert Bamford
From: Anonymous — Oct 30, 2013

I have found your ideas helpful for myself and for my students. I was saddened to read your diagnosis. I hope you experience a miracle and survive for at least 20 more years.

From: Roland Borsato — Oct 30, 2013

Our positive energy is with you Bob. Don’t forget our plans for a mini cruise in the bay with our mutual friend Mr McCallan 25.

From: Bob Ragland — Nov 02, 2013

Geeze! I just got this news. I am sorry, very sorry. i try to live every moment to the fullest. The fall has been spectacular here in Denver,Colorado. I am painting it as fast as I can. Time is fleeting. I never forget that. I am very sad learning about your medical condition. I have been the recipient of solid data from your website. etc. You are in my thoughts and prayers. I am not a big religious guy, but I will send out positive energy to the UNIVERSE in your behalf. Sincerely, Bob Ragland

From: Anonymous — Nov 04, 2013

I hope Robert that you get the balance right between public and personal and that you are not too exhausted by the demands here. Keep going with your painting, reporting on it is secondary. Take care

From: David & Mary Corban — Nov 04, 2013
From: Deborah Boller — Nov 05, 2013

We all love you, Robert, and look forward to many more years of your incredible talent and grace.

From: Joyce — Nov 05, 2013

Robert .. Without knowing, you have touched my life. I am saddened by your news and will send “blue sparkles” to support you on this journey we know as life. Travel safely, whatever your destination may be.

From: RK Montour — Nov 22, 2013

Robert, God bless and keep you and your family throughout the days to come and always. May you and your loved ones be touched by healing hands.

  Gentleman that you are… by Rory Kirby, Victoria, BC, Canada  

“Casa Mexicana”
original painting
by Rory Kirby

For now many years I have been guided by your wisdom and inspiration, your breadth of travel and experience, your courage going to places so daunting and so rewarding. Now suddenly your forward drive has been turned into a retrospective of a life richly lived. And yet, gentleman that you are, you have found the strength to bring focus to your situation and to respond with the characteristics you have written about to guide us so well. Your decision to replay your letters for the next 27 years means that I shall be stimulated even as I reach 112 years old. This legacy and the determination to leave only the best of your life-long work is admirable and I remain even more in awe. There are 5 comments for Gentleman that you are… by Rory Kirby
From: Ron Ruble — Oct 29, 2013

Bravo!!! and ditto from here. There is no better life than to share. Robert, you have done more than your part. Best wishes…….

From: martha keim-st. louis — Oct 29, 2013

your words struck me hard. cancer has visited me too. Words are not enough. Replays for the next 27 years would outlive me too. thank you martha keim-st. louis

From: Anonymous — Oct 31, 2013

I have read your letters for years and you have helped me, encouraged me and kept me connected to my art when I have felt alone in my struggles. Please know that you are not alone as you journey forward. Prayers for your peace and strength and for your family, too. Thank you for all you have shared.

From: Patricia Anderson — Nov 01, 2013

I’m a so so art quilter, trying out beading on fabric, struggling to feel anything I do is worthwhile and yet when I read your letters, and hear your response to the “bomb” I realize that I’m just one of millions. You have given me inspiration for living well. and I can neither draw or paint but your letters always give hope.

From: Heidi Smith — Nov 01, 2013

I, too, shall not outlive your words of wisdom, encouragement and beautiful art unless I reach 108. You have given so much to so many, Robert, and again, you in your gentlemanly fashion sharing with us all what we shall face one day. You are in my thoughts and prayers daily. God bless you and your family and thank you ever so much for all you have contributed to the art world – it is a much better place for it.

  Never written back before by Cherie Colaw, Tempe, AZ, USA  

“What’s In a Name”
oil on canvas, 12 x 16 inches
by Cherie Colaw

Robert, and Sara, You are in my heart and my prayers. Know that, even to those of us that have never written back to you before, you give a grand gift. I welcome and support Sara, a recommendation from you is all that I need. Go heal, and we’ll look forward to celebrating the day you come back to us. Thank you for that little bit of Christmas that you send with every email. You can’t possibly know how much your kind words and inspiration mean to those of us when we are stuck or lost.     There is 1 comment for Never written back before by Cherie Colaw
From: Ginger B — Oct 29, 2013

I agree with all this person said. I am so sorry about your diagnosis and am so grateful for all you’ve done. Ginger B , phoenix

  Rooting for you by Susan Levi-Goerlich, Columbia, MD, USA  

“Field of Color”
fiber painting, 10 x 24 inches
by Susan Levi-Goerlich

You don’t know me of course. I’m one of the many thousands of email addresses to whom your bi-weekly musings are sent. But somehow, when I read your last posting, I felt like a friend, who has shared valuable insights and deep thoughts and provided much inspiration and influence, was now facing a huge challenge. Please know that you have touched many, many people and we are ALL rooting for you. There is 1 comment for Rooting for you by Susan Levi-Goerlich
From: Anonymous — Nov 26, 2013

Blessings on you, your loved ones and your medical team. I hope you feel the embrace and love from all your friends and fans.

  Hang in by Richard and Barbara Townsendington, ON, Canada   My wife and I are profoundly disappointed with your news. She’s the watercolorist of the family, and steadily she has drawn true insights from your rich experience and observations. And I’m the guy with the computer who regularly prints off and first-reads your acute commentaries; steadily too for several years now, I too have appreciated your cheer, wisdom, and encouragement for her. Something more has come through your incredibly productive flow of warm and caring newsletters — a deep sense about how artists and non-artists alike might well conduct their lives. Since we’ve truly befriended others by passing on your email address, regularly we remark to each other here in town about how we have greatly profited from and so relished your letters. Thing is, over several years now, you’ve become a mentor we look forward to catching up with. Very humane and giving. Almost sorta like you being a member of our extended family. So please please, Mr. Genn, hang in. And know that you are, and have been, greatly valued. There are 2 comments for Hang in by Richard and Barbara Townsend
From: Nan Fiegl — Oct 29, 2013

Amen, Amen, Amen! All of us out here cherish you like a best friend, and thank you for all you’ve given — (for at least twenty years in my case). And Know that each future letter that comes now will prompt new thanks, and thoughts, and prayers back to you.

From: Jane Yelliott — Nov 01, 2013

The previous response seems to say it all so eloquently. Miracles do happen and I am wishing for one in your case. Your letters have meant so much to me.

  Old friend by Nyla Witmore, Boulder, CO, USA  

“Venetian Radiance Web”
oil on canvas, 24 x 30 inches
by Nyla Witmore

Robert, I know firsthand how giving you are… when around 10 years ago I admired a French themed sketchbook you spoke about, the creation of a deceased artist who did sketches of Brittany or Normandy. I asked where to find a copy. YOU generously shared your copy, mailing it to the USA, just so I could see and hold it. I then returned it to you. (It was so profound a book for me as well… difficult to return… but I have never forgotten how much it meant to me.       More good days by Tessa Stanley, Edmonton, AB, Canada  

oil painting
by Tessa Stanley

This morning’s letter was a shock and I read it just before I was heading out the door with my Dad to his oncologist appointment — he also has pancreatic cancer. He just completed his first round of chemo and had a good night’s sleep; the sun is shining here and it hasn’t snowed yet, so it is a good day! I have been struggling for about a year and a half now with getting my paintbrushes out again (coincidentally I quit when I had my own scare, that thankfully turned out to be benign). I know how precious life and time is and your urging to do it now, not later, rings so true. I just want to thank you for all your wise, mostly inspiring, sometimes aggravating words about art, and for your beautiful paintings. We purchased one of your works, Tsimshian High, after we returned from a beautiful vacation in Haida Gwaii. Your painting reminds us every day of one of our favourite family holidays and how special that time was. I TRULY hope and pray that you will be able to enjoy every day and that you will have many, many more good days. Thank you for being a great inspiration and an amazing Canadian artist.   Have taken your letters for granted by Christine Essler, New York, NY, USA  

Gatsby, Chelsea, Daisy

Today, when I took a glance at my Blackberry (which I try not to look at until I am actually on my way to work), I thought “The bomb” would be about a lousy painting. I sat on the F train heading to lower Manhattan, tears streaming down my face. I have not cried like that even for a dear friend of 28 years when I learned she had breast cancer. I don’t want you to leave the earth, and I know thousands of others feel the same right now. I am not religious, and yet I am praying… praying for a medical quirk. Stay strong, please… you and your loving family. You have another, enormous family out there who loves you. I don’t want to show a painting, so I will attach a picture of my beloved beasts who bring me peace in heart wrenching times. There is 1 comment for Have taken your letters for granted by Christine Essler
From: Kathy Z — Oct 30, 2013

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

  The mountaintop by Connie Cuthbertson, Fort Frances, ON, Canada  

“Bathed in Light”
watercolor painting, 22 x 30 inches
by Connie Cuthbertson

Hi Bob, A few things. A dear friend living near to the centre of the universe, Toronto, has been diagnosed with the same animal. She’s also advanced as the cancer has spread to her pancreas and other organs. She was given 4 – 6 months but has decided to stick around for the fun of it. The day she found out her news was now almost 1 1/2 years ago and she’s still going strong. I visit with her whenever I’m down that way; she is simply a breath of fresh air, smiling, laughing and sharing and living the day more fully now than ever before. I just wanted you to know that it doesn’t really matter, in the grand scheme of things… knowing or not knowing. Nobody “normal” really knows either. I have found it to be a gift of sorts once I got over the initial, well, shock. As you already know, living the day to the best possible level is what it’s all about. I see that in your life, your philosophy and your work. You already have it figured out.

Lawren Harris

I wonder sometimes if my life would be any different now since my cancer adventure. Yes and no. In the yes column are things like deeper connections with family and friends, fine tuning priorities, heightened awareness of the world around me… the light has never been more beautiful or powerful, and then of course there is the cabin!!!! I can’t wait to move there when the ice goes out! Spending my life insurance $ before I kick the bucket really is where it’s all at! :) I should be able to enjoy it too!! In the no column… well, it’s funny because I thought I was living in the moment before my cancer adventure but I really didn’t have a clue. So I guess everything has changed in some way… in a good way. Well, I still have to clean the toilet and take out the garbage so I guess that hasn’t changed… :) The mountaintop. Magical doesn’t begin to describe as you well know.

“Mount Lefroy” 1930″
oil painting
by Lawren Harris

Since returning to lower ground these past couple of months, I find myself up there on the mountain again and again in my dreams, both sleeping and awake. As you know, soon after my return home I was headed out to the other side of the great and wondrous pond. Whilst flying over the ocean my mind and spirit were still in the Bugaboos. I sketched only pictures of my mountain adventure for the first few days in Greece. I think some thought it strange… but, then again, they’ve never experienced the magic of that very special place. Just so you know, you are my Lawren Harris and have been for years. I loved hearing the story of how you two met and how you got to know him. Thank you for sharing that with us. I feel we’ve known each other for years through your letters. Just in case you haven’t heard this before, you are one unique individual and have such talent as you are able to share your work, life and thoughts in ways no other artist has ever done. Watching you paint, hearing your thoughts as you moved your brush and seeing the canvas transformed into art was pure poetry. I am so very honoured I was able to be a part of this… even if it was a year later than originally planned. :) I would like to offer up a little advice if I may. Take time for you everyday to write, paint or meditate or better yet, go for a walk in the wilds. It really helps me to focus outside of my head to gain clear perspective. My days too are numbered and my cancer, I’m told by the great and knowledgeable doctors, will return… I just don’t know when. But for now (like on the mountaintop when I thought it had) I have a day to live. Now comes the real challenge… what will we do with this day we have been given… I already know the answer for me. There is a half completed Bugaboo calling from my easel. Love, Connie p.s. I too did the painting shuffle when I first heard my news. Signed some, completed some and destroyed others. It felt great and empowering.   What’s with that? by Mark Nordell, Deerwood, MN, USA   Good Morning From Minnesota, It’s 70 in this lake cabin and 30 degrees outside. The heat comes from the wood, this newly retired 67 year old United Methodist Clergy harvested in preparation for winter. It’s before 7 AM on a Friday, 131025. Art, I love and crave. My own painting is negligible and terribly inconsistent. I only know you through your bi-weekly letter that I have read now fairly consistently for over a decade. For that I thank you… Lately, I’ve been thinking about double binds. The contradiction this morning has to do with your announcement. The bind is this: Your announcement hit me with a force that surprises me. This rather hard bitten, “religious” who has buried dozens of cancer victims, caring decently for them and their families, finds himself rather blown away by your announcement. What’s with that!!! Why do I continue to read your writings? Usually I stop subscribing to someone’s work after a while for this reason or that. How come I have continued to read you? Primarily because your voice about art makes sense with little pretension. Usually, you express yourself with intention, without taking yourself too seriously. Your description of that “zone,” this experience, a traditional frustration or unique insight, has been refreshing to me and brought a particular kind of meaning into my life. I am grateful for your effort, and the consistent creativity in your reflective writing. There is a special sense of authenticity within your public voice that seems to me to be rare amongst public people. I appreciate it.

Richard Bresnahan, Artist-in-Residence, St John’s University

Do I know your paintings well enough to comment? Not really. What I have seen, online, I enjoy. However it is not the painter who effects me as much as the person that Robert Genn releases into his writing. I don’t pray much these days in terms of the traditional ways of normal protestant piety. This morning, though, out of a more yogic tradition, I set the morning’s intention to surround you, lighting a candle for you as a focus of my morning “practices” as I write this note before attending to the day. If I were to wish for something, it would be a long conversation. Not so much between you and me, but between yourself and Richard Bresnahan, Artist-in-Residence. Mr. Bresnahan is just now taking some 12,000 pieces out of a very successful firing in the largest wood kiln in North America. Both of you are superb artists, public figures with a following, and men of age whose artistic production is high quality and quite vast, yet both of you still find ways to be approachable.

Bresnahan teapot

I would pour tea, offer refreshments and listen to the conversation. I would find ways to have input into the conversation concerning the spiritual dimension of art, living and being, but mainly I would want to be quiet and unobtrusive. Nevertheless, my first reaction to your announcement was an out loud, verbal, “O Shit!” Now I will settle down and try to listen for your “voice.” Please continue to write even as you let Sara’s voice increase. I look forward to listening…  

Archived Comments

Enjoy the past comments below for The bomb

From: Karen Vande Vyvere — Oct 24, 2013

Robert – sending you the largest kind of gratitude; sending you and your family love.

From: Mike Barr — Oct 24, 2013

Robert – thousands around the world that are a part of your greater Painters Keys family are feeling the shock wave. We all thank you for sharing your hard-earned wisdom and even sharing this intimate news. You have been a blessing to many thousands of your followers and will be for many many years to come. Twice a week we look for that email! We all wish for some good news on your well-being.

From: Brenda Behr — Oct 24, 2013

I am heartsick. I so wanted to believe you were writing about someone else. Let us know what we can do for you. Please. With love, gratitude,and admiration, Brenda Behr

From: Desiree Bond — Oct 24, 2013

I am so sorry to hear this news, please know my thoughts are with you. I feel just awful, I wish I had some thing to offer.

From: Penelope Rothfield — Oct 24, 2013

Dear Robert, I am truly very sorry to hear this sad news. I wish you only the very best of everything always.

From: Warrior — Oct 24, 2013

Your best art was your life. The years gave you a canvas and you took your Creator-endowed gifts and created a Masterpiece. You did in your life what will live forever. Truly. Thank you for sharing it with others.

From: Ruth Armitage — Oct 24, 2013

Sending wishes for a cure, peace and joy in the present days. Thanks for the many hours of virtual camaraderie.

From: Sandi Lear — Oct 24, 2013

Dear Robert, firstly let me offer my thanks for your bravery in sharing such news, and that of your family. To see such things in print is to bring a realisation on truth and will help you and your family through this time. I have not been a “visible” contributor to your epistles, but please allow me to thank you for your wisdom and insights, they lighten my day, brighten my colours, give value to my tones, and provide the occasional chuckle. Know that people the world over, including those of us from down under, are sending you strength, peace and love…..and our deepest thanks for having made a difference.

From: Jeanette Runions — Oct 24, 2013

You have gifted me with your wisdom and insights for which I am forever grateful. Have hope, have strength and believe. Trust in those you love and have faith in the mysteries of life that surround you. I am a cancer survivor – believe that you can be too.

From: Dorothy Woolbright, Oklahoma City, OK — Oct 24, 2013

Dear Robert…Your newsletters have become a trusted friend that I enjoyed visiting twice a week! I often mention your topic or quote something that you said, whether it is art-related or philosophical in nature, to my other art friends. And I have recommended your website and blog many times to other artists. In other words, this is an important cyber-friendship that I cherish. Thank you for your gifts and the time spent bringing art lovers together. I am saddened that you had to hear the “bomb” and it feels like a personal loss to me as well. I offer loving thoughts to you and your family and friends.

From: Angelika La Haise — Oct 24, 2013

Robert, like a faithful friend over the last few years I received your e-mails 2x weekly in my inbox, marvelling at your insight and wisdom and the generosity of sharing it with all us creative ones.I have learned much from these and have been encouraged more than you can imagine. So I thank you for your transparency sharing with us such impacting news. Knowing you will meet this coming challenge with the same courage and creative attack as you have demonstrated to us about art. I will be praying for our heavenly Fathers Love to be shown to you every minute of each day as you walk through this season of your life. Sending to you all heavens blessings, grace and healing anointing ,in Jesus name.

From: Glenn Doughty — Oct 24, 2013

Robert, be assured my prayers are for you as you struggle with this dreadful disease. I felt so shocked and sad for you.

From: Jody Kim — Oct 24, 2013

Hi Robert, I just got your email. I’m so sorry about the doctor’s news. The mind has a virtually unlimited ability to create outcomes. If you are not ready to go, do not make the assumption that he is correct about when you are to depart. You are much more powerful than you know. Believe it. Sincerely, Jody Kim

From: Tracy Adams — Oct 24, 2013
From: Tanis Alexis Laird — Oct 24, 2013

you have had a profound impact on mine and so many others’ artistic lives. Sending you healing light, and all my best wishes for health. You are a gift to artists. xo

From: Carol Edan — Oct 24, 2013

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family!!!

From: iskra — Oct 24, 2013

Oh I am stunned, and very very saddened by this news. You are for me an indomitable spirit and an endless source of humor and encouragement. This community that you have created is an irreplaceable treasure for which I will always be grateful. I will send much love in your direction and hope that the “year” might by some miracle become instead a long and continued life in good health.

From: Sherry Killam — Oct 24, 2013

I just discovered you 5 weeks ago, and have saved your letters in a folder. Ten letters, and I find myself weeping at this news. Sending you and yours much love, strength, clear light and truth to help you through the challenges. Thank you for your generous spirit.

From: Brenda Lowery — Oct 24, 2013

I am shocked and saddened to read this letter. You have been and will always be an inspiration to many of us. Sending all good karma your way.

From: Terri Steiner — Oct 24, 2013

Bless you, Robert. You make a huge difference in mine and so many peoples lives. Continue to do what you love best, and surround yourself with love, beauty and loved ones. You’ve been in my mailbox since the last century and feel like family. Thank you. Your’s is a life well lived. Sending you love and hugs.

From: Kali Desautels — Oct 24, 2013

Sending you thoughts of health and peace as you move forward.

From: Carol Kairis — Oct 24, 2013

Robert, the blessings within your generous giving enriches us all within the art community. Sara is such a fortunate young lady to have had such a devoted “dad” recognizing from her youth the direction within her heart (towards art) to now hold such deserving peaceful confidence in her is wonderful…and we do as well. The most encouraging words which have ever spoken to my heart & it is my prayer through all lives trials is found at Isaiah 41:10. May its comfort rest with you, as well as your family. Remember too, Robert…”Love hopes all things”.

From: Margaret Stermer-Cox — Oct 24, 2013

I am sorry to hear about your news. I send you and your family my warmest regards. You have been most generous to share your thoughts and beliefs; thank you.

From: Mary Aslin — Oct 24, 2013

Dear Robert, you have been with all of us in our art journeys every step of the way and will continue to do so. My heart and prayers are with you and your family every moment.

From: paul bennett — Oct 24, 2013

Sometimes pancreatic cancer goes into automatic remission and I earnestly hope this happens for you. A million thanks for all your wise advice over the years.

From: Carole Raschella — Oct 24, 2013

One of my dearest friends has survived two bouts of cancer, both extremely serious, and both with a really lousy prognosis. He’s still here, with no evidence of cancer. Doctors are not always right. Sometimes the best cure is attitude and you are overflowing with that and so much more.

From: Fran — Oct 24, 2013

I have only discovered your newsletter in the past couple months and have enjoyed it tremendously. I too was hoping you were talking about someone else and am truly stunned. Thank you for enhancing my life with your profound insights and for sharing so many aspects of your journey, including this one. Prayers and well wishes to you and your family.

From: Lorraine Day — Oct 24, 2013

Robert – I keep re-reading the first five paragraphs of your letter, looking for the word I missed that signaled that what I was reading was really only the start of a story. I am so, so saddened for you and your family for this distressing turn in your lives. For every person who has emailed you and shared their thoughts and their art with you, there are thousands of silent folks like me who simply see your name pop up in our email and sit back with a glass of wine to enjoy a half hour – or more! – in the company of a sympathetic, wise, and sometimes quirky friend. Thank you for letting us know what is happening to you, and to Sara for helping to keep us all connected in the weeks and months to come. You have given more than you can possibly know to all of us for whom making art is a form of prayer – I wish there was some way we could give back. If there is such a thing as White Light, and if it can help, believe that I am sending as much of it as I can.

From: Shane Conant — Oct 24, 2013

True friends are hard to lose, your letters are more than inspiration as they have spoken many kindnesses to me as am sure is true of all of your readers. Can’t say thanks enough for your thoughtfulness in sharing even today’s bad news.

From: m.a.tateishi — Oct 24, 2013

All good wishes to you, and my hopes for the best outcome. I hope that from now on, you can spend your time doing everything you enjoy: being with family and creating art. Thank you for all that you’ve done for artists everywhere.

From: Roma — Oct 24, 2013

Such a shock to read your letter this morning and I am sending healing thoughts and prayers to you and your family. Thank you for being you and all that you share so generously.

From: Rubina Rajan — Oct 24, 2013

It was so great to listen to you at the Ferry Building and address “clientosis”. Thanks very much for helping the artist community at large. I hope you will look into alternative medicine which so many people have used to heal. Wishing you the very best.

From: Anette power — Oct 24, 2013

Just read those 5 words and was stunned. Robert, know that there are so many of us thinking of you and your family, hoping for the best, wishing you all the strength and support possible for this challenging journey and grateful as always for the wise words you’re sharing with us even today!

From: Marsha Gilliam — Oct 24, 2013

Oh, Robert, this must have been the hardest post you have ever written, as it is the hardest one for us all to hear. Just remember, more and more people are getting through this kind of illness. Support your body with the things it needs to fight back–fresh organic vegetables and a little fruit, alkalinity, enzymes and lots of oxygen; and deprive the dis-ease of the things it likes–sugar, acidity, lack of enzymes, and lack of oxygen. You are so very much in our thoughts and hearts.

From: Prabha Narayanan — Oct 24, 2013

Thank you Robert for your paintings and kind writing. A few of us artists who share your thoughtful letters in this side of the globe pray for recovery.

From: Suszanne Bernat Droney — Oct 24, 2013

Dear Robert….the “Bomb” that has been dropped on you has been dropped upon the entire globe. It is a devastating blast to those of us who have been enriched by your wisdom, thought-provoking insights, good humor and charm that you so aptly convey through your Twice-Weekly Letters. Thank you for sharing your incredibly creative you with all of us. My positive thoughts are with you….with respect and sincere admiration.

From: paul — Oct 24, 2013

I wait for your letters each week and read them over and over again. They’re like letters from a long lost relative. Our prayers are with you Mr Genn. Maybe God needs an artist up there, who knows?

From: Hanneke Corbet — Oct 24, 2013

Robert, We don’t know each other, but I am familiar with your work, as I am a volunteer in the Ferry Building. I admire your frankness and courage to tell us about your condition. I wish you well and more courage to go through this and I keep you in my thoughts…..

From: Jeri Lynn Ing — Oct 24, 2013

My prayers are with you and your family. You are a gift to all who know you. The mentoring you give will live on in your art and letters for many years to come. I hope your artwork, old and new, adds comfort to you as you go along this new path.

From: Liz Reday — Oct 24, 2013

I have the feeling that thousands of artists all over the world are thinking about you and beaming out their strength and hope and prayers for your health. Be well. One day at a time. Now I too will clean out the sub-standard work from the studio.

From: Margaret Stermer-Cox — Oct 24, 2013

Dear Mr. Genn, I send you and your family my regards. I’m sorry to hear about your cancer. I hope for the best. I enjoy the gift of your letters. Thank you for sharing so much of yourself.

From: Daggi Wallace — Oct 24, 2013

I’m so very sorry that you had such devastating news! While your letters are an inspiration and always a joy to see in my inbox, you have certainly given us plenty of them over the years so you can now focus on your health and family. My heart goes out to you and you and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers.

From: robin Depolo — Oct 24, 2013

I read this with tears in my eyes. I care much, Robert, and will hold you in my heart. Peace and light dear man.

From: Roberta — Oct 24, 2013

I am so sorry. My wish is for you to beat the prognosis. Your generosity has guided countless people. May that energy return to you in spades to help you through this battle. Never give up.

From: Margo Carr — Oct 24, 2013

I am so sorry, and just devastated for you and your family. You have become a favored guest and mentor for …I can’t even recall how many years. Best of luck in how this all pans out for you.

From: Beth M — Oct 24, 2013

I’m so sorry to hear this news. I started reading this thinking that is surely had a different ending to the story, but sadly it is not. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.

From: Ola — Oct 24, 2013

This made me so sad. I have only received your newsletter for some months now, but you already feel like a wise, dear friend. I hope you find strength around you. Best well wishes from Sweden.

From: Trish Meyer — Oct 24, 2013

I’ve enjoyed your newsletter for many years now and I am so, so very sorry to read your news today. Being Irish, words don’t usually fail me, but all I can say now is that I am so very sorry for your troubles… Take care of yourself.

From: Karin Richter — Oct 24, 2013

Dear Robert, I don’t know what to say except that we all love you and you’ll be in our thoughts. My very best wishes for a miracle! Karin

From: J. Mulnix — Oct 24, 2013

I have been receiving and reading your letters for quite awhile. They have had tremendous impact on my life and have found influence in the most subtle of ways. I am saddened at your news. I am also very blessed to feel a part of your extended family. God Bless.

From: Terry Stanley — Oct 24, 2013

Thanks to the internet, you have touched thousands more people than was possible for your predecessors. Luckily for us, what you have to say is valuable and relevant. I am grateful for the opportunity to tell you how much your lessons and observations have meant to me. I promise you that I will continue to pass along that which I learn from you to my own students. You are a world treasure, dear sir and and you when your journey is over, you will know that you truly leave a legacy that assures your name will be known to countless artists, present and future. My prayers and best wishes to you and your family.

From: Susan Thacker — Oct 24, 2013
From: JUDITH GRIFFITHS — Oct 24, 2013

There are no words. I only hope that you find some kind of treatment that will work for you. May God bless you and yours!!!!!!

From: Jeanne Marklin — Oct 24, 2013

I’m so sorry to read this shocking news. I hope that there is a treatment protocol to extend your life. Please continue to write and let us know how you are doing.

From: pilan — Oct 24, 2013

Robert, I don’t know what to say except fight like hell and never stop. I have enjoyed your blog and newsletters for years and I look forward to more of them. *hugs* & there will be lots of prayers for you

From: Sylvia Oates — Oct 24, 2013

I am so devastated by this news. While I rarely comment, I am a faithful reader and am well aware of what a wonderful service these letters are and what a dedicated effort you have made to keep the spirit of art alive. I will be praying for you and meditating on your good health and comfort.

From: Kathryn Hartwig — Oct 24, 2013

Dear Robert, although I don’t paint now, I save your letters, and read them when I have time to savor them. This one, however, I’m glad I read, as soon as I saw it. Now, I know why. We will be praying for you and your family, and I hope to start painting again, soon. You are an inspiration. God bless you and your family. Kathy Hartwig

From: Geeta — Oct 24, 2013

Dear Robert, I am really sorry to hear such news. Thank you for your wisdom, sincerity, and generosity. You are a trailblazer for artists all over the world. I do believe ‘life sometimes gives a second chance’. Please keep your courage high and know you are in the thoughts of all the artists who receive your letters. All positive thoughts to you and your family.

From: karen ferry — Oct 24, 2013

Robert, I have received your newsletters for so long I feel like I kind of know you and want to say how sorry I am to hear of your diagnosis. It’s good that you are taking care of business but remember to continue to enjoy every moment that you are able. We never know when it is our time, we never know when science will discover another cure. I have metastatic breast cancer, am lucky to still be here and although there are ups and downs I never forget one day what a gift our live’s are. Just want you to know if you do decide to discontinue writing your letters you will be missed, I wish you and your family well.

From: jesi Barron — Oct 24, 2013

Dear Robert , just read the news . I am in shock . Don’t know what to say . I am thinking about you and your family . So much to do . Do hope something can be done ……….love jesi Barron………….

From: Debra Bretton Robinson — Oct 24, 2013
From: Edith Warner — Oct 24, 2013

The bomb indeed! We artists aren’t ready to see you go either. Fight the good fight Robert and know that many are pulling for you. Thank you for all the insight and advice you have given to myself and so many artists over the years. Now I will indeed ‘go to my room’ and I shall not forget your words.

From: Cynthia Brucksch — Oct 24, 2013

Your weekly shared views are valued living testimonies to me as an artist. Inspirational and very often pertinent at the time. I am saddened to know that your health has jeopardized and changed your life’s path. My sincere wishes for renewed days ahead and comfort in your efforts. As artists, we each are a process, and every step is a journey. And that journey has more steps to go.

From: ReneW — Oct 24, 2013

So Sorry for you and your family. I know words cannot do justice to your plight. All of us on this blog truly appreciate what you have brought to the art community and into our lives. We all pray for you and your family. You have a huge hurdle ahead of you so don’t worry about this website and your letters to us, we understand.

From: Laurel R — Oct 24, 2013
From: Kit Lang — Oct 24, 2013

Dear Robert, I was so very sorry to read about your diagnosis. I actually cried although not only have we never met, I’ve never even commented on your blog before! Too bad they can’t just remove your pancreas and let you be diabetic! I have had cancer (twice) myself, the last time they gave me “11 months” – it’s 17 years later and I’m still going strong, so never give up hope. While you’re working on that, I’ll look forward to getting to know Sara, re-reading your past gems and new material when you have time. Good luck and heartfelt best wishes.

From: Susan Avishai — Oct 24, 2013

We are all devastated by this news, Robert. You have grown to be an essential part of our week, our education, our courage to continue. I hope we can give back some of it now to you.

From: Martha Bickley — Oct 24, 2013

I love your letters so much; they and your art inspire me. I am sad to know you aren’t well, and I wish you the best! I look forward to reading Sara’s letters, and many more of yours.

From: Angela St Jean — Oct 24, 2013

Dear Bob, my thoughts are with you. Thank you so much for what you do for us all, my warmest wishes and greatest hopes that you can kick cancer’s ass.

From: Ann Osgood — Oct 24, 2013

I am shocked to learn this news. My heart goes out to you and your family. So many of us have been touched by you we feel we know you and care for you. Please know we are thinking of you. In deed your advice to find our creative moments in each day is even more profound.

From: Blake Ovard — Oct 24, 2013

Robert, you are in my prayers!

From: Silvia Forrest — Oct 24, 2013

Dear Robert,it is with deep sadness that I just read your latest newsletter. I enjoy immensely your bi-weekly exploration of so many interesting and sometimes controversial subjects as well as your paintings. I sincerely hope that life gives you a second chance.

From: Judy — Oct 24, 2013

Robert, Thank you for your “twice-weekly letters”. They have been as amazing as your artwork. Sending love and healing thoughts to you….

From: Judy Brown — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, So sorry to hear this news. You and your family will be in my prayers. Don’t give up, our God is a God of miracles. : ) Judy

From: Lesley Todd — Oct 25, 2013

Such sad news to wake up to, I am truly heart-feltedly sorry to hear. I’ve never left a comment before in the 10 years I’ve been reading your letters and now I wish I had. I’ve always loved reading your words and often wondered how you manage to think of so many things to write about! Wishing courage, strength and happiness to you and your family.

From: Owen Garratt — Oct 25, 2013

Oh Robert…I’m so sorry this has happened to you. I wish I had something, anything, that would be of use…I can’t even find good words. God bless you, and thanks for all of the wonderful advice and stories you’ve shared with us over the years; you’ve been a tremendous help and inspiration to SO many of us…

From: Lucy Clark — Oct 25, 2013

Although I am a 3-D artist, I look forward to your insights and words of wisdom regarding the wonderful world of painting and life in general. You have left a mark on this world and made a difference in my life. I can only hope that whatever time any of us have left that we face it with as much grace and honesty as you have shown. Deep bow of gratitude to you.

From: Wendie Thompson — Oct 25, 2013

I am a prayer Robert and I am praying for you!

From: Robert Fuschini — Oct 25, 2013

Wellness to you and Family !/ ….friend.

From: Cathyann Burgess — Oct 25, 2013

Prayers go out to you and hope that you get more time with your family, Mr. Genn. You have been an inspiration and am sure you will continue to be. Peace to you.

From: Penny Otwell — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, you are loved by many, admired, revered, and I honor you in this next chapter of your life. Know that many of us keep you close in our through our art. You have been my mentor and kept me going on when I might have quit. I wish you and your family the best and please know you are in my thoughts. Penny Otwell

From: Colleen DalCanton — Oct 25, 2013

It was very disheartening to hear your news. Many prayers sent your way for you and your family.

From: Rose Ann Vita — Oct 25, 2013

Hello Robert, I just started following you and am so inspired. I was hoping there would be another Hollyhock and was looking forward to driving across the country to be there with you. I am so sorry to hear about your turnaround. My thoughts and prayers are being sent to you and your family and friends. Thanks for the beauty nod vision and inspiration that you have shared with me and others through the internet. Rose Ann Vita Mississauga, Ontario

From: Katelyn Alain — Oct 25, 2013

I am so sorry to hear this. I’m sure you will be receiving so much mail that says the same. You’ve changed so many lives and inspired so many people as I’m sure you know. It’s immeasurable. Best of luck to you and your family in light of this difficult news.

From: Jocelyn T. Bichard — Oct 25, 2013
From: Laura — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, Normally, in the interest if taming the inbox, your missives have gone to my art folder where I’d look for inspiration “later”, you know, when I had time… For some reason this one didn’t, and when I looked at the inbox, there it was. I’m sorry for your physical troubles, but have the sense that the strength that has given you the courage of your convictions and the grace that has allowed you to share them so generously, will help you now. I wish you and your family good things and thank you for sharing your thoughts over the years – they will continue to inspire. In spirit, Laura

From: Wes Giesbrecht — Oct 25, 2013


From: Janet Butler — Oct 25, 2013

What terrible news – but God bless and keep you and hopefully grant you many more years to do your beautiful paintings in.

From: Sandhya Manne — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, I am shocked….sorry you have to go through this…Sending healing energies and prayers…. Sandhya

From: Bryan Dunleavy — Oct 25, 2013

So sorry to read this news this morning. You have made, and continue to make, an enormous contribution to art. My thoughts are with you and your family as you tackle the difficult time ahead. My very best wishes and thanks to you.

From: Judy Roberto — Oct 25, 2013

From a survivor: 1. Believe in miracles. 2. Embrace the filter of your “new vision”. Your work will change. 3. Create a new 5 year plan. Begin a challenging project to fill it. Work, expecting to be there to see it completed. 4. Every day here, for each one of us, is a miracle. Some who are painfully reacting to this news, will not outlive you. 5. On the worst days and the best days, wrap yourself in the love and prayers we all send for your healing, comfort and peace.

From: Neil Jones — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, I can only say thankyou and may the Gods smile on you You have been an insperation to us all…..My thoughts are with you

From: Jean McLaren — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, I am so sorry to hear your sad news. May you rest easy and in peace with your friends and family. You have given us so much to think about. We will long remember you….what is rememberd lives…Jean

From: Liz King — Oct 25, 2013

I am so sorry to hear your news, this can’t have been the easiest of letters to write. One good thing is that you have people by the thousands thinking of you. I think they are both good ideas (old letters, and Sara writing), but only if it is good for you, this is the one time in life you have the right to be selfish. Wishing you and your family strength, we are all thinking of you.

From: Kathy Young — Oct 25, 2013

My prayers are with you during your treatment.

From: Gentlehawk — Oct 25, 2013

Remember, Robert, you’re not leaving, you’re just going to be “offstage” for awhile until you return to continue in the adventure of art… ya….hugs!

From: Nanch E. — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, I’ve just been there…where you are. You will make it through, one way or another. We, who have had or do have, will come to our own acceptance of what we face. Our painting/paintings are our gifts to life and our luxury of enjoying them. Each day is the appreciation of that day and the next to come. Good luck and much love!

From: gentlehawk — Oct 25, 2013

…..and also, a label given by the medical profession is not set in stone……anything can be reversed or negated….it can!

From: Sally Breen — Oct 25, 2013

You are and will continue to be an inspiration to me. Judging from your twice-weekly letters you already have within you all the courage, heart, wisdom and hope that you will need during this time. Be strong!

From: juvenal hidalgo — Oct 25, 2013

Well of course i am shocked i love your twice weekly and had the privileged to meet at one of Mr. Dick Nelson’s workshop, i will pray for you and your prompt recovery, at our house we love you! we can all beat this. Juvenal y Chau

From: Ib — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, I am so sorry, and I do not know what to say. I wish I could give you a hug.

From: Jean-Marie Chapman — Oct 25, 2013

There is always hope and there is a very big God holding you in the palm of His Hand. Believe in miracles! You have a lot of painting to do! You are so awesome!

From: David Greer — Oct 25, 2013

My thoughts are with you, as always. Remain strong.

From: Doug Elliot — Oct 25, 2013

What devastating news for you, your family and your followers. I salute your bravery and look forward to re-reading your book.

From: Sandra G. McNichol — Oct 25, 2013

Dear dear Robert, I am stricken with this news. I’m sure you and your loved ones are reeling as well. Who am I ? I paint in my dreams, as I work so much to keep a roof over our heads and food in the fridge, that I’m too damn tired to paint in reality, yet. So, your wonderful paintings and painting experiences and travels that you share in your newsletter – full of encouragement and sharing and intelligent & kindly thoughts – well, you, and your newsletter, are very very important to me, valuable to me, beloved by me. After contemplating this news for you, this is what I do believe: You will reap the goodness & joy that you’ve sown, in this next part of your earthly journey. Take heart – stay the course – you are made of good stuff, as my Father alwas used to tell me. Love & hugs to you all, Sandra

From: Heather Bruce — Oct 25, 2013

I had to reread your message several times, as I kept thinking that it was because I am tired that I was misunderstanding it. I cannot imagine this world without your insights and commentary. Thank you for having the courage to share this news and not just disappear without an explanation. I am hoping and praying that you will find a solution that betrays that bomb diagnosis. I thank you for years of insightful and humorous newsletters that gave pause for thought….and not just for artists either. My heartfelt and sincere best wishes for everything healing to come to you….. Fondly and with Appreciation, Heather Bruce

From: Melissa — Oct 25, 2013

My husband has cholangiocarcinoma that has metastasized to the liver. He was told 6 months, and has been going for 2.5 years. He is still doing what he wants to do and independent, just resting more. He has been on chemo all this time, same chemo they use for pancreatic, and has tolerated it well. We never know the exact number of our days, but I just want you to know that sometimes it turns out better than we think. You are in my thoughts and prayers, You are a most generous man, and because you share so freely your inner life and thoughts, many count you as a dear and intimate friend. Go easy and seek your “new normal”.

From: Paula Farrington — Oct 25, 2013

I am so sorry to hear this news. As a fairly new subscriber, I am already happily enthralled by your wonderful newsletter … your perspective and inspiration … thank you! May you continue to know encouragement, appreciation, smiles, and a deep art-full journey that brings others more creatively into their own gifts. My thoughts and prayers will be with you and yours–and my heart wishes you much wellness and JOY.

From: Cyn McCurry — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, There are no certainties in life, no particular time here due to us. All that is certain is what we love, give and absorb while we are here. You, my friend have lived a very large and beautiful life, touched, inspired and encouraged more people than most of us could ever imagine. This is a time for you and your loved ones. Thank you gentle Robert for all you are and give. Warmly, Cyn McCurry

From: Cindy Williams — Oct 25, 2013

I am so sad about your news. I love your newsletters and your art. Please know that you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. BLESSINGS TO YOU :(

From: Janice Moser — Oct 25, 2013

I’m crying right now,I feel like were old friends.

From: Susan — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, My heart is breaking. You my Dear Friend have gotten me through some difficult times in my life,making me look at life and Art in a different way. You are a dear precious soul. We can be told when are time is up,but only God himself knows when are last breath will be. I pray for your healing and peace,cherish each day. We never know when any of us will leave this earth. Thanks for your love in sharing,back at you!

From: Isabel — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, may you and your family draw up strength from your love for eachother. Thank you for your openness, honesty, integrity and for all you have and will continue to contribute to the world. Best wishes for the times ahead. Deeply saddened to hear this news. Much love, admiration and respect. Isabel Oliver

From: Stephanie — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, I have been subscribing to your letters for 12 years, since college, and during my study-abroad when I chanced upon Sara’s inspiring travelogue. I had the chance to chat with you briefly over the phone when you were in Singapore in 2009. I feel like you have been a generous, gentle, warm-hearted, encouraging friend to me..and your weekly stories are ones that have accompanied me over the years. Thank you for keeping me going with your stories, jokes and advice. Thank you for being so loving, generous and inspirational. Sending you and your family the best best wishes.

From: Rita Marandino — Oct 25, 2013

Oh my God, I am so sorry to hear this terrible news! My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family and I am praying for a miracle…as I am sure all your family, friends and loyal readers are as well.

From: Gary VanHouten — Oct 25, 2013

I love to open my e-mail early, after making coffee and nobody else is yet up. As I did so this morning I thought, as I often do on Tuesdays and Fridays, “Oh good it’s a Robert’s Letter day.” Now, I’m just sitting here crying. Gary VanHouten Cadillac, Michigan

From: Margaret Norwood — Oct 25, 2013

I sit here quite numb but have tears down my cheeks. How many artists you have taught and fed and are loved by, you will never really know. You’ve touched the world far and wide with your generosity, caring and wonderful art. Thankyou, Thankyou Robert. God Bless you specially now, as you spend precious time with your loved ones. xx

From: Katherine Tyrrell — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert – I’ve greatly valued your words of wisdom over the many years I’ve been reading them – and great ideas and comments do not become redundant. I think it’s an excellent idea to do a rerun of past letters. Do please make time for yourself and your family – that’s what really matters right now.

From: Carole M. — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert: …and I do mean “Dear”, you are a close friend even though we have never met and I have learned so much over the last few years since discovering and being part of this huge circle of artists you’ve brought together thru your work and letters. I too know of many people who have heard the same “one year maybe” news and are still with us years later, fight hard and I will pray hard, we are all holding your hand in virtual space and I look forward to Sara’s letters as well.

From: Karen Elliott — Oct 25, 2013

I hope you’re feeling this wave of love through our shock and tears – thank you for the great gifts you’ve given through your insight, humour and common sense in these beautiful letters. Sending you healing thoughts and prayers.

From: Tony. — Oct 25, 2013

Sir, You are the last person on earth to deserve what has befallen you. You will remain my mentor and hero. My prayers are with you. Strength to you and your family.

From: Helen Tilston — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert I shall keep you in my prayers. Your twice weekly newsletter is always welcomed. Your thought on Sara writing once a week is exciting. Whatever you decide take good care of yourself and your audience will be here waiting for you when you feel like it.

From: Cindi — Oct 25, 2013

Such sad news. Sending a heartfelt wishes for wellness, peace, and miracles on your journey. Thank you so much for all that you have done to make our world so much better….may the goodness you shared be returned to you a hundred-fold

From: Judy — Oct 25, 2013

May you fully savor every day that you have to spend with your loved ones. We all care and grieve. Just live every day you have to the fullest.

From: Karen Frances — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, My thoughts and prayers are with you. I’ve read your letters for a long time. This is the first time I’ve commented. Just want you to know you make my heart sing – thank you.

From: Keith — Oct 25, 2013

Family, friends and well-wishers will help you through this difficult leg of the journey. There is more joy and creativity ahead. Fight and search.

From: Heather Dubreuil — Oct 25, 2013

Staggering news, Robert. Still trying to absorb the reality of it. Your strength and insight will be of great help to you and your family at this difficult time.

From: Adelaide Fraser — Oct 25, 2013

All of us who read your newsletter have been thoroughly shaken by your sad news. I believe in miracles. There must be one for you.

From: Amy Wallace — Oct 25, 2013

My thoughts are with you and your family. Your letters have always been and always will be a source of warmth and inspiration. Thank you for this gift.

From: Chris Goodal — Oct 25, 2013

Shock mixed with sadness. I can relate having been given similar news in 2009 only being diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. I’ve battled and it’s in remission, but there is no cure… yet. Interestingly enough, the cancer spurred me to do other things in my life and I found the joy of painting. Best wishes on your journey and hoping you too find new joys from this darkness.

From: Carole Pivarnik — Oct 25, 2013

I was so sorry to see this “bomb” in my inbox this morning and learn of the challenge you are facing. Be bold, be brave…it ain’t over til it’s over! Fingers crossed so hard that whatever course of treatment you choose allows you to be active, engaged with your family, and creative for as long as possible–and hopefully much longer than your doctor estimates. All the best and thank you so much for your valuable letters. I am glad you are thinking of ways to continue that wonderful service through your daughter.

From: Susan Elliott — Oct 25, 2013

I am not a painter. I’m a needle artist. And I have been reading, absorbing and applying your letters to my life and work for many years. I’ve referred countless other needle artists to your site because I have found such a resource and mentor in you. Isn’t it amazing how someone you’ve never met can mean so much to your life. The gift you have given me is greater than many of the gifts I’ve gotten from friends I know I love. And I take that back, I believe I do know and love you on some level. You have done GREAT work in this life Robert Genn. And I hope that brings you and your family tremendous peace and satisfaction when your time on this earth is done. Don’t worry about us. Your gift has been great enough. Live the rest of your days as you’ve lived your life up until now…with full abandon and painting it with all the colors of the earth…I shed my tears with you and your family in my kitchen here in Maryland as I wake to the first cup of tea for the day. Sending you love, courage and incredible gratitude, Susan Elliott

From: Kathybloom — Oct 25, 2013
From: Phyllis Steimel — Oct 25, 2013

Oh, Robert, I was heartsick this morning as I read your letter. You are such an inspiration, a great artist and teacher. Your words have sustained me on my “art journey” for years. I have encouraged many to subscribe to your newsletters and have devoured every word of “Painter’s Keys”. I am a cancer survivor and know all too well the emotions wrought by this “beast”. I wish you peace and will continue to follow your journey with hope and prayer.

From: Judith — Oct 25, 2013

If thoughts are real things, then you have positive energy from all over the earth coming your way. I am a newer artist and I have looked forward to your Posts for wisdom, optimism and common sense. I thought saying just that before would have clogged up your emails. Now it is our turn for awhile to send back to you what you have given to us. Sent with gratitude and affection,

From: rena williams — Oct 25, 2013

Thanks and best wishes from the heart, Robert.

From: Georgia Mason — Oct 25, 2013

No fear. All is well.

From: Marty — Oct 25, 2013

Insightful comments from an extraordinary man, good luck to you on your journey

From: ceah — Oct 25, 2013

Sorry to hear this news. Praying for you and your family. I hope Jesus Christ is your Lord and Saviour. If not, please consider turning your life over to Jesus. I care too much not to say this to you. All the best.

From: Laine — Oct 25, 2013

My heart is hurting for you and our family. But ….it’s not over yet!

From: Janet Badger — Oct 25, 2013

Know that your art will live on, your good words will forever echo in the minds of all who have looked for them and found them nourishing and chastening food for thought, all these years.

From: Clode Ambollet — Oct 25, 2013

Robert I am very touched by what you just place an ad we .. friendship is always the same virtual friendship .. I welcome your related texts your philosophy and your optimism .. I send you and your family .. positive thoughts .. footprints courage to face this battle .. friendships ..

From: Robert — Oct 25, 2013

You are in my prayers.

From: Penny Birch-Williams — Oct 25, 2013
From: Phyllis Steimel — Oct 25, 2013

Oh, Robert, I was heartsick this morning as I read your letter. You are such an inspiration, a great artist and teacher. Your words have sustained me on my “art journey” for years. I have encouraged many to subscribe to your newsletters and have devoured every word of “Painter’s Keys”. I am a cancer survivor and know all too well the emotions wrought by this “beast”. I wish you peace and will continue to follow your journey with hope and prayer.

From: Leslie — Oct 25, 2013

So hard to find words when yours have been so eloquent and inspirational–even in the face of this awful news. I will send love.

From: Michael Lang — Oct 25, 2013

So very sorry to hear this, Robert. Although I don’t know you personally, I have been reading your thought-provoking columns for a while now and feel that I know you a little. I wish you and your family all the best in this very difficult time. Best regards, Michael Michael Lang

From: Barbara Livingston — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, Stunned is an understatement this morning. You will be hearing from loyal friends around the globe, I know. Had to write to say thank you for all you’ve shared with us. You’ve brightened our days, made us all better artists and better people. You are amazing and special. You are much loved and I wish you strength and courage in the days ahead. Thank you for everything. With great affection.

From: Brenda R. Wright — Oct 25, 2013

Like everyone, I too was shocked to read this news Robert. I pray all goes well, as you face the challenges ahead. Your twice-weekly writings are so appreciated! Thank you for sharing ….

From: Chris Everest — Oct 25, 2013

Stunned…. Shocked….. I realised it couldn’t/wouldn’t be a wind-up but Why oh Why … Paint till the last second Bob. Thinking of you and your family. Best Wishes to all

From: Lori Fitzgerald — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Mr. Genn, I had to read your letter several times to realize what you are telling us. My heart and prayers go out to you and your family and friends. May the universe treat you and yours kindly. Bless you for all the you have given the world.

From: Kim Werfel — Oct 25, 2013

Oh Robert. If you only knew how important you are to my artistic well-being and growth. Even though we’ve never met, I feel that I know you as a great friend and mentor. I can’t believe this news, and won’t give up hope that just through the sheer force of the love that thousands have for you, maybe God will grant you an encore performance of many more years with a miracle remission or cure. Sending all the love one can send through this limited internet connection. Hugs and prayers, gratefully yours, Kim Werfel

From: Betsy Frahm — Oct 25, 2013

I too was hoping as I read that it was someone else you were talking about. You have many people praying for you and hoping that the diagnosis can be changed. Daily they make progress in research…keep on hoping as we all will. Prayers for you and your family.

From: Laurel Daniel — Oct 25, 2013

Twice weekly, I settle in with my coffee, open your letter, and read words that seem to be written just for me. You have become a friend and a trusted advisor, anticipating and informing my art journey. Today’s letter brings me great pain and sadness, but as always, it is full of your inspiring wisdom. Thank you for your continuous generosity. I am forever grateful. I will be keeping you in my thoughts and prayers as you fight this battle. Standing with you, Laurel

From: Nita — Oct 25, 2013

Shock, grief, wishes for an alternative. May you persevere and go on, knowing you have hundreds of supporters sending hope.

From: psharpe — Oct 25, 2013
From: Patricia Awapara — Oct 25, 2013

I cannot even imagine how you and your family feels right now. I wish for you to always have hope, Miracles happen every day. May your hearts be filled with peace in this difficult journey. Blessings.

From: Sandra Bos — Oct 25, 2013
From: Cyn Macgregor — Oct 25, 2013

Robert – I’ve been reading your letters for years. In the muck and muddle of crazy inboxes, yours always got read…my moment of zen. I am quite certain many, many of your readers feel the same way. Your service to the art community can be summed up with, “Robert does good.” And I thank you for that. Huge hug and much love

From: Ortrud Tyler — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, in this time of sometimes miracles, maybe they will find something to help you go on. All the good wishes and thoughts of your family and friends have to count for something. Nothing but good thoughts. Ortrud

From: Gigi — Oct 25, 2013

Your generosity of sharing yourself, your art, your knowledge is amazing; your generosity of sharing this news with us is beyond that. By allowing us to walk this journey with you and your family, Robert, you join the true leaders in our family of man. Your leadership has been a strong beacon of light; your strength the foundation for many new beginnings. Thank you for so much, Robert, many long prayers are coming your way.

From: Dee Maltby — Oct 25, 2013

There are few e-mails I always read, but yours are high on that list. You have become a friend, and I’ve often shared your wisdom and humor with those in my family who are also ‘in the arts,’ (actors, my inventor husband and creative kids). Your wisdom is deep, and mind-opening. I’ll hope and pray for a miracle, that second chance!

From: sonja — Oct 25, 2013

dear Robert Genn, i have enjoyed your letters and especially your beautiful sense of humor. the art world needs someone like you to stick around! may i suggest to fire your doctor, and fire your oncologists, and fire the entire medical team, and take your health into your own hands, where it belongs. no one, and i mean no one, has the right to tell anyone else how long they have to live, and to impose such a ridiculous verdict. it is pure arrogance. how dare anyone! because no one can possibly know about your inner power and your abilities to heal yourself without artificial interference. cancer is never a definite verdict, the medical establishment is the most limiting path to healing. it has very little to do with healing. they have such little, if any, understanding of the mind-body connection. perhaps you might be inspired to research alternative ways, such as raw juice fasting, a hugely successful way to heal the body and eliminate toxins. and since what is happening with one’s body is intricately related to one’s thoughts, it makes sense that we have this amazing ability to direct our thinking to that which we wish to achieve. meaning, put the focus on being healthy and joyful, and refuse to adapt to the gloom and doom that doctors promote. i hope that you will not let fear guide your decisions, but the knowing that you have everything you need inside of you to heal yourself. it is that very knowing that allows people to fire their doctors and take charge of their own health. juice fasting or whatever else you might discover, coupled with your wicked sense of humor should take care of everything. whenever something goes haywire with the body it is nothing but a great opportunity to learn about oneself. unfortunately, it is at this junction of discovery that most people panic and opt to allow needless medical interference, that totally messes up that valuable process of self-discovery and true healing. it is truly up to each one of us how well we wish to live. the art world needs your continued input, astute observations and your amazing attitude. all the best!

From: Connie N — Oct 25, 2013
From: Deborah Lambson — Oct 25, 2013

I’ve put words down and erased them several many people are saying it much better than I that I could just as easy say nothing. But that of course won’t do. We’ve never met and in that sense we are strangers, but your words have enriched my world and given me something higher to think about many times, and as do many of us I think, there’s a bond of some sort because of that. I thank you for sharing your gifts of creativity with us. Prayers and positive energies to you and your family.

From: Janet French — Oct 25, 2013

I have enjoyed your letters for the best year or so and am so sorry for you and your family. This is indeed sad news….please know that prayers are going are going out for you and yours…..

From: Pat Bishop — Oct 25, 2013

Prayers for you, Robert Genn. I love your writing, your teaching, your giving. Thank you.

From: Joan — Oct 25, 2013

Honoured that you share your life and learning with us…sending you healing energies, loving prayers, and hopeful thoughts….

From: Deb Dicker — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, Im sorry to read this. My thoughts go out to you and your family as you start a new journey in life.. Hugs to you all

From: Kim Duhaime — Oct 25, 2013

Like everyone here, I’m stunned and my heart goes out to you and your family. I’ve been following you since nearly the beginning of these letters. You’ve been an invaluable mentor to me, your twice-weekly letters having become an anchor that has kept me connected to art no matter what was going on in my life. You are one of the greats, Robert, and your simplicity, humility and pure generosity have inspired me to be a better person, even though we’ve never met. Best of luck, fight the good fight. We’re all rooting for you.

From: Lyn Asselta — Oct 25, 2013

It has been a joy to receive your letters over the years. When I first began my artistic journey, your twice-weekly letters of advice, humor, inspiration and wisdom were the encouragement I looked for to keep me moving forward. I will always be grateful. All the best to you and your family as you deal with whatever lies ahead of you…know that you have taught us all well. Thank you.

From: Lynn — Oct 25, 2013

Probably, I shouldn’t feel such overwhelming sadness for someone I’ve never met. But the reality is this; since receiving your newsletter for a number of years, you’ve become an integral part of my life as an artist and as a human being, via your words. Thank you for sharing so much of your wisdom and insight with us. Sending love and healing energy in your direction and hoping you can feel how very much you are loved by so many.

From: Carla — Oct 25, 2013

Shocked to hear of your cancer. You are in my prayers. Your letters are always thoughtful. I look forward to them in my mailbox. Be good to yourself.

From: GiselaTowner — Oct 25, 2013

I’ve been on your mailing list for many years and you feel like a dear friend to me, even though we have never spoken or met. I am so very sad to hear your terrible news. I lost my Dad to pancreatic cancer and all I can say is, please treasure every possible moment with you family. Don’t worry about all of us readers out here…you have left us all a magnificent legacy and we love you for it. But your time now belongs to your RL family and loved ones. Thank you for all you have given us…

From: Doug Lambrecht — Oct 25, 2013

Once in a great while comes a soul who touches others so deeply. Robert, your mark on the world of artist creations is truly indelible. Words alone cannot suffice to thank you for years of contributions. May god and all ascended masters ease your transition. namaste

From: Deborah Angilletta — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, We have never met but for years you have generously shared your words of wisdom and humor with me. At times it almost felt like you could read my mind and your letters seemed to be written just for my situation. I have print outs of some of your letters of inspiration taped to my studio walls. Now it is my turn to share with you, my prayers, my positive thoughts, my hope that they help you in any way you and your family need. Just know that you are loved. Thank you and blessings on you and your family.

From: Kim D. — Oct 25, 2013

Thank you for sharing your art & life with us for so many years. Your letters have been a constant source of inspiration and encouragement. You are a gift to this world. May your light continue to shine, even through this tough road ahead….much love to you and your family.

From: ALAN CAYTON — Oct 25, 2013

You remind me that everyday is a chance in a lifetime experience.

From: Leslie Bishop — Oct 25, 2013

Many, many thanks for years of your encouragement, support and wisdom! What a blessing you are to so many – you can have no idea how many lives you’ve affected. You’re just switching gears… Keep asking ‘what if’ and being open to the gifts that unfold in this new situation. You are surrounded by love and prayer.

From: Nancy M. — Oct 25, 2013

Of all the art info there is on the internet I have always looked forward to receiving your newsletter. They are very inspiring and refreshing and I always learn a little something from them. Having a fulfilled life which you have had will bring you the strength you need to continue on with whatever happens. Your are a true blessing to your readers and loved ones. Thank you and continue on. It’s not the end until it ends.

From: Sally Treanor — Oct 25, 2013

Thank you for the reminder that life is fleeting. Best wishes on the hard days ahead.

From: Jamie Kirkland — Oct 25, 2013

You have visited my studio twice a week for over ten years now and I have loved every letter! Your gentle humor and wisdom is such a delight. Please know my prayers go out to you and your family. Thank you for creating our community! You have given us so much!

From: Lisa — Oct 25, 2013

I found myself on your post this morning and I”m not even sure how. I do not know you, but I am touched by your words. Your art is beautiful and apparently so is your soul. Sending you healing thoughts, words, vibes, energy and prayers.

From: Dawn Banning — Oct 25, 2013

Bob, The fact that you have only just received this news days ago,yet you express your concern to be sincerely of ‘continuous service’ is a testament to the kind of person you are and your true legacy. Sending positive healing thoughts your way, d

From: Sarah — Oct 25, 2013

You are the very best site on the web. Thank you for all your insight, wisdom, humor and the knowledge you share so generously. My heart goes out to you and your family, and I’m praying that new advances in the fight against pancreatic cancer will be available to you. You are well loved and appreciated.

From: Mary Lou Colgin — Oct 25, 2013

I was so sorry to read this post. Please get well for you, your family, and admirers from all over the world.

From: Molly White — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, I am a relatively new artist, just discovering your wonderful twice-weekly letter about a year and a half ago. I have learned so much from you in this short span of time. I am incredibly heartsick that you and your family are having to fight this battle with cancer. You are so brave to share this with us and you will be in my thoughts and prayers daily. You have touched so many people, all over the world and we are all pulling for you. Many thanks for sharing your wealth of knowledge with us. God bless you, Robert.

From: Marlaine — Oct 25, 2013

I have been reading your letters for many, many years on the advice of a teacher I once had. I am not a painter but I have found them to be inspiring and helpful to me in my chosen creative career. I am so saddened to hear your news and will keep you and your family in my prayers and thoughts. Your paintings and your words have been and will continue to be an inspiration to many, many people.

From: Karyl Howard — Oct 25, 2013

I was stunned with this news and my words will be nothing more than what all of the others have said! May love surround you, may truth be your guide, may peace be in your heart.

From: Linda Cardella — Oct 25, 2013

I read your post last night but was too sad and too much in shock to comment. Thank you for your art and for sharing your knowledge and insights over the years. Thank you. Now it’s time to take care of yourself and your family. I wish you and your family every possible positive outcome. My prayers for all of you.

From: Jackie Knott — Oct 25, 2013
From: Sandra Cutrer — Oct 25, 2013

My first reaction was black spots before my eyes, holding my breath, and wondering if I was reading your post incorrectly. I went back and read it twice to make sure. I remember “the bomb” we got for our only daughter- a little over 13 years ago. she had third stage ovarian cancer, two babies a year apart at home, and a husband who had already gone through another form of cancer.Don’t give up- ride the ride- do your best, like everything else you seem to have set your mind to do. God bless you. There are many of us on the side lines cheering you on. Prayers for you from south Texas.

From: Kim Rodeffer Funk — Oct 25, 2013

I can only echo the words of others here – stay strong, be positive and brave and know the strength of your own mind, body and spirit. In this, you very well may come through this thing with the help of a wonderful medical community. The world over is sending powerful, healing energy your way, as this is the only way we can now give back what you have so freely given over the years! We stand with you in this journey.

From: Laura Senchuk — Oct 25, 2013
From: Doreen E Lepore — Oct 25, 2013

Best wishes to you and your family.

From: Dottie Bassett — Oct 25, 2013
From: Jamaal Barber — Oct 25, 2013

My uncle got that same bomb dropped on him and us. They gave him 1 year and he lived another 4 years before passing recently. I’ve been reading your letters faithfully every week for a long time and my heart goes out to your and your family. That diagnosis is not the end. The fight continues my friend. I pray for you to have strength to endure and triumph over this new fight.

From: Kate Pearce — Oct 25, 2013
From: Laurie Pace — Oct 25, 2013

Prayers surround you, hope abounds and may every moment be lived with joy. You are a great presence in the lives of so many in this world and your words and constant caring about others is a true legacy.

From: Cynthia Feth — Oct 25, 2013

Bob, your paintings bring us daily joy and will forever be a part of our lives. You are a rare and lovely man. Thanks for all you have shared with us, Kevin & Cynthia

From: Marlene Lewis — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, Reading your letters has always added light to my life. I hope my deep-felt, healing wishes for you add light to yours. Thank you for all you have given.

From: Janice Hanson — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert: I, like all those above, am shell-shocked by your news. Please know your columns have been saved and reread many times by fellow artists. Your wisdom has enhanced many of our lives. Thoughts and prayers for you and your family.

From: Sabrina Hill — Oct 25, 2013

Wow, that is the bomb. I sit in my studio, reading your letter…my most heartfelt prayers are extended for you and your family. You are an inspiration, and an old friend–though we have never met. God’s Blesssing for you.

From: liz oconnor — Oct 25, 2013

I wish for you hope and asurrounding of love and peacemakers go out to you.I have followed your letters for six years and they and you are a part of my weekly art.thanks for this.huggs and love I send your way. Liz

From: Olinda Everett — Oct 25, 2013

I have been reading these letters for 13 years. Sometimes I feel like giving up or surrendering and there comes the next one and I pick up again, prideful and understood. I am sad right now, to be considering the end of that road. Maybe life does give one a second chance.

From: Jennifer VonStein — Oct 25, 2013

Keep the faith as they say!!!! Pancreatic cancer can be a devastating diagnosis, but when my mom was diagnosed with it, I found that it brought all that was important to her and her family, into razor sharp focus. It turned out to be a truly profound and life changing experience for all of us.Life is an adventure after all, and we never know what twists and turns it will take. You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers, as well as in thousands of others around the globe! Stay strong, my friend who’ve I’ve never met.

From: Rose — Oct 25, 2013

A lot can happen in a year…….do not lose hope or faith……..prayers are with you. Rose

From: Lynn — Oct 25, 2013

Thank you for all you’ve shared with me. I wish you a fascinating, peaceful, wondrous journey!

From: Karen Koch — Oct 25, 2013

Robert – we haven’t met, and I only know you through your letters, but please know that I truly appreciate them and eagerly open each one when it appears in my inbox. I have taken much of your advice to heart in my own art practice. My prayers are with you, my friend, as you venture into the next chapter of your life. Stay strong, and know that your friends and supporters are here for you.

From: John Struck — Oct 25, 2013

There are no words! You are part of the landscape of my creative life – provocative, amusing, heart felt, a muse, a much treasured gift that appears in my inbox – looked forward to, read with anticipation of gems inside, always saved- never erased, never forgotten. THANK YOU for making my life better! John R. Struck

From: Andrew Sookrah — Oct 25, 2013
From: Megan Taylor — Oct 25, 2013

Thank you. Thank you for sharing your talent, spirit, insights, experience, passion and grace. Most of all thank you for being such a generous and inspiring human being. Big hug. I keep you and yours (whom I’ve never met or known) in my heart. I hope nothing for you all but more hope, more strength and love on this next journey.

From: Suzy Morgan — Oct 25, 2013

I am deeply saddened, you have been a friend and neighbor. My husband and I have had a twice-weekly ritual for a long time … We get coffee and look to see what Robert has to say today. I adore your clarity and straight forward manner and your bravery to always share the truth. We will continue our ritual as long as we can. Bless you and yours. Suzy

From: Barbara Clark — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, Like everyone else whose life you have touched, I am deeply saddened by your news. My thoughts and prayers are with you for success in the battle ahead.

From: judy — Oct 25, 2013

all the best to you on this journey – you’ve sent so much beautiful energy out over the years – may it all come back to you multiplied many times!

From: Cheryl Bollenbach — Oct 25, 2013

I am so very sorry to hear your sad news. I am not a painter, but a fiber artist and have gained so much insight from your letters over the years. I wish you and your family all the best, and thank you for that gift. . . your thoughts recorded in those letters.

From: Marilyn Muller — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert: I am sending you my prayers and good thoughts. Your wonderful letters have touched me over the years, for your advice to the artist, the community you have created,and above all your humanity and spirituality. You are cherished by so many. Marilyn

From: JoAnne Hungate — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, As I read the many, many comments already made, I’m hoping all our words of support will give you the strength you need for the months ahead. Keep your chin up and keep marching as long as you can. With many best wishes.

From: Bonnie Leigh Hamlin — Oct 25, 2013

My thoughts, wishes and prayers are with you and your family.

From: GAIL HARPER — Oct 25, 2013


From: Ingrid Christensen — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, I send you much love and light, both of which I’ve found in abundance in your letters over the years. My thoughts are with you and yours.

From: Sandy Fisher — Oct 25, 2013

Prayers for healing are being showered upon you from all over the world. You are and will continue to be an inspiration to artists for all eternity. God has the last word on your life, so try not to focus on the natural world and word as spoken by the doctor, but hang on for a miracle. Do not mourn tomorrow for it has enough troubles of its own. Live each day and be present in the moment.

From: Fern — Oct 25, 2013

Your words slapped the breath right out of me. Thank you for all the information and inspiration you have shared with me over the years while I sit at my computer atop my hill in the Berkshires. You have helped to make my world a better place. In the weeks and months to come if you receive back even a small portion of what you have given you will be blessed. I send my peace and love to you and your family.

From: Carol Taylor — Oct 25, 2013

I am quite shocked. I did not read your “The Bomb” news until this morning. Last night I thought “The Bomb” was going to discuss a bad painting….needless to say, I am so sorry to hear the news, god be with you and your family, and live each moment to the fullest!

From: Nancy — Oct 25, 2013

You have taught me so much about art, but more about generosity of spirit. I hope you will be buoyed by the waves of love and healing sent to you by your many admirers. With deepest gratitude and well wishes…

From: Diane King — Oct 25, 2013

I will be praying for you and your family during this difficult time. Rest in the Lord. He will hold your hand through all of it. God bless you, Robert. You have been a blessing to many.

From: Leslie Redhead — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, you have been and always will be an inspiration. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family at this time.

From: Ross Lynem — Oct 25, 2013

I’ve been a subscriber and admirer of your art for years Robert and looked forward to each and every one of your twice weekly letters. Thank you for being so generous with your wisdom and knowledge. It means so much to so many. My heart is heavy after reading “The Bomb”. Much love is being sent your way.

From: Susan Spar — Oct 25, 2013

I pray that this is just a nasty bump on the sometimes rough and winding road of an artist. Fight hard! There are so many if us out here who see you as a light that brightens our day and reminds us that the joy we experience on this road are ALWAYS worth the the struggles we endure. Fight hard! We’re praying for you. All of us. Each in our own way.

From: Kathleen Theriault — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, I read your letter just after viewing my dvd copy of the Aug. 23-26 Bugaboo Plein air painting workshop! The DVD arrived into my mailbox today and it was such a thrill to relive the experience once again! Your kind and generous spirit and motivational words of encouragement will be treasured by me forever. You have truly inspired me to take my Paintings to the next level. The big canvases are on my easel as I write this letter. It is such an honour to know you as a friend and mentor! May God give you and your family peace at this difficult time. Sincerely, Kathleen Theriault

From: Betsy Curran — Oct 25, 2013
From: Janee Ward — Oct 25, 2013
From: Susan Kellogg, Austin, TX — Oct 25, 2013

Your bomb has also struck many people today. I had just been daring to wonder what it would be like if your letters stopped arriving. The prospect has become real too soon. Your letters have helped me get through my later life by keeping the art spirit alive and I am grateful. Life is a process of getting used to progressively worse ideas, as defined by your sad announcement. I hope you have the best and most creative doctors and are able to thrive and survive and as long as you can. I wish you and your beloved family and friends well

From: Dee Dee Whittle — Oct 25, 2013

Heartbreaking news, Robert. I pray you’ll be washed in love, brushed with angel’s wings, stroked with comfort, and painted with much peace as you deal with this news. You mean so much to so many.

From: Jill Berry — Oct 25, 2013

Thank You for being the sharing sort! So much time & creativity that has enriched today’s Art World! God-strength to you. What a blessing to us all – your Art Spirit!

From: Suzette Fram — Oct 25, 2013

Shock. Sadness. Gratitude for all you have done. Hope that your road will be easier and longer than predicted. If hope and good wishes from around the world help, you certainly have that. God bless.

From: Sheila Minifie — Oct 25, 2013
From: Ruth Barnett — Oct 25, 2013

Dearest Robert, You and your family are in our thoughts and prayers. Please remember, miracles do happen. I can say with assurance that you are in the hearts of thousands of people who are sending you all their positive energy and healing thoughts. Remember that as you start this battle. And thank you for your letters. You are a true inspiration. From a survivor, love and hope, Ruth

From: Stacey — Oct 25, 2013

I’m sorry it’s taken this for me to write and tell you what a source of wisdom and inspiration you are and have been, these many years. I will hold out hope for you, and pray for the best for you and your family. Thank you for everything.

From: Susan Kellogg, Austin, TX — Oct 25, 2013

One more thing…greedy perhaps, but maybe you and Sara could tape some interviews together.

From: Linda Shoults — Oct 25, 2013

So bummed about your news. Your letters have been so inspiring to me as an emerging artist and have helped me over some rough bumps. The best advise that I got when battling stage four Lymphoma was not to listen to the negative inner thoughts. Keep a positive outlook, do what you love, enjoy time with family and eat healthy.

From: Phil Chadwick — Oct 25, 2013

Miracles can happen… the power of positive thought from a soul as creative as yours cannot be underestimated.

From: Kate Dardine — Oct 25, 2013

My prayers are with you and your family. We can’t predict the future, we can’t change the past, we can only live in the present. Thank you for allowing us into your life.

From: Nut Tmu-Ankh Butterfly — Oct 25, 2013

As a minister and teacher, I am a spiritual artist, not a visual one. Still these letters are vital nourishment for my work and my soul. I happily add mine to the stream of prayers pouring out to you and your family. Thank YOU for sharing this intimate truth and allowing us to stand with you in love.

From: Lisa Hut — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert. Sending love and prayers from Colorado. Unlike the coffee drinkers I save the letters for nighttime – I get in bed and read them on my iPad when I have the time to contemplate, reread them and absorb all that you generously share. I have loved every bit of your wisdom, advice and humor. XO from yet another stranger that considers you a friend. L

From: Ann Davis — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, you are Family!!! Make Dr Cheyenne take it back!! I know you will be posting years from today!!! My gratitude for your wisdom over the years is unbounded!!! With all of us supporting you, I know you will heal!

From: Claire Remsberg — Oct 25, 2013

I expect you will get more responses to this post than any other. I have been following your letters for about a year now and looked forward to each new one. I appreciate your candidness, thoughtfulness and delighted in getting to know you through your words. I hope your time left is much longer than predicted and rich as all get out. You are blessed to have so many who care about you.

From: Tamara — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, Your letters have been a source of inspiration and amusement for me. Thank you. We are all marching along in this journey from birth to death. You, however, have been given a glance at the map. I’m sure you’ll continue to use your time (be it seconds or decades) with gusto and elan. I wish you well.

From: Helen McHargue — Oct 25, 2013

I’m hoping for a miracle. Your letters are the highlight of my week…and I’m not an artist, just a huge fan of your writing, insights and splendid observations. Thank you for all you do, but I’m not ready to say goodbye. We need you here, writing and painting for years to come. Much love to you and your family.

From: Cleta Grant — Oct 25, 2013

I have no words to express my sadness at this news. As someone else said, I hoped you were writing about someone else. I’m such a fan of your work and the twice weekly letters. You’ve given us all so much inspiration and joy. Thank you.

From: Rick Rotante — Oct 25, 2013

Robert – Words can not express the feeling of sadness and concern I have at this moment. There are new procedures being discovered every day and with the advances in science and medicine there is a good chance that something can be done. This is not a dead sentence. You can and will beat this. I certainly won’t say I understand what you are going through, but I can say that everyone whose life you have touched since the start of your site, has you in their prayers and are sending good vibes to you even as I type. I know, through you clickbacks, you are a brave soul and have a strong and faithful support system to see you through this. You are an inspiration to many, myself included. It is because of you and your twice weekly letter that I considered writing an art column that has continued going on two years. I know you will be inundated with emails and I wish to say that if there is anything I can offer to do, I would gladly consider helping in any way I can. Sincerely.

From: Ann Wheatcroft — Oct 25, 2013

Best wishes Robert, you are in my meditations.

From: Alison Brennen — Oct 25, 2013

My thoughts and prayers are with you.

From: Marie Martin — Oct 25, 2013

My heart is full to the brim with gratitude that you have given so much of yourself to so many! If I’m able to say when “my doctor knocks on my door” that I’ve done HALF AS MUCH as you have for others, I will know I’ve “done good”. Blessings to you and yours Robert. Thank you.

From: Eleanor Reykjalin — Oct 25, 2013

I have very few words and emotions to add to the growing number of comments… Thank You for the varied letters you have written to each one of us. I have looked forward to every letter for about 7 years, you see, I live in an area where there are very few people that talk or do art, they seem to think its a hobby for me, not a passion… I will truly miss the twice weekly letters, I also understand your life is being consumed with the dropping of the C Bomb… I send only Light, Love and Healing Energy to YOU, my Friend and to your family…. I was visiting and getting my art fix at the Sherniak Gallery in Assiniboia, Saskatchewan, Canada… as I was in awe of the many exquisite pieces… I stood transfixed to see an original of yours of a totem pole and I thought to myself… I know this guy, haven’t actually met you, but I know, I know you as a friend and fellow artist… I have been honoured… and also am humbled and honoured to have been asked by Bill Sherniak to have an exhibition of my work in November/ December 2014… Thank You Robert… Namaste my friend

From: tatjana — Oct 25, 2013

Bob, a lot can be done and you’ll do it! You have the best support system of family and friends and you are extraordinary. We are all with you!

From: Harriet Brigdale — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, I am so sorry to hear your news, you have given me a wonderful thing for which I will always be grateful. Janet Badger and I met at your site years and years ago and have been friends ever since . We have never met, yet, but Janet has been an inspiring friend. Just like you are to me and many people, take good care of yourself and who knows what life might bring, all my best wishes,

From: Janet Almond — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, Thank you for many years of encouragement and inspiration from your letters. Your news saddens me more than words can express. My heart and thoughts are with you and your family. Keep the positive thoughts that are coming your way from your many fans.

From: Doreen Shann — Oct 25, 2013

OMG, sometimes life is just not fair. Strangely, I recently was thinking what would happen if you were not around to impart your wisdom, great humor and wonderful knowledge and motivation. I am not very good with words but your letters always mean so much to me. I am sending prayers and positive vibes your way. I know people worldwide will be hoping and praying for you. Your are indeed a gem, Robert Genn.

From: Ron Gianola — Oct 25, 2013

I am very sad to hear your news. Thank you for the wonderful gift of the art spirit you gave me and all the others for so many years. Good luck to you and your family.

From: Dottie Dracos — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, I feel as if a family member has become ill. Your love letters to art have inspired, supported and encouraged me, have made me laugh out loud, have given me hope when I had little — in sum, have been a special part of my life for quite a few years now. My heart goes out to you and your family. Take care of yourself now. You have a lot of people out here who care more for you than you can possibly imagine. I send you this note with love and gratitude and all the best hopes and wishes I can muster for a positive outcome.

From: Joshua Blewett — Oct 25, 2013

I’ve been reading your letters for years . Keep up the good fight !

From: Janet Summers — Oct 25, 2013
From: Sheryl Reinhart — Oct 25, 2013

I once wrote to you directly and was shocked that you wrote back to me immediately with a wonderful comment about my art. You are a guiding light to so many. Sending my heartfelt love.

From: David Kelavey — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, you are a massive inspiration. You have probably kick-started many, many lives artistic (mine included). Whatever happens your legacy will be beyond measure. Best of luck.

From: Valerie Malley — Oct 25, 2013

Gobsmacked. May you and your family find calmness and strength over the next period of time as you deal with the fight you face. May your doctors find the key to your recovery as they come together and work with you. And if someone gives you the gift of a teddy bear, feel free to punch it.

From: Terry Mason — Oct 25, 2013

Thank you for your amazing gift to artists everywhere. You have kept us painting and painting better all the time. You could not have made a bigger difference in the lives of so many artists. Thank you…and safe journey.

From: Elise Nicely — Oct 25, 2013

Robert you are in my prayers. I so look forward to your letters each week. Your positive attitude and your love for your fellow artists permeates every letter! I have learned a great deal from you even though you and I have never met. You have also lifted my spirit when I have been down in the dumps! I am sending you and your family all the love and positive vibes I can generate!

From: Linda Schiffer — Oct 25, 2013

I am not a painter (I work in fiber) but I have been a long-time subscriber to your bi-weekly letters as I find that your essays help me focus on my own medium as well. The shock wave is rippling across me this morning – my heart goes out to you and your family! I hope you realize that your work has influenced many whose names you may never know. My heart is with you and yours. Linda

From: Susan Warner — Oct 25, 2013
From: marion evamy — Oct 25, 2013

Sending you a hug on this international artists day – you are an international artist in the truest sense of the word – sharing your knowledge and insights with the rest of us – my thoughts are with you and your family.

From: Sally Ogletree — Oct 25, 2013
From: Barbara — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, what a shock! So first of all tons of get – well – soon wishes from Germany! I hope you’ll find the best experts to help you and to heal you. You can be sure to get good vibes from across the globe that help you to restore your health. Throughout the years you’ve become a very dear friend of mine, who constantly kept me going on in finding my own personal way as a painter. Thank you for the wonderful longtime – present of your artistic insights and guidance twice a week. All the best for you and your family – and I hope to get some good news from you soon. Barbara

From: Cindy S — Oct 25, 2013

Very sorry to hear this news. I hope you beat the dire prediction. I agree it’s too soon for you to leave this life. I admire your courage.

From: DeAnna — Oct 25, 2013

I am so sorry to read your news. You have been in inspiration to me and I wish I could be the same for you. Just know that you are appreciated and my thoughts are with you. Do what you need to do for you and your family.

From: Sandy Robinson — Oct 25, 2013

Our hearts and prayers are with you and family. You will be missed.

From: claire — Oct 25, 2013

Shocking and sad news, Robert! I had to read your letter a second time in order to let it all sink in. As another reader wrote, sometimes pancreatic cancer goes into remission and this is of course the outcome I wish for you. Thank you for your biweekly letter, I am a new subscriber but always look forward to your words of wisdom and helpful hints. Live each day as fully as you possibly can, bask in the love of family and friends. Take care as I will continue to look forward to hearing your voice.

From: Mary — Oct 25, 2013

Get a second opinion- it bought my Mother 18+ years after her pancreatic diagnosis. Whipple and radiation.

From: Tricia Hardie — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, it was quite a shock to read your e-mail today. I wish you well and will keep you in my thoughts. Take care of yourself.

From: Cathy Scott — Oct 25, 2013

I am truly saddened by your news. You and your family are in our prayers. Thank you so much for sharing yourself and your amazing art over the years!

From: Laury Ravenstein — Oct 25, 2013

What can be said that was not already said. My tears are real. The impact you have had on artists around the world is real. Your wisdom is real and your family is blessed. Thank you for the years you have advised artists on all manner of struggles and joys. Travel this road with the same power and grace you have given to all other paths…

From: Jennifer Sparacino — Oct 25, 2013

Robert — I’m not sure what to say that has not already been so eloquently expressed here. I feel I speak for so many when I say that I have felt truly blessed to have met you both in person, and through your letters. I am a full time artist today in part because of the inspiration and openness you have so freely shared with us all—through you following your heart you have shown that others may too, follow theirs. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Respectfully and admirably yours, Jennifer

From: kathe — Oct 25, 2013

As a new subscriber and a cancer survivor and thriver, I wish you all the best on this intense journey. Blessings and peace.

From: Anita Stephenson — Oct 25, 2013

I too had tears this morning…but I do believe that there were thoughts and prayers lifted from all over our world this morning, just for you. You have touched us all. Your letters have meant so much to me and I will always keep you in my heart!!

From: Jacquelyn Sloane Siklos — Oct 25, 2013

I have only known you through your emails, but they have inspired me, and have been shared with friends many times, so it was upsetting to read your news. So many here have better expressed what I feel. I second them all and hope for the best for you and your family, Jacquelyn

From: Janell Mithani — Oct 25, 2013

So sorry to hear your news, I wish you and your family the best. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

From: stella — Oct 25, 2013

wishing you well soon!

From: nancy — Oct 25, 2013

I’m also saddened by your news. Thank you so much for your generosities. Best wishes to you and your family. I do hope the cancer will go into remission, but whatever the case, may you continue to experience peace and love.

From: sonja — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, your wisdom and humor touch many. I am sending wishes of healing and strength to you this morning .Thank you for your honesty and joy you share weekly with artists everywhere. with your family and support expect a miracle.

From: Verna — Oct 25, 2013

The power of the Collective Consciousness (call it prayer or whatever word you choose) is limitless. I propose that Robert’s “Twice Weekly Letter” friends meet “energetically in spirit” for a few minutes at the same time each day to send love and healing energy to Robert. How about 1:00 P.M Mountain Standard time. The results are sure to be staggering! In Light & Enormous Love, Verna

From: Joanne — Oct 25, 2013

Your newsletter is new for me and such a refreshing find. You are such a wonderful inspiration in your craft and your reflections so valued in a world lost in superficialities. I wish I’d come across your newsletter much sooner but will stay connected as long as you are able. You have been a true blessing to me in such a short time. Wishing you God’s peace and trust in His providential care. Joanne

From: Susie — Oct 25, 2013

One day at a time…xo

From: Marianna — Oct 25, 2013

What to even say….your newsletters are sort of a lifeline and Although you don’t know me, I feel like I’ve come to know you through your beautifully written and unbelievably helpful letters. I’m so sad about your diagnosis and will be praying for your recovery and peace for you and your family. Our God is awesome.

From: Cindy Walton — Oct 25, 2013

Prayer and esteem to you.

From: Tania Teller-Feldshuh — Oct 25, 2013

Stunning. A comedic troupe once used the comic line “No one expects the Spanish Inquisition.” But we know better, and despite ourselves, we still do not. I hope things go as well as possible for you.

From: AB — Oct 25, 2013
From: Don Rogich — Oct 25, 2013

You have had a fortunate life, produced great art and given joy and encouragement to many. But somehow, when faced with what you are now, this may seem of little value. But in the end it is all that we have and we must remind ourselves that we all must face the fact that we are mortal. You have help me see that spending the time we have wisely and showing others the beauty we see in the world helps bring joy. Thank you for shining this light in the world.

From: Marilynn Brandenburger — Oct 25, 2013

Oh, Robert, I am grieved to read this news. I wish you all the best as you wrestle with this new demon in your life. May you overcome and go on to paint and write for decades more. Meanwhile, thank you so very, very much for your letters. They have kept me joyously painting….

From: Mary Wagstaff — Oct 25, 2013

Yet another admirer, who has gotten so much out of your letter over the past years but has never written.. I had to write to thank you for sharing this too with us. Holding you in my heart…Never thought I would respond thusly to an “online” presence.. The desire to make art which brings us all together creates a unexplainable and wonderful bond. Best wishes.

From: Patty Oates — Oct 25, 2013

For so long I have felt you are an extraordinary person in the world, and have felt fortunate to know of you and glad to receive your weekly messages. It is hard to believe this news, but you are facing it head on and that will help heal you. You will be in my thoughts each day.

From: Jean Pickard — Oct 25, 2013

sigh. Thank you for everything.

From: Jill Campbell/ Bukovnik — Oct 25, 2013

Extraordinary Robert, You don’t know me or even most of the people who have written to you & shared their good wishes & grief of this latest news. You have come into our lives twice a week, talked to us in plain english, shared your wisdom & life experiences with us. Because of this you have become our good friend & mentor. We feel that you are part of our family & a special friend we can trust. You’ve shown us the way, the purpose, the joy of painting & that quality counts. I’ve always believed that every person in the world counts & has something meaningful to contribute. That each one of us can give & contribute to make this world a better place. Robert, you were blessed with more. More to give, share, teach, paint, encourage & write. You have freely given us more in your life time & it will take us the rest of our life time to learn. I wish you well & hope that something can be done to prolong the year (many people have lived way past what a Dr. has said…after all they’re not God). Im sure your family realizes that they are very blessed to know what is truly important & to embrace every moment of everyday. With all my love & best wishes, jill

From: Amy Rindfleisch — Oct 25, 2013

If all we can take with us is the love we’ve given out, then your bags are full! Not that you’re ready to pack yet! I will be praying for a miraculous recovery and peace. Thanks for your guidance.

From: Kanayo Ede — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, take heart and know that my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family at this difficult times. I am sending you vibrations of love and healing, I am also adding your name to our list in my prayer group. You will be healed. . . don’t worry it shall be well.

From: Gail Harker — Oct 25, 2013

I just found your wonderful site not long ago and thought what a great contribution you were giving freely to so many people. Feel the warmth and good kind wishes from me and countless others! Thank you.

From: Suzanne Jensen — Oct 25, 2013

I believe that it is our (your community of artists) turn to wish you the strength to overcome this and love is a very powerful thing. We are with you in spirit all the way Robert.

From: Brian Simons — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, so sorry to hear the news, thanks so much for the huge contribution you’ve made to all us painters and I hope your remaining time will be full of love, family and friends. Wil remember you in my prayers!

From: Kathryn — Oct 25, 2013
From: Lara Mellon – Durban, South Africa — Oct 25, 2013
From: Jan.M’Ghee — Oct 25, 2013

I have never met you Robert but feel I know you through your letters. They have amused me, challenged me and inspired me, I relish your advice and admire your ‘get to it’ attitude. I wish you a journey full of hope, love and kindness.

From: Jeri Corbin — Oct 25, 2013

Please know you anrd your family are on my prayer list. I ask God to wrap a mantle of His Love and Strength around all of you; that you will attain the necessary stamina and peace to deal with the upcoming trials. Lovingly, and in His Service, Jeri

From: Bette Lee Collins — Oct 25, 2013

I join all of the above comments in wishing,hoping,praying for you and your family…we are all giving back to you what you have given us through the years..encouragement,inspiration,hope and love…and such kindness of spirit…

From: faithful reader — Oct 25, 2013
From: Paddy Cake — Oct 25, 2013

We have never met in person but you are an important part of my life. I am grateful for the way you have always speak from the heart and the way you honour artists from around the world. With love to you and your family.

From: Phil Puzick — Oct 25, 2013

Thank you Robert.

From: Rosemary — Oct 25, 2013
From: sue Rochford — Oct 25, 2013

Its not over till its over. Please do not discard things. Everything you have done is precious to us.

From: Pam — Oct 25, 2013

I’m so sorry to read about this. May the spirits be with you and your family.

From: Allen Wilson — Oct 25, 2013

For many years I have been a ‘Robert Genn follower’, often asking ‘his’ question: “What could be …?” – curiosity being a source of inspiration for art and life. Robert, may you continue to inspire for 500 years or more, despite the recent ‘time-bomb’.

From: Lynn Erickson — Oct 25, 2013

I’m still in shock! Thank you so much for your continuing inspiration and encouragement! It has definitely changed my life! My thoughts and prayers are with you. May you gather together all the love, hope and energy needed to carry on, and to join the ranks of the ‘survivors’! Never give up!!

From: Bob Sheridan — Oct 25, 2013

All of a sudden many things have lost their importance to me. I feel as if I am losing a member of my family. Your influence has been significant beyond description. I value your friendship. Beyond that, what else do we have? Regards to your family.

From: Susan Johnson — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, Your letters have been such an inspiration to me and to so many others. Know that this new “journey” will be a challenging one, but if anyone can find a positive or even a humorous moment or two in it, you’ll do it. You take care. Sincerely, Susan Johnson, Colorado Springs, CO

From: Bob Frank — Oct 25, 2013

Hi Robert …… Well, at least your writing style hasn’t changed. You let us know right at the beginning what you’re going to talk about. My painting buddy, teacher, friend Tom Sutherland from Melrose, MA got the same diagnosis along with the “maybe a year” prediction about a year and a half ago. His doctor added ” stage four to both pancreatic and liver cancer” to make it even scarier. We paint together every Tuesday and Wednesday with a group of 15 that we affectionately call “Tom’s Group”. He lost his hair and about 60 pounds but not his passion for painting and his desire to pass it on to the rest of us. Except for a one-week vacation, he hasn’t missed a Tuesday or Wednesday. I think he schedules his chemo around our group meetings. Tom is doing what he loves. There is a lot more that you have to teach us and I look forward to receiving Robert Genn Twice-Weekly Letters about painting, life or whatever the hell you feel like talking about.

From: Gail Taylor — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, my thoughts are with you and your family as you travel this road. Your invaluable wisdom that you shared will always be appreciated and remembered. “You” are one in a million. God be with you. Gail

From: Ron Wilson — Oct 25, 2013

Bob – I’m in tears. You have always inspired me ever since I came to Canada twenty-two years ago. It was at a Jenny Brown auction on the Island that I first saw your Gennized colour and composition. It was great. It blew every other painting out of the ballpark. Then you awarded me first prize at a Sidney paint-out and gave me your book, signed. There’s more. Your erudition, your cars. Stuff. Yesterday I was a the Oak Bay gallery and saw your new works. I told Dale that I’d come in to get my Genn lift. She told me how nice you are. Fortunately you and yours will enjoy the quality of life together for a long time into the future. Live it. We’re with you sir. Ron in Victoria, same age.

From: Barbara Smith — Oct 25, 2013

I am so far from even thinking I could sell my paintings. However I have been very pleased with some paintings. I love the process of my creativity, and the quietness it brings into my life. I say that to say this, Years ago my art instructor gave me your website, and through the years I have been encouraged by you letters. I look forward to them and feel as though I’m receiving word from an old friend. I am sad to hear the bad news, however I believe There is a Hope that is greater than any news or doctor. So my prayers are for you Robert.

From: Carol Ann McNeil — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert I am saddened by your health news and wish you and your family well on your journey. I have never written before but always enjoy your letters and the generous spirit in which you serve us. I have learned a lot by your exhange and my spirit is enriched. Sending healing energy in light, with love and appreciation. Carol Ann

From: David Gellatly — Oct 25, 2013

That news just SUCKS! Thanks for being a true art hero to so many of us Robert.

From: pua maunu — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, We artists will hold you and your family up in this difficult time. . .through your twice weekly letters, we have become a community of artists and I feel I know many of the artists that write through their art and words. I have only written once, many years ago, and had the pleasure of painting at the glacier with you in Juneau and Haines Alaska also many years ago. You have been an inspiration and brought us together from all around the world. What will we do without you? You have thoughtfully impacted so many lives. You are in my prayers.

From: Kathy McChesney — Oct 25, 2013

Just read “The Bomb.” I am so sorry for your news. I feel like the bomb hit me personally. Thank you for sharing your story always. My heartfelt thoughts are with you and your family.

From: Janine — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, I’ve been getting your news letters for about 8 years now. I look forward to them. I think I wrote to you once and you responded so quickly; I was surprised. When I read this newsletter I was, of course shocked. We don’t know each other but I feel like you’re a friend. If thousands of positive, loving thoughts and thousands of prayers being said can change the course of things, may they alter the outcome of this prognosis in a miraculous way. Allow them to penetrate and feel the love coming your way. God bless you and your family.

From: Searcy — Oct 25, 2013

My heart breaks for you and your family, which includes all of us, your loving students. I pray they can help you through this. Please know we are wrapping you in God’s love and light through our prayers as well. Just one of your many devoted students… Searcy

From: C Dowell — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, I’m so very sorry to hear of your diagnosis. My thoughts and those of hundreds of others are with you and your family. Thank you so much for your invaluable wisdom. And for sharing yourself so openly. We are all blessed to have been able to take this journey with you. God Bless

From: Brenn Pruet Kunkel — Oct 25, 2013

I have been following you faithfully on email for a number of years, so all in all, we have been close friends … as well as artists. May you enter your new journey with hope and prayer. Continue with your dreams of composition, color and brush strokes, it will give you strength. And as the rest of us paint, we shall keep the faith strong for you, my friend and fellow artist. … Brenn Pruet Kunkel.

From: Aline — Oct 25, 2013

You are such a good person. You have helped so many to understand what art is. Keep positive. ..I don’t know what to say is always throwing curves and it might just go away. ..My good vibes are with you.

From: Pati Burraston — Oct 25, 2013

I am shocked and greatly saddened by your news, and honored by your willingness to share it. Thank you so very much for the years of smiles and wisdom you have brought into my life. You have helped me become a better artist and a better person. I send loving and healing thoughts and prayers to you and your family.

From: Julia Hacker — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, I just sign up for your news letter and I expect for many many more to come. Life is full of miracles and from the bottom of my heart I wish one upon you.

From: Pamela Hobert — Oct 25, 2013

May my prayers and light touch you and add to the love that surrounds you. You have given us so much. You have been a guiding and generous friend -we gather to send love and support your health. thank you! for your wisdom and humor!!

From: Peter Brown — Oct 25, 2013

Very distressing news. There are thousands of your readers right now sending out thoughts toward you and your family. This goes without saying. Yet, I always get concerned when I hear about plans for a bonfire of “inferior” works. Let your family, historians and the marketplace decide the issue. Sketches and drawings and studies are all important. One cannot predict the future.

From: Deb — Oct 25, 2013

Oh – this news hit me in the gut. I can’t tell you how much I enjoy your wise advice which I also share with my students. I am praying for strength for you and comfort for your family. Know that you are in my thoughts and prayers and that I do believe miracles happen every day.

From: Sharon Cory — Oct 25, 2013

I feel just the way I would if this were a family member…. Shocked but hopeful for good news. Take care and love to you and your family

From: Thaine — Oct 25, 2013

I was diagnosed similar… back in the 1980’s. 3 to 6 months. Every now and then, one of us makes it. Love to you and yours.

From: Shirley Fachilla — Oct 25, 2013

My thoughts are with you and your family. I look forward to your letters every Tuesday and Friday. You seem to be handling this in a wonderful and inspiring way. Courage.Shirley Fachilla

From: Bonnie Roberts — Oct 25, 2013

I’ve learned so much from your words of wisdom! As a beginning painter, I didn’t feel brave enough to comment before. Know that my prayers are with you and your family as you begin this new journey and learning experience.

From: Joan Bowers — Oct 25, 2013

I’m a photographer and have been reading and appreciating your letters for the better part of a year. Your news today came as a shock, much like it would feel to be getting this news from a long time friend or a family member. There are survivors, so don’t give up the ship just yet! Peace and hope for you and your family.

From: Debbie Wilson — Oct 25, 2013

All I can say is fight it! They could be wrong. I know of several people who are still with us that would not give in. I truly hope you are one of them. Thought be with you and your family.

From: Richelle Grist — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, I never write anyone. I love your letters. A gift always. Know that all your readers are Wishing you the very best! Every day! Thank you for all your inspiration all these years!

From: Nora Blansett — Oct 25, 2013

I am so very sad to hear the news. Right now your inbox is very likely overflowing with those same words over and over and my prayers and thoughts are but one in thousands — but they are with you and your family none-the-less and shall continue. I don’t have any words that could bring either peace or enlightenment to you in this time, and it saddens me that when I want the words to come pouring forth, they fail me. I have looked forward to your gems appearing in my email box and often saved them to forward to others, share on my website, facebook and twitter. I’m not prepared to lose your insight, artistically and spiritually. However, it’s that very insight you have that you have shared with us without fail, that shall carry you on this unknown path. Wherever the light takes you, travel on with paintbrush in hand.

From: Marion C., Long Island NY — Oct 25, 2013

Thank you for your letters, for sharing. I’ve looked forward to them, enjoying them when I had some quiet time to myself. You’ve touched so many lives. Now concentrate on yourself and your family. Fight, and take care of yourself. Nothing is set in stone. Please keep us up-dated, so many care about you.

From: Marie Pinschmidt — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, I, too, am shocked at your news. Your contribution to the art world as well as struggling artists is immeasurable. Stay positive and keep painting is my prescription. Bless you and your family at this difficult time. I pray you’ll be with us a long time. Marie Pinschmidt

From: Beverly Fish — Oct 25, 2013

I had to reread the news. I am so shocked. Sending you positive thoughts and vibes to you and your family. You are such an inspiration. I love the twice weekly updates but now is the time to take care of yourself and what you need to do. A whole world of artists are rooting for you.

From: melissa — Oct 25, 2013

Your bad news floored me this morning…reading your letters has been such a touchstone in my life for so many years. My thoughts, hopes and prayers are with you. May you be safe and protected, may you be strong and free from pain, may you have peace and joy, and live a life filled with lovingkindness.

From: Jo Ann Nanninga — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, the group of three from Barrhead are holding you and your family in our thoughts and prayers. May you and yours be granted peace and healing.

From: martha — Oct 25, 2013

Robert—-SADDENED BY THE news—-my heart skipped a beat–who will keep us infirmed–as U did with ur knowledge. Lets hope it will be along time U’ll be around–yet.Am at a loss of words.

From: Sally Shea — Oct 25, 2013

May the power of healing be with you & your family.

From: Sandra Vought — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, thank you for taking the time you have for the twice weekly letters. Everyone above has pretty much summed up what I wanted to say. Remember, time is relative and the soul is eternal. I pray for you and your loved ones.

From: Linda — Oct 25, 2013

Cancer is a bitch! I’ve had direct involvement with it 3 times. New discoveries are always being made, so prepare for what you need to prepare, and hope for the best.

From: Barrie Goodwin — Oct 25, 2013

Bob: Prove the doctor’s are wrong and beat it.

From: Delilah — Oct 25, 2013

Robert, Thank you so much for all the help you have given. I had a dear friend in the same situation and she is still here and doing great after 4 years. God bless

From: Kay Christopher — Oct 25, 2013

Dearest Robert, am sorry to hear this news and wish for you all the very best in the coming days. You are such a light and inspiration. If you write we will be so happy to hear from you. If not, please know that the beautiful service you have provided to the world has been extraordinary, profound and significant. Thank you for changing my life in a very meaningful way. I have cherished your words and will always appreciate the wonderful and many gifts I have received from you. You and your family will be in my prayers. Many. many blessings to you now and always.

From: Patti Adams — Oct 25, 2013

Would that I were able to write a Robert Genn missive to lift and inspire you, as you have done for so many of us through the years. Failing that, I will say that there is great power in what you have created among us: we now send that energy back to you, magnified a thousand fold, with love, gratitude and the expectation that you will, through the grace of God, not be leaving this planet anytime soon.

From: Marianne Broome — Oct 25, 2013

Robert Genn. Artist, writer, philosopher and humourist extraordinaire. Every letter from now on will be treasured in a very special way. Your gifts to artists worldwide have been so generous. I wonder if you have any idea of the impact you have had. I, along with so many others, am deeply saddened to hear of your news. We will be thinking of you and your family as you bravely soldier on through these difficult times. Warmest wishes. Marianne

From: nelda — Oct 25, 2013

I hate hearing this. I only just found your blog a few months ago, but I scroll thru my inbox looking for your letter and read it first because it is the best one. I doubt you will ever know just how many lives you have touched with your wonderful writing. Thank you sooo much for sharing. I’m running off to talk to my husband, a cancer researcher, and see what the latest news is. Write to us and share your progress when you feel up to it. We will be here, waiting, listening for your news.

From: Joana — Oct 25, 2013

You continue to inspire me. Thank you. Please know that I am adding my best wishes and positive thoughts to the scores of others who have already written. Joana

From: Lea — Oct 25, 2013

We’ve only met in passing many years ago – Kelowna, Hambleton Galleries & I cherish a painting of yours …. I’m so saddened to read your news, Vancouver is a good place to be for miracles do happen …

From: Kim Carlton — Oct 25, 2013

I love your honesty, always, and the way you share… everything. You lead and teach and inspire us even in this. We will be here for you as you have been here for us, Robert. Hoping and praying and moving toward the same sunset together. Love, Kim.

From: Jane Appleby — Oct 25, 2013

Thank you for always showing courage and the “keys” to so many things that matter. Now with this sad news, I hope to encourage you to take care of yourself and your well being. I too believe in miracles and am praying for you and your family as you undergo all that is ahead of you. Sara my heart goes out to you also as you help your dad, but I trust you will be given the strength you need. I look forward to you writing the letters and believe they too will be fruitful. May healing be upon you Robert and may your days ahead be as beautiful as your paintings. God Bless you! Love, Jane

From: Jan — Oct 25, 2013

I say the same as everyone else – thank you so much for sharing, giving, inspiring, challenging, caring, thinking and being you. A lot of love is coming your way. Believe.

From: Greg Gustafson — Oct 25, 2013

Robert. ride the tide of love that is coming your way from all you have touched. May peace and heightened awareness flood us all.

From: Linda Jolly — Oct 25, 2013

Dear Robert, Thank you for the pages of insights, wisdom, encouragement and humour that you have provided for us over the years. Your letters have given me the courage to carry on when I feel discouraged and to know that there is light at the end of the tunnel. I wish you and your family all the best in this next stage of your journey.

From: Azita — Oct 26, 2013

Don’t give in to a disease. You might overcome cancer. This is my wish for you today.

From: Carol Hama Chang — Oct 26, 2013
From: Jayshree Misra — Oct 26, 2013

Dear Robert, My prayers are with you, and I would like to thank you for the gems you have been sharing these past years. I am so happy I stumbled upon your letters and paintings :) Warm regards, Jayshree

From: Rosemarie Manson — Oct 26, 2013
From: Kim Attwooll — Oct 26, 2013

Dear Robert, your bomb exploded in my soul. You and your wise, witty, insightful and inspirational letters have been such a great part of my world. My students are all shown what a wonderful gift you share and are as excited as I am to read your musings. Please know that you are a treasure to so many people and stay focused on your journey in the most positive of ways. Try to make the most of every moment. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

From: Joanne Larose — Oct 26, 2013

Robert, I am so sad to hear this news. You have shared shared your passion and that has been a true inspiration to me.

From: Alice S. — Oct 26, 2013

So often when we, the cyber-world, subscribe to ongoing newsletters, we don’t remember on a daily basis that there’s actually a person behind the keyboard. A person who lays their soul out there and tries to send a little bit of themselves over the wires, not necessarily to make a bunch of money, but to simply throw some good advice out into the world and make it a better place. Thank you for your desire to share your expertise with all of us whom you’ve never met. I am praying for healing for you and peace for you and your family.

From: Brigitte Nowak — Oct 26, 2013

Robert, Hundreds of people in the community of artists you have fostered have already shared their thoughts, feelings, tears, and hopes for your recovery. There’s nothing I can add, except to say that there is no one else I know who could generate such an outpouring of respect and affection. Thank you for sharing your wisdom, knowledge, experience, expertise and insights. You have given us so much – even in this letter, you are focusing on how to continue the inspirational path you have created for us, not on your own prognosis. I have gained a great deal from your letters; professionally, my work is now in several commercial galleries, beginning to generate a modest return, and continuing to give me pleasure and challenge my creative vision. But more than that, and in particular with your “bomb”, you have reminded me to live and enjoy each day, to not waste time, and to focus on the things that matter. My thoughts are with you and your family; may the good wishes of your extended “cyber-family” help to give you strength and healing.

From: Pam — Oct 26, 2013

Dear Robert, after reading your letters twice a week over the last few years, I think of you as my friend. I’m so sorry to hear about your test results and am praying your recovery. Never give up. You are a wise and inspirational artist. Thank you.

From: Grace — Oct 26, 2013

I am saddened by your news. My prayers are with you and your family for strength and healing.

From: Kim Lawonn — Oct 26, 2013

It is such sad news. I’m praying for you to have many good and wonderful days left on this earth. Enjoy your family and take time to do what you love doing. I have truly enjoyed your letters for some time now. You are an inspiration and share your wisdom well.

From: chrissy harfleet — Oct 26, 2013

I think you are a wonderful person and I treasure your letters, which means I treasure you. Life does sometimes give us a second chance – it did me. much much love to you. chrissy

From: Russ Hogger — Oct 26, 2013

I am saddened by your news Robert, but hang in there, try not to let it get the better of you just yet. Thanks for all those wonderful bi-weekly emails.

From: Noel Marin — Oct 26, 2013

Your gifts will always be on the planet! My feelings have been expressed by all of the writing above. Thoughts of Sara are precious. Thank you so much.

From: Debbie Abshear — Oct 26, 2013

I am so sorry to hear the news of your illness. I recently stumbled upon your website and was so happy to find all of your wisdom provided so freely to artists. You are truly a generous person who I appreciate and admire. Please know you and your family are in my prayers.

From: Andrea Hupke de Palacio — Oct 26, 2013

Dear Robert, twice a week you give us wisdom and smiles, thank you so much for that, like many others, I have been reading your newsletters for several years and I love what you have to say and admire your artwork…I can imagine that this was a real bomb and what you are going through, I wish you strength and courage, and thank you for speaking so frankly about what happens to you! And I wish that you’ll stay with us for much longer. Much love and hugs, Andrea

From: Keith Thirgood — Oct 26, 2013

Most people wonder what to say after hearing such news about a friend or loved one. Mostly, we’re at a loss for words, which makes sense because words are never adequate to the task we ask them to perform in such ocasions. You’ve looked after so many of us, your readers, so well. It’s time you devote your energies to your own. Helen and I wish you and your family well.

From: Bobbie Seright — Oct 26, 2013

Dear Robert, so many things I would wish for you and your family at this time – Strength and courage to walk this road, patience, ease and grace to lighten the way. Thank you for sharing your gifts and wisdom with this amazing community that you have created and nurtured for so many years. I am so very grateful to you.

From: Phoeinx Hawkins — Oct 26, 2013

Robert it is with heartfelt sadness that I read your recent post ” The Bomb.” I am humbled that you have shared your recent heath news with your faithful readers. I have been an avid reader of your bi-weekly posts for about 1.5 years since I heard you speak at the West Vancouver’s Harmony Arts Festival. In this session, you describe many things an artist should do to be successful in their own right. I have taken some of those steps to task. After many years as a commercial artist for the apparel industry, a tattoo artist for years after art college, your talk inspired me to start to learn to paint. I first started with water colors at a local community class, and then entered an annyonnous art show at my local community gallery. Although my painting did not sell, it provided me a lesson in the gallery process, no matter how small. I have stated to go to figure drawing classes to unleash the lines inside me. I intend to take up some oil painting classes in the new year. Your posts have encouraged me to spread your valuable experience with others. I have passed the newsletters on to art teachers and other artists. I have always learned that if you can pass on one thing to someone that inspires them to be better or enriches their lives, you are truly doing a service to them and yourself. You sir, have enriched so many.

From: Corinne Soles — Oct 26, 2013

Along with so many others, I am saddened that anyone so generous of spirit may not be available to us. Selfish, isn’t it? From the moment I first met you (at the FCA, with The Painter’s Keys in hand) through your many inspirational quotes (that I have passed along) to this difficult announcement, I have admired you wholeheartedly. May you be completely enfolded by love every step of your journey. You are in my heart and you will be in my prayers.

From: neil — Oct 26, 2013

We are so sorry to hear about news about your health situation. May you have the grace and strenghth to enjoy every day. Life on earth seems so short. Our spirits are designed to live forever as a result we often don’t want this life to end. God has a wonderful plan for us and the central question is always what have we done with Jesus Christ. That makes all the difference in the life to come.

From: Bobbie Kilpatrick — Oct 26, 2013

Dear Robert, Miracles are real and available to everyone. You have sown love, hope, and goodness to millions and will reap the same to overcome this illness. Only have positive thoughts for the outcome and keep eating healthy for wellness to happen. Thank you for sharing your art, wonderful insight to the artistic life, and humor with your many followers. We are all sending love, strength, and prayers to you for a speedy recovery and to your family for their support. The mind is powerful so BELIEVE in being well. God and your mind are bigger than this disease. NEVER GIVE UP!!

From: Adrianne Moro — Oct 26, 2013

Dear Robert, I´ve been reading your letters for many years, and in spite of the fact that I´ve never met you in person, I consider you as a dear friend. This letter was really a “bomb” for me too and I scarcely can imagine what you´ve been going through .I sincerely hope that you keep your faith and believe that there will be an alternative way to cure this disease.Be aware that many people have been healed by their faith, in spite of the doctor´s opinion. You are a wonderful and special human being,I firmly believe that you will find strength to carry on and get rid of this disease.You know, once you gave me the support that I desperately needed when my grandfather passed away. You wrote me a sensational letter,deeply profound that made me feel a lot better.I am sorry that I don´t have your skills in writing in order to tell you everything I could possibly say to help you, but believe me, from the bottom of my heart, I will be praying for you every day . Love, Adrianne

From: Dana — Oct 26, 2013

Please don’t give up. Look at MD Anderson’s success rate with this type of cancer. I am sure there are other hospitals too. Fight the fight! We are rooting for you!

From: Janice Zindel — Oct 26, 2013

Robert, you and your family are in my prayers. A woman at our church survived several years after a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer, I believe one place she went for treatment was in TX. Research doctors and hospitals/treatment. Meanwhile, we are with you.

From: Alice — Oct 26, 2013

My thanks to you and your many helpful comments over the years. May you and your family grow ever closer and remember do not give up hope. It is what keeps us all reaching for the best of all outcomes.

From: Brian Johnson — Oct 26, 2013

BUGGAH! (Our Kiwi relatives use this to describe the most serious of news). We’ll be thinking of you and hoping this was not a bomb, but just a shot across the bow.

From: Virginia Boulay — Oct 26, 2013

Undoubtedly, this is a very difficult time — I am sure you know, you have much love and respect “out here” not to mention a very large contingent of championing spirits! Throughout my own stumbling artistic journey, your letters have buoyed me. Thoughtful, insightful and punctuated with good giggles, always reminding me how connected we are to one another. I like to think I am a better human (first) and artist (second) for reading your letters and look forward to more.

From: Jay Breese — Oct 26, 2013

I am so sorry. I have read your bi-weekly letters for years. They have inspired me and educated me. I look forward to them. You have enriched the lives of so many people. My Dad was a professor. He said “A teacher’s influence never stops”. Yours never will. My prayers will be with you. I hope you can beat this beast.

From: Nina Maguire — Oct 26, 2013

Your sad news is a wake up call for all of us – not only in going through paintings, etc., that we don’t want to survive us, but to enjoy the fact that we can paint – we never know when that will possibly be taken away from us.

From: Catherine Bender — Oct 26, 2013

Blessings and strength to you, Robert. I personally know two people who lived 10 and 12 years after a pancreatic cancer diagnosis.

From: Karen Wilson — Oct 26, 2013

I’ve never written to you before, but just had to express how sorry I am that you received this news. I have enjoyed and look forward to getting your letters and always make sure i have lots of time to read them fully. As an artist, I always learn something. I would miss them dreadfully if they stopped coming. I myself just found out in Feb that i have 4th stage breast cancer. i’m in chemo right now and feeling fine. i hope that you have the same chance to feel well in whatever time you have. I have had the same family dr for 43 years – where did the time go? – and he has been such a great source of strength for me. I’ve also had the same oncologist for 10 years now and i’m still around! you never know how this will play out. Please don’t be too generous in putting pieces into your “destroy” pile. one thing i’ve learned over the years is that sometimes what we consider the worse paintings are still beautiful to someone else. It breaks my heart to think of any of your work being destroyed but i’m sure you’ll think carefully on this. I have a friend who is an amazing artist who swears that she will have all her paintings that are still in her possession destroyed at the time of her death. i’m trying desperately to stop her from doing this (to no avail so far).

From: Rebecca Friedman — Oct 26, 2013

I am a three time cancer survivor. Three different kinds! I am 61 and healthy. I have my family and my faith and most of all, spirit to fight and be positive. Be well! Rivka PS, they tell me I am too mean to die!

From: Mary Claire Coster — Oct 26, 2013

Thank-you for all your insights. I look forward to many more. look at it as a bump in the road. be positive and paint or what ever makes you feel the best.

From: Clarinel Stamos — Oct 26, 2013

You have thousands of friends who are keeping you in their thoughts and prayers. Couple that with your loving family and dog, you will be as supported as any being has been. Good wishes to you. You can beat this thing.

From: Ginnie Higginbotham — Oct 26, 2013

“it ain’t over ’til it’s over”. +20 year survivor

From: Susan Truex — Oct 26, 2013

I have come to rely on your wisdom and insight as an artist and teacher. You have inspired with your stories and encouraged with your no nonsense approach to life. I can understand you wanting to cull out work that didn’t meet you high standards of acceptance, but you might consider the benefits of abbreviating the “destroy pile”. It is probably healthy to know that none of us are consistently on the top of our game and there is probably great merit to humanizing the process. Murfreesboro, TN

From: Mary McHarg — Oct 26, 2013

You feel like a friend. I look forward to your letters. They are so full of intelligent, down to earth, inspiring and helpfully human information which reaches across the country into my isolated artmaking. Thankyou. Blessings on your continued vibrancy of creative living.

From: Suzy Friedman — Oct 26, 2013

I am aware of a person here with the same diagnosis… He’s about 60 years old, was told the same thing and is still doing well and it’s been about 2 1/2 years! I hope you feel well and continue painting as that’s the best medicine of all.

From: Louise Mellon — Oct 26, 2013

Fight, fight, fight!

From: Brent Lynch — Oct 26, 2013

If anybody I know can prolong the battle and even beat cancer it’s you. This is the good fight and you are a fighter.

From: Madeleine Wood — Oct 26, 2013

You’ve really dropped a bomb this morning, yet have managed to deflect pity with humour and the ever present gem to learn from. Yes, yes, yes, I will get my art inventory in order. No one else is going to know where it all is and I don’t want to leave a mess behind for my daughter (Oh no, I didn’t mean you have, and your daughter is very well trained.) Thank you for telling us, so that we can prepare and reflect and grow more self-sufficient and supportive for the year or more to come. I won’t go on… others will speak, and words don’t always work. But I’m very sad. Okay by you?

From: Michelle Richeson — Oct 26, 2013

Even though I have never met you, your words have been an inspiration in my journey as an artist. I have never deleted a letter since I started receiving them over a year ago.

From: Rebecca Gottesman — Oct 26, 2013

As a creative person, please do not forget who you are as an artist, your creative self and your spirit. It can be a great distraction to your pain, your anxiety, and fears. You may have some of the best work ahead of you to create and share. Keep it simple and remember you are very loved.

From: MONICA — Oct 26, 2013

I feel I know you and Sara personally. You and your family are in my daily prayers. Thank you for all you do.

From: lis piatt — Oct 26, 2013

Dear Robert, I just read your Bomb post. My thoughts are with you and your family. You have giving so much to the world. It is interesting that you are thinking about the furture of your artwork. I too was diagnosed with Cancer in July…I will survive one knows how long. I decided to travel to places that have called to me..I see a picture or postcard and I want to see the other parts of that view. As soon as I was able I traveled to the Alto Adige in Italy and the views have filled my soul. I did some daring things. I spend time with favorite people I try to laugh often. I hope you have excellent care and you are surrounded by wonderful people. You give so much to the world. You are in my thoughts and I invision a full recovery for you.

From: staci vella katsias — Oct 26, 2013

Dear Robert, and Family, I am stunned by how deeply your news has affected me. I have no right to feel this way, we have never even met, so why do I? To your family or gallery assistants: If they ever become available, I am interested in purchasing a small sketch or drawing of yours. I have all of your books, but an original drawing in your hand would mean a lot to me. I have a limited budget, thereby the request for a sketch or something small. I really look forward to hearing from you, and I absolutely am wishing you the VERY BEST. LOVE to you, Staci or

From: Donna — Oct 26, 2013

Dear Robert, I too am stunned and pray for you and your family. You have been a guest in my home twice a week, sharing ideas, provoking me to think beyond, and inspiring me……..especially after a difficult surgery. Thank you for being you….and please know that though we have never met, my warmest thoughts are with you in your darkest times, just as you were with me.

From: Diana McElheran — Oct 26, 2013
From: Chris Moore — Oct 26, 2013

Is there something we can paint for you?

From: Anne Hudec — Oct 26, 2013

Over the years you have touched many lives through your generous spirit and gift of self. In turn, may the good will and good wishes from all those people return to you, and bring you and your family comfort, healing, and strength in the coming year.

From: Guthrie Killebrew — Oct 26, 2013

Dear Robert! I have looked forward to your valued words of wisdom, encouragement and comfort for so long I feel as though I know you well. I value our imaginary friendship beyond most of my real ones. You have been such an inspiration to me, both as an artist and as a woman just trying to be the best person I can be during this life time. Some people come onto our lives, and quietly go…Others stay a while and leave footprints on our hearts…And we are never the same. Not an original thought, but true nevertheless. Thank you and God bless you.

From: Jo Bain — Oct 26, 2013

Dear Robert, At first I felt disbelief! You have been a huge inspiration to me, and I am ashamed that I have had a painting block I haven’t mastered. The main culprit is the big “C”. My husband lost his battle 1 1/2 years ago and I have been in remission since my surgery 2 years ago. With your great attitude, Sara’s devotion to continuing and reprinting your past gems, I will get up to my elbows in paint and give it fits in my neglected studio. You are fighting back and those that admire and respect you should do likewise. Thanks for sharing. I send my prayers and wish you and your family well! Jo

From: Neeman Callender — Oct 26, 2013

Step bravely my friend My Father died from pancreatic cancer

From: Carol Kairis — Oct 26, 2013

Robert, many years ago lives threatening trauma shattered my life. Lying in the road… thinking it would be my last breath…something happened to me. All which fortified my soul ( Isaiah 41: 10). Knowledge of God’s W O R D sustained me. I lost 2/3rd of my blood…no one (doctor’s) expected me to make the- ” n i g h t “. I spent 3 months in the hospital, a year longer in a full lengths cast. Also I was told I would never walk again. Beyond myself…in spite of myself, the 1970’s years (threw faith), leaves me here in 2013. Having worked..& .raised two more beautiful children. I’m thankful for the years. Yet it is the promise of Rev.21:3:-5 which has always spoke to my heart in “H O P E” realized. Open to all who excepts such a “gift” through Christ. For really within our creative works we are bestowed a wonderful honor of saying…& appreciating “Thank you” to our C R E A T O R. And to you dear Robert..thank you too. You rest “gently” in ways of inspiration..dedication..loyalty and h o p e f u l l n e s s! Thank you Robert.

From: Gail Caduff-Nash — Oct 26, 2013

It’s going to take 27 years to read all these! So I will be brief and just send my best energies to aid you in healing and strength. I’ve been reading these ‘letters’ for several years, taking them for granted a bit, but also dropping them into a special e-file for later reading. There have been many great messages here & there among your experiences for me to think about. You can count “teacher” into your many talents and contributions to the world. A droplet at a time spilled into the millions, of artistic waters, offering encouragement to anyone who wants to create, maybe inspiring others to start or restart their efforts. So, despite how encouraged you already sound, I send you encouragement now – to proceed with hearty willfulness and explore whatever avenue might help you regain your health. In the glass half full spirit, maybe you will experience something new in your artistry via this challenge. Be well – I look forward to many more letters.

From: Pat Mulholland — Oct 27, 2013

Robert, I was deeply sorry to hear this health news and quick to set to prayer.

From: Kathryn Wilson — Oct 27, 2013

Oh dear, reading your letter was certainly “the bomb.” From the outpouring of love and hope in all the responses written here, it shows you are cherished and loved the world over. Take heart, your fortitude and strong spirit will shine through! And lastly, as I read your letter all I could think was “he is ill and he is still thinking of his readers.” Thank you for all you’ve done and will do for the art world.

From: Nancy O’Toole — Oct 27, 2013

Dear Robert A bomb for sure! Difficult to believe that a man who has lived to give of himself as much as you have to others, should be given such a blow! Hang in together with all your friends and loved ones! From our house to yours…much love hope and prayers for you and all your family! Having had similar news twice in our family and given basically no hope(3 to 5 months) after 17 years for one and 9 years for the other and both still alive and doing well, we can definitely tell you that there is ALWAYS hope! Keep positive and love each other! Enjoy each day that you have together, be it one day or many thousand days for no one knows for sure what is in store anyway! You have given so much to others, that if these notes to you are any example there are millions of people who love you and are with you every step of the way. And we know that MIRACLES DO HAPPEN!!

From: Lis Choi — Oct 27, 2013

Robert, I casually open your letter to read about this Bomb. Only to read and find myself teary eyed. No, this can’t be happening..says my foolish self. Up till now you are still thinking of us. Dear Robert thank you for everything. I am thankful for having won your book. Whatever will happen will happen. I pray for strength for your loved ones as well as for you…

From: Cuidado — Oct 27, 2013

I am so shocked and saddened to hear of your news. All of the energy you have given to us over the years will be returned to you via prayers and good wishes. Please have hope and open your heart to accept all the prayers and love.

From: Mary Noble — Oct 27, 2013

I admire your wisdom and your paintings. Whenever I go into Toronto to browse the art scene I stop by the Mayberry Gallery to see if I can catch a glimspe of your paintings. Since reading your devastating news it has affected me deeply. Thinking of you and wishing for you the most positive outcome.

From: Ric Nagualero — Oct 27, 2013

Dear Robert, Thank You for all You have given us over the years. I am so sad to hear about your Health… Sending love and prayers your way. Again, thank you

From: Tess Turner — Oct 27, 2013

Dear Robert, Real sad to hear your news. I’ve never written to your blog before but always read your articles and always looked forward to your email in my inbox. You’re an inspiration and a very helpful soul. You’re in my prayers.

From: Paula Dougherty — Oct 27, 2013

Peace to you, Robert. I am hopeful you will recover. Some of us have…from incredible odds.

From: W. Passmore — Oct 27, 2013

Reposting your blogs is a great idea – since even a week after they come out I probably should read them again! So many wise ideas and so inspiring for artists. Glad your daughter can help and so sad to hear your news.

From: Brenda Belfield — Oct 27, 2013

I just read the bomb. I save your letters to read in quiet moments. Now I’m devastated. You are such a “giver”…and sharing this worst experience makes us all feel like a close friend…

From: Jhan Ford — Oct 27, 2013

Thank you Robert for being such an inspiring and loving memory of my childhood. I will always treasure our painting lessons.

From: Gillian — Oct 27, 2013

I have enjoyed receiving your e-mails for many years,you are a joy and inspiration to others, my love and prayers are with you and your family take care.

From: Jean — Oct 27, 2013
From: Cheryl Coville — Oct 27, 2013

I’ve enjoyed your twice-weekly letters for a long time now. So sorry to hear your diagnosis.

From: Ieva — Oct 27, 2013

I wish you quick recovery and looking forward to your letters. They are my wonderful friends – they make me laugh and encourage to paint when it gets tough in the studio. Thank you! Ieva in Luxembourg

From: Catherine — Oct 27, 2013

I’ve known you through these letters for a few years now. You’ve helped me and so many others down the pathway on our journey to an artistic life. Now is the time to step aside. Take time to care for yourself and your loved ones. Let others help you on this journey. You’ve honoured us by confiding in us for a reason. Tell us now how WE can help YOU and your loving family deal with this. Thank you Robert for everything you have given to so many for so long… xo

From: DeborahMRosato — Oct 27, 2013

Robert: As everyone else has said, what a shock. Sometimes life sucks. But maybe you can beat the odds. If not you have provided me as well as many others with inspiration in our artistic endeavors. We will miss you if you loose the battle. But we need to all be positive. Best to you and your family. My bucket list contains a trip to the Bugaboos with your painting group. I guess we shall see.

From: Tracy Wall — Oct 27, 2013

Know that you have inspired me and so many around the world with your thoughts, expertise, and gentle words along side your beautiful work. Best wishes in this battle, and know that you are loved.

From: Jo-Ann Hunt — Oct 27, 2013

dear Mr Genn, know that you are loved, know that you have made a difference, and know that the mighty upswell of desire for you to get better is an awesome force that can carry you over the line. You are amazing, sir.

From: Cheryl — Oct 27, 2013
From: John Stegner — Oct 27, 2013

Robert – Your Twice-Weekly Letters have been a wonderful source of inspiration and enjoyment over the years. I’ve benefited greatly from all the information and advice you provided and regard you as my “Super Mentor.” Thank you so very much. Your job now is to kick the can down the road. You can do it…and everyone is behind you.

From: Monique Rainville — Oct 27, 2013

I am so sad to hear your news. I love your letters . They have educated and entertained me. Thank you so very much for sharing Robert. I wish you strength and courage on this new journey.

From: Lynn Harrison — Oct 27, 2013

Robert, I am so sorry to hear this news, but glad to hear such strength of spirit in your letter. May this next phase of your journey be blessed by joy, peace, love and beauty–all of which you have extended so generously to others.

From: elaine hartley — Oct 27, 2013

You are a friend that has given so much to so many in such a personal way we all feel an incredible closeness to you during this part of your journey. As an artist who has often felt alone, you have changed that for me with your generous sharing of your wisdom. I join all the others in sending love to you and your family.

From: julie ford oliver — Oct 27, 2013

My thoughts go to your beloved family as well as to you, dear Robert. If anyone can change the stats on this type of cancer it is YOU. Not only inspiring us with your art you have now started inspiring us with your openness and courage.

From: Tracy — Oct 27, 2013
From: Darrell Baschak — Oct 27, 2013

Robert, may you and yours find the strength to carry you through this time. I’m pretty shook up over this, hard to find the words. God’s peace on you.

From: Cheryl Moore — Oct 27, 2013

Robert, may the success of your life, the love of your family, friends and fans bring you comfort and strength through the next phase. God bless you!

From: Ann Williams — Oct 27, 2013

Dear Robert ~ I am holding you and your family in my heart. Your words, wisdom, wit and creativity are a big part of my life. Thank you for generously sharing your gifts. My prayers and love are sent now, as always. Wishing you miracles every day, tenderness, joy, beauty, warmth, love and comfort. Your passion is remarkable, Robert. I believe in you always. My best to you, your loved and dear ones ~ Ann

From: Rosemary Mostyn (Western Australia) — Oct 28, 2013

Robert, many of us do not know you in person having never met you but for all of us (I am sure I speak for each and everyone of your fellow artists/subscribers), you have been our inspirational friend in every way. So to hear your devastating news hits our hearts and souls – it is just SO NOT FAIR!! I have most of your weekly news letters on file and refer to them often. From all your Australian artist friends we can only wish you the very best outcome in the coming months of treatment and the loving support of your family and friends.

From: Pam Gowing — Oct 28, 2013

Wishing you peace and joy in every step of this adventure. Blessings to you and your family.

From: Marian — Oct 28, 2013

Dear Robert My friend, I will pray for your second chance, others have had it. Blessing.

From: Beverly Kies — Oct 28, 2013

So sorry to hear this news. I am not one to read “blogs” but I have thoroughly enjoyed yours the last couple of years. I will send positive thoughts your way.

From: Marina — Oct 28, 2013

I have learned so much from you in the few months I have subscribed. Sending you and your family much love, gratitude and positive energy.

From: Linda Kukulski — Oct 28, 2013

Dear, dear Robert, My heart is pounding in my throat and tears are welling up. I had to read your letter over and over until it sunk in. We have been friends for many years and I won’t let you go. I will be thinking of you and praying for you Mr. Genn. You have meant so much to me. You will not have time to go through all these letters, but be sure they are filled with love, admiration, respect, friendship, gratitude and well wishes. Your friend, Linda K.

From: Cindy Quayle — Oct 28, 2013

You have inspired so many with your thoughts, advice and humor through the years and I have always looked forward to your letters. You are strong and positive. People have beat insurmountable odds in the past and you could do the same. Enjoy life and know that you have positively influenced artists worldwide. Thank you

From: Lorrie Shinol — Oct 28, 2013
From: Carrie Berry — Oct 28, 2013

I am so sorry to hear your news. May all go well for you. Best Wishes.

From: Diane Speirs — Oct 28, 2013

I know I will be sharing these same thoughts as countless others in saying that I am shocked & sorry to hear this news. I’ve enjoyed your letters & also having the chance to see & hear you at Painter’s Lodge. I’ve been through cancer & have lost many family members to cancer as well, so I know some of what you are going through. I will have you in my thoughts and hope that more good days than bad, many days to spend with family & friends, and time to do what you need to do for yourself. We’ve learned a lot from you over the years & I’m sure we still have more to learn from you.

From: — Oct 28, 2013

So sorry you and your family are going through this. All good vibes your way. Ann

From: Suzanne — Oct 28, 2013

So sorry to hear this news. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. I pray that God will heal you.

From: Karolina Burghardt — Oct 28, 2013
From: Colleen Underwood — Oct 28, 2013

May you find comfort in the outpouring of love and prayers coming your way.

From: Sue Molloy — Oct 28, 2013

So sad to read this, it has sat with me all week since you wrote it, I wish you and your family peace and strength over the coming months.

From: Jean — Oct 28, 2013

I am shocked to hear this news, just as you must have been. I wish you all the love and luck there is to get through this. My best wishes to your family and all your followers. Thank you for all the messages and beautiful art you have given us.

From: Laura Tovar Dietrick — Oct 28, 2013

Dear Robert, I have just read your news and hardly know what words I can possibly say that might be of some comfort. Although we have never met,you have appeared regularly in my inbox for sometime now, like an old friend always with wise, sage advice. I would like for you to know that your commentary on so many subjects has kept me grounded, encouraged and headed in a good direction. I wish that I could return the encouragment and kindness. All that I can do is to pray for you and your family…God Bless You!

From: Trisha — Oct 28, 2013

Since the day this arrived, I haven’t known what to say ..and still don’t – but I’ve thought about you an awful lot since that day. You’ve often given me ‘light bulb’ moments, given clarity to many things, and generally been a great source of enlightenment & interest. For these things I thank you tenfold. I wish you well, and I hope ..just hope.

From: Suzanne — Oct 28, 2013

This message is as stunning as if you were my personal friend that I have always known because for years I have read your words with joy, relish, anticipation, and hope. Thank you so very much for all you have done for so many. I will hold you in my thoughts. Blessings on you and your family.

From: Cat Fink — Oct 28, 2013
From: Michael Hofstetter — Oct 28, 2013

I have never met you in person but I feel you are a friend.. I am sorry for the bad news. I am sure we all,all these people who you have touched, all these people who share a common interest, feel you are a friend. We all are hoping for the best. You are in our prayers and have been in my thoughts constantly ever since I read the news. You have become a part of my life. Your website has become a digital home and you have made me feel less alone in my studio. I have loved the sharing of others’ works and thoughts.

From: Peggy Carlan — Oct 28, 2013

Robert, My thoughts are with you and your family. You live a very full and meaningful life! Peggy Carlan

From: Jeanine Allen — Oct 28, 2013

Your letters have become a part of my work schedule – inspiring and supportive…you are so wise and funny too! Don’t dare give up – take care of yourself right now and you’ll have a 2nd chance…you are needed and loved. Airdales have the biggest hearts!

From: Susan Holland — Oct 28, 2013
From: Karen Clark — Oct 28, 2013

Your letters have filled our little art centre here in Flin Flon manitoba with amazement that you know what we are all thinking, with awe that you are so knowing and with love since you are so generous and personal. Bless you Mr. Genn you have shared and I am grateful to you.

From: chi stewart — Oct 28, 2013

Whipple proceedure. Long surgery good outcome.

From: Catherine McKinnell — Oct 28, 2013

I added your name (along with my sister’s) for prayers for you at the Shrine of Saint Jude. He is a favorite saint in my family who has interceded for us when one of us is in need. May God bless you and your family during this difficult time. Thank you for the years of inspiration you’ve given to me. I may not be a “good” or “talented” painter but I get great pleasure interacting and at times escaping from this world and life’s challenges with paint, brush and canvas. Hugs and warm smiles – Catherine

From: david coe — Oct 28, 2013

For all you do for others, thank you and good luck.

From: Teyjah Mcaren — Oct 28, 2013

I’m so bummed out by this diagnosis for such an illustrious, learned and kind man who has given so much to all of us. Keep up the good fight despite what the doctors have said there are always exceptions to the rule and miracles do and can happen. Stay strong Robert and you have a wonderful family who will help you through. All the best to you. Generally speaking I’m not the praying sort but I will be sending some your way.

From: Pat Matriscino — Oct 28, 2013

So sorry to hear about your issue Robert….know that your words of advice and your knowledge has been, and will continue to be an inspiration to me and many others. Thanks for all you do to bolster all the rest of us painters. My prayers are with you my friend…you can be assured of that !

From: Linda MacGregor — Oct 28, 2013

Robert: how deeply shocked I was to read “the bomb”. You hold a special place in my heart as you are one whose letters have inspired me to push on when I’ve doubted deeply. May your physicians work tirelessly to help you and may the many prayers sent on your behalf, bear wonderful fruit in your healing.

From: Viv McElgunn-Lieskovsky — Oct 28, 2013

As an artist, I have admired your work for years…you have such a lovely touch with your brushwork. My sister bought one of your pieces over 25 years ago, and I look closely at it every time I visit her, marvelling at your composition and colour selection. Thanks also for your twice weekly emails. I’ve found them to be very inspirational. You’ll be greatly missed.

From: Gaye Garrison — Oct 28, 2013

Dear Robert – Your letters have been such a pleasure and so often deal with the very issue that has frustrated me. Your news shocked and saddened me. You are one of the good guys and we need you to fight the good fight and keep inspiring us with your good humor and common sense. I wish you and your family all the best during this difficult time.

From: Kim Lytle — Oct 28, 2013

Me of all people, rendered speechless …. I have looked forward to and read your emails for years, appreciating your humour and insight. Years ago you sent my your book, I shared it and your newsletter with my daughter. Yours is the only consistent newsletter I have received … it is as welcome in my head as you would be in my home. I share healing energies and wishes for joy in the coming days with you and your family. Peace.

From: Anne Watson Sorensen — Oct 28, 2013

Robert, How my heart aches from the news of your prognosis. You are a gift to artists and humankind, profound in your insights of connecting the hand, heart and soul and the life of the artist. Somehow I know you will rise above the mortal indignities and see and shed new light and wisdom that will continue to inspire us as we all walk beside you on this unplanned diversion. We love you and wish we could give back to you what you have given to me/us so generously for years. What would you have us do? And I love that you would continue this with Sara and an old letter! Always thinking of others. Wow!!!! Thank you…love and prayers, Anne

From: Adriana Guidi — Oct 28, 2013
From: Marcela Strasdas — Oct 28, 2013

I hope you do realize how much you have influenced me/us and how much your letters have meant all these years. So many times, just like magic, it was exactly what I needed to hear that particular day. Thank you for sharing yourself with us. Look after yourself now. My thoughts are and will be with you and your family.

From: Louise Sirtonski — Oct 28, 2013

I discovered your twice-weekly letters about ten years ago, but this is the first time I have commented. Based on that, I am sure that for every person who has written there are many others who have not but are still thinking of you. You are an inspiration. May your generosity to all of us be returned to you many times over, to help you and your family through this. Please keep hope and faith as you explore the options open to you. I wish you the best, and you will be in my thoughts every day.

From: Lisa Chakrabarti — Oct 28, 2013

Dear Robert, I wrote last week but am not sure whether I sent it or managed to lose it. Never mind – I just babbled because that is my initial reaction to shock. Cancer is war. I fought it and am in remission for 5 years with myeloma. It’s hard, but it is survivable. We are all cheering for your winning this and praying. Don’t stop yup our work. My doctors were adamant that I should continue painting, even when I was flat on my back. We know intellectually that art heals: I will tell you practically: it does indeed.

From: Candace Doub — Oct 28, 2013

Don’t give up… doctors don’t know all there is to know. I was told I had a cirrhotic liver (who knows why… I don’t drink… well, rarely!). Then a couple of years ago a scan revealed absolutely nothing was wrong. I take supplements paying particular attention to anti-oxidants and such. Eat lots of colorful vegetables. Pick out an artist’s palette of colorful veggies… the brighter the better… and eat ’em up ~ raw ~ everyday! Do positive visualization exercises… picture that nasty stuff melting away from your body… mind over matter. Above all, know you are loved and admired and being prayed for. He hears those prayers. No human knows how long another will be on this earth. Nothing competes with the power of the human spirit! Prayers for vitality and happiness to you and your family.

From: Kate ramsey — Oct 28, 2013

Dear Robert – Wherever you are going, for sure you will be traveling light, since you have generously shared your incredible talents and gifts with your many students, worldwide. What a legacy! It will rest with us to unselfishly share what we have inherited from you. We are all richer having had your example and guidance. As you can tell, I feel a tremendous loss, but I know you have more to accomplish and I feel it will surpass your wildest dreams! Peace to you! Sincerely, Kate

From: Gabriella MorrisonThe — Oct 28, 2013

The grace which you have consistently demonstrated and exemplified will be your ballast steadying you as you proceed. The variable weathers of a life lived well is something to celebrate and keep anticipating. Many thanks for sharing your journeys.

From: Gena LaCoste — Oct 28, 2013

Robert, Your bomb was indeed atomic, and it’s been scattering schrapnel through my mind ever since it went off last week. My wish is that I could send a fraction of the love, energy, inspiration, joy, and wisdom that you have shared with me over the past dozen or so years that your letters have arrived in my email. If that were possible I am sure your body would rise up, spontaneously recovered this very instant. Though we only met once, in a gallery in Calgary 30 years ago, your news affected me very personally, and I know that there are thousands and thousands of artists all over the world who feel the very same. May you be safe. May you be happy. May you be well.

From: Bob Hamilton-Pennell — Oct 28, 2013

Your voice and work are a gift in my life. Like so many of these hundreds of comments, I can only let you know how I carry you with me in the studio, on hikes in the mountains, in conversations with artist friends… I am grateful for you and hold you in my thoughts.

From: Bindu354 — Oct 28, 2013

Dear Robert I am extremely saddened by your news. I have just lost my mother to cancer and travelled a two year journey with her…you have Sara to walk by your side. Maybe that is the most healing therapy, your children, and other family and friends. I seem to have lost my words because the feeling I want to convey – and which has overwhelmed me – is too intense at the moment. As I live in India I am too far away to give you a tight hug, but I am sending it anyway. And one to Sara… Your letters have been the highlight of my days, and I have sent your contact to many other artist friends over these two years. In the dark days of my mother’s illness they were a balm and helped to take me away to a warm and wonderful place. Thank you for so much sharing and caring. I lost my creativity over this time completely though I continued to paint when I could. Am trying and trying since April to get back to that sacred place, but have not reached even close yet. You have so much joy and peace in your heart, it will surely carry and comfort you. Im sure you will not ever put down your brush..Attending a workshop with you was high up on my wishlist but you are so far and for me it was tough to handle the costs.. I cherish your presence in my life,.

From: Jane Ross — Oct 28, 2013

Dear Robert Genn; DEAR ROBERT GENN, How I have looked forward to reading each and every of your letters; my soul leaps a bit with anticipation each time one of them appears in my email; I wonder what you will say to me in this one. I have enjoyed sending your letters on to others – there is always a special message for me or someone else. Thank you kindly for letting us know; what a gentle strong thing for you to do; a gift. I am so glad for your published works and will treasure them even more now that you have told us. With kindest regards to your family, and with deep appreciation for all you do and are. Sincerely, Jane Ross, Battle River Country Alberta

From: Tony Vander Voet — Oct 28, 2013

My experience with cancer taught me to appreciate the truly important things of life and to ignore anything negative… May you enjoy the love of your family and friends. Accept all the prayers and positive auras sent your way. It all helps! Laugh every day, and remind everyone you’re not finished yet.

From: Karen Bye — Oct 28, 2013

OK, so here’s the deal….As human beings, we get to experience the miracle of this great adventure of life, then, as prescient beings, we get to KNOW that we know, and that it will end. We live in the darkness, and reach toward the light; then as a creative spirit we are forced to record that life’s experience and light. And we do it to touch other people, to live past our finite boundaries. Just LOOK, Robert, at how many you have touched! Thank you for your gifts, your spirit and your life.

From: Carol Rowley — Oct 28, 2013

I am so sorry to hear of this health challenge. Your musings have been valuable, entertaining, sincere, and a pleasure to both read and anticipate. Kindest thoughts and prayers for you and your family. – Carol, Denton, Tx

From: Theresa Heinrichs — Oct 28, 2013

Robert, my husband had a cancer diagnosis five years ago and is still alive and kicking. I so hope and pray that you may have the same fate. Take care.

From: Janie Cohen — Oct 28, 2013
From: Dee — Oct 28, 2013

I have been reading your words for many years. Thank you for your commitment to this project and your timely wisdom. I was saddened to read of your illness and I pray for your healing. I wish you many continued years of painting and writing. Be well Sir!

From: Clare Pazona — Oct 28, 2013

Yes I am shocked and disappointed, that’s selfish me. I will miss your epistles. So much wisdom, so deep a soul. If you haven’t spent time with Randy Pausch, look him up. Although he was a computer professor, he shares much with you. I pray that you receive all the l love, joy, and peace you so richly deserve.

From: Diane Bartz — Oct 28, 2013

Wow just look at how many people have been touched by your insightful letters. Thank you so much. We are all blessed by your life and knowledge.

From: Marvin Humphrey — Oct 28, 2013

Robert, please just know that there is a tremendous amount of love for you out here in the world.

From: Wendy Oppelt — Oct 28, 2013

Hi Robert, We met years ago when Bob Wright, Len Gibbs and myself put together Painters @ Painter’s. I so enjoyed watching you paint and was thrilled to be able to engage in wonderful conversations about art. I sadly received your letter last week (which was only my second ever) informing us all of your diagnosis. Your words of wisdom are truly a beautiful gift for every artist. If I could give you a gift it would be one of healing. My prayers are with you and your family. Art like life is a wonderful journey. From last weeks letter it sounded like you are enjoying time spent reviewing your journey – I hope you will share some of those gems you are finding. I would love to see your field sketches of Lake of the Woods.

From: Janet Sellers — Oct 28, 2013
From: Yvonne Morrish — Oct 28, 2013

Having met you several times through the years, I have always been enthralled with your intellect, wondrous paintings, your lovely family, your dogs, and your love and respect for human kind. I wish you well on your next journey toward beating this disease and as a survivor myself, I know you will do just that. I have a file of your letters going back to the very beginning. I treasure them all.

From: Terry Wynn — Oct 28, 2013

Dear Mr. Genn and Family, I want to add my best wishes to the bubble of support and encouragement expressed by everyone. You have taken the time and given each of us the boosts we needed in your very generous writings. We are all here for you and sending our prayers and support to you and your family, our family from afar.

From: Jeanne Ainslie — Oct 28, 2013

Robert, I’ll always remember visiting you in your studio a few years ago–your kindness and generosity. Keep fighting–miracles happen. You are too loved to leave us now. Jeanne Ainslie White Rock

From: Rhett Regina Owings — Oct 28, 2013

My binder is filled with your wisdom. I get dozens of emails every day, but yours never get deleted unread and most of the time printed for later reference and enjoyment. God hears our prayers and know that on Sunday our entire church congregation sent prayers to the heavens for your recovery. We will continue to do so until you are healed. Be brave and fight for all you can. We love you.

From: Paula Rey — Oct 28, 2013
From: Faye Gordon-Lewis — Oct 28, 2013

Don’t mean to preach, but adrenal problems are usually a result of burning ourselves out. Heavy duty good nutrition and rest can go a long way to prolonging life. My blessings to you. All your fans want you around. Faye Gordon-Lewis

From: Trish Kertes — Oct 28, 2013

Robert, You are a friend that I look forward to visiting with twice a week. I have come to know you and your family quite well over the years. Your wisdom has been a welcome guide for me and your honest views on life and art have inspired me with each letter. I hope that you will find a way to remain active in art and defy the odds. Creating Art for Life, Trish Kertes

From: Mark Blair — Oct 28, 2013

Oh Robert, I was so sad to read the news. I am a country doctor in a little town in Africa, who loves painting. I joined your letter readership about a year ago. You have continuously filled my artistic life with hope and inspiration in this year. Be kind to yourself.

From: Sue Zelko — Oct 28, 2013

Your “bomb” was truly a shock, and I feel as though it came from a close personal friend. While we’ve never met, you have truly influenced and enriched my life as an artist. I only discovered Painter’s Keys and your letters about five years ago, and for five years I have enjoyed finding your messages in my inbox like clockwork. I will miss them, but this isn’t about us out here in the Ethernet. Your life has been a blessing, and will continue to be so to your collectors. Do try M D Anderson in TX – they have an excellent track record. God bless.

From: Bela Fidel — Oct 29, 2013

Since I did not see my name on this long and well deserved list, I assume that my e-mail never reached you. I did want to express my shock at the news as well as admiration for your courage; for your telling us the “bomb” news with such apparent quiet and strength. Please remember two things: doctors are known (not to themselves, for sure) for not knowing everything. And that you have made a difference in many many people’s lives.

From: Linda Way — Oct 29, 2013

With all the love, thanks and good wishes shared in the messages to you, I hope that every ounce of your being is filled with hope and peace knowing how much you’ve inspired and taught us dear friend. Sending positive thoughts and healing wishes!

From: Janet Clark — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Mr. Genn, Your bi-weekly letters have given me encouragement, guidance, and bits of wisdom to ponder for several years. I thank you for teaching me and inspiring me. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family now.

From: Catherine Stock — Oct 29, 2013

I wrote to you a few days ago on my iPad but my letter didn’t seem to get to you. Nevermind, others have expressed my feelings more adequately than I ever could. (I especially loved the Dr Seuss excerpt.) Thank you for being such a kind, generous, thoughtful, insightful, intelligent, and humourous presence in my life. I love your letters. I love you.

From: Nelly van Nieuwenhuijzen — Oct 29, 2013

Always in my early morning i’m reading your letters. I was shocked and realised at the same time that suddenly everybody can get such bad news. You are and will be in my prayers and thoughts. You became part of my life with these letters. Thank you for that. Your art and words are for eternity. Nelly

From: Irene Chaikin — Oct 29, 2013

Irene Chaikin Jerusalem Israel rene Chaikin Oct 25 (4 days ago) to rgenn Dear Robert, My heart is breaking for you. Your twice weekly letters to all of us, brightens up my week. I find this news to be unbelievable. May you find a way to get better, and may you not suffer if you can’t. You have inspired so many of us. Losing you is an overwhelming tragedy. We love you. Irene Chaikin Oct 25 (4 days ago) to rgenn I just looked up pancreatic cancer on the web. I hope you will go to the Mayo Clinic for further treatment, and if any place can help you, I would think that Mayo Clinic will do its best. Love, Irene Chaikin Jerusalem Israel Irene Chaikin 11:00 AM (23 hours ago) to rgenn Dear Robert Attached to this email, is the prayer for your recovery that will be put in the Western Wall, for G-d to read. Let’s hope this will make you well. Love, Irene Chaikin Jerusalem Israel May the One who blessed our ancestors.doc May the One who blessed our ancestors.doc 24K View Download

From: Sharon Urdahl — Oct 29, 2013
From: Irene Chaikin — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert The prayer for your recovery was tucked in the Western Wall for G-d to read and respond by sending you a speedy recovery. May the One who blessed our ancestors- Patriarchs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob Matriarchs Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel and Leah Bless and heal the one who is ill Robert Genn, artist and teacher May the Holy One Overflow with compassion upon him To restore him To heal him To strengthen him To enliven him, speedily, A complete healing

From: vonnie — Oct 29, 2013

Bad news – You, of all people, really deserve (as they say). to die of old age.

From: Barbara — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, our friend and mentor. I also read your bomb newsletter with a feeling of horror. How could this happen to someone who I had assumed would always be there for me in my lifetime. What a selfish assumption. But you have over the years become a rock to lean on, your letters always providing insight, help, guidance, laughter and many times a kick up the pants as dust settles on unfinished work. But after reading the many posts above I realise there is so much more to this than I could have believed possible. Faith is the thread. Faith that your personality will take you through and hope that your faith will take the rest of us with you. Your news is like a fragile seed head waving in the wind and dispersing seeds that are touching your friends around the world. I am truly inspired by what I have read and thank you from the bottom of my heart. My love goes out to you and your family and of course to Dorothy

From: Morgan Golladay — Oct 29, 2013

I remember seeing a small exhibit of “modern” art in a small shopping center in Western Maryland around 1970. Each piece featured dissected and distressed dolls, and a lot of red paint. The violence of that show has stayed with me for over 40 years. The point I’m making is that Art has the power to speak to us, to our memory, to our consciousness, to our conscience. While this show was a statement about the war in Vietnam, it was not a transient thought on his part. He put a great deal of emotion into his work; so much so, that I still remember it after all these years. We, as artists, are fortunate kin. We impact and influence our viewers in wash we do not intend or understand. Regardless of the message received, we STILL speak, across year, across backgrounds, across cultures. And long after we move on, our message continues through the people we have touched through our work. Regardless of what our individual futures hold, our voices continue to be heard, and our message lives on.

From: Debra Keirce — Oct 29, 2013

You have enriched so many people and will always be a part of the consciousness we all share. I hope my legacy will be as powerful as yours someday, but I know I have a lot of work to do on it before it even comes close!

From: Deborah Mores — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, Prayers of healing to you from me. I have loved your letters for some years now. I second Candace’s and Sharon’s notes. I am a 5 year survivor of stage 2 breast cancer and it can be done–I did a mix of western medicine and natural (Meditation, no sugar, lots of art, laughing, medical mushrooms and the ayurvedics-organic tumeric and amalaki) got me through. Also, a whole new bunch of sweet friends entered my life who were either care-givers or patients. The important thing is to do is what you feel in your own heart and then go for it wholeheartedly!

From: Helen Harris — Oct 29, 2013

I had taken a moment to read your letter as a break from my care giving to my partner who has just begun her journey with chemo and uterine cancer. Shock, denial ,upset…compassion and all the emotions a soul can express were felt as I came to the end of that letter….then I painted. Through out that long night I let your words, from so many letters ,guide my brush. Thank you for all that you have shared and will still share with so many of us who care about you & your family.

From: Vincent D. Whitehead — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, I have been reading your commentaries for a couple of years now. I have always enjoyed the insight and unique look at the topics you bring up. I was floored at your announcement of with your health. I wish to tell you that I have appreciated your notes and your work. The video shorts of you painting have and will serve to inspire me to get out more, enjoy more and work more. Thank you and God Bless…

From: Karin E Weiss — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert and Sara: I join the multitude of folk here to reiterate how your news hit me like a punch in the gut. Although I have only been following your posts for about two years, they (and yourself) have become one of my “favorite things” that I await at my computer. Selfishly, I feel a personal sense of loss at those wonderful wise missives ending. But yours is the third such ‘computer-related’ loss I am experiencing this year. One, even more personal to me, a dear lifelong friend is currently authoring her own Caring Bridge site as she prepares for her final passage from metatstatic bone cancer. And the founder of an extremely popular internet “university” for the art of quilting (my personal specialty) died suddenly of the same thing and left her husband to continue administrating the site so that the hundreds of students could finish their projects before the school closes end of this year. We become very attached to you mentors and come to think of you as personal friends… But I tell you this not to bemoan my sadness, but to say that what folks like yourself seem to be gifting us in this world are important lessons on how to die with dignity and purpose and a sense of completion. Thank you so very very much! I shall continue to look forward to Sara’s missives and to 27 years more of your own, Robert. By that time I will have reached my centennial birthday, exactly 100! Arghhh! With all good cheer and best blessings. May you retain your peace of mind as you make your preparations for whatever is to follow. ~Karin Weiss in Minnesota.

From: anon — Oct 29, 2013

Perhaps your “letters” will become a greater legacy. God bless.

From: Lynn — Oct 29, 2013

I have appreciated your wit and wisdom (and invaluable art advice) so much in these past few years of receiving your newsletter. I’ve thought of you frequently since reading your ‘bomb’ announcement and sincerely hope your remaining time might be much longer than projected, and that the cancer might become just a small part of your life. At our age/stage, Red Green’s wisdom has a bearing: we are all dying, it’s just a question whether any one of us is ahead of schedule, on schedule, or behind schedule. I’m hoping the medical crystal ball is off kilter and you’ll be one of us who is behind schedule. You will be so sorely missed despite your continuation through your written words and paintings.

From: — Oct 29, 2013

I was in Namibia when I read ‘the Bomb’ and I was shocked and sadden to the core. I believed you to be immortal, I guess. Your notice was so brave that it gave me comfort. To need comfort, when it is you and your family that will be changing? I feel like a part of your larger family and I too, will be changing. Thank you for our walks together in the artists’ way.

From: David Leverett — Oct 29, 2013

Robert, I have been an artist for a long time. I was told about your site and have enjoyed it for a few months now. My prayers are with you and your family that all will turn out the way God has it planed. This last post was one of the best so far and thank you again for information that you give to all.

From: Kristina Maus — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert. I am among the many artists who have been inspired by your letters and your work, look forward to the twice weekly and thank you so very much for sharing your ideas with us. My immigrant Lithuanian Mother was a thoughtful woman and became a librarian here in Canada. She wrote me a note (in LIthuanian) on the title page of a book of short essays, Sitting on the Curb, by Kay Tew Marshall of Paris, Ontario. It was published posthumously by Kay’s friends and fans and I have my copy out. I quote as best I can: ” Kristut, a person does not die when he leaves his thoughts for those who follow…” You live on in your inspirations to others. Know that you will continue to inspire, wherever your road takes you. I send loving intentions to you for the journey that lies ahead. Thank you, Robert, and fair winds!

From: Susan DiPuma — Oct 29, 2013
From: Deborah Reeves — Oct 29, 2013
From: David Zuck — Oct 29, 2013
From: Barbara Harrison — Oct 29, 2013

Thank you for sharing what is surely one of life’s most intimate situations. We are all sending you strength and courage.

From: Jeanean Songco Martin — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, family & staff, Your website and letters have been so inspirational over the years. I have referred countless people to you namely because of the great resource for information but also your wisdom and philosophy of life as a painter is a wellspring for inspiration. We are all fortunate to be on this earth as painters as “keepers of the keys”. We will all leave a legacy of love and passion in our work for posterity. This in itself is such a priviledge to be part of the great circle of art. Our journey is amazing and it will continue on. My heart and thoughts are with you. I do believe in miracles and I do believe in keeping a positive outlook in every situation. Sincerely, Jeanean

From: Joan Thompson — Oct 29, 2013

My thoughts and prayers are with you and family.

From: Christiane Tsouo-Harvey — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, my heart feels heavy reading the “bomb” I have been reading your newsletters for the last 15 years at least… As you, I had a 20% chance of survival after learning I had Ovarian cancer 15 years ago. I am still here and you may still be with us for a long time. Don’t give up! We are eternal. Love, hug and light always

From: eleanor steffen — Oct 29, 2013

for the first time in 10 years,i could not access your letter about 2 weeks ago , and my emotions warned me that you were ill. with relief, i got all caught up again with my genn fix and still am in shock and sadness over the bomb. i am the same age and your verbal reporting of how you are handling this is just as inspirational as the art talk. thankyou for the many gifts you have given me over the years.

From: Mary Jo Hull — Oct 29, 2013

Robert, Hold your Light. MJ

From: Dala — Oct 29, 2013
From: Jeanette Luchese — Oct 29, 2013

Robert, your news is truly a bomb, vibrating in my head the unfairness of it all. Your words have inspired me over the course of time and I am so very grateful and look forward to hearing from you again. I believe in miracles my friend and send you my love and prayers that solutions are found to ensure you are with us for many, many years to come. Kindest Regards, Jeanette.

From: Janine — Oct 29, 2013

“A Place and a Time” I enjoyed your letter today. It reminded me of a thought I had once: that you can never throw a stone away. You can try, but it will eventually go right back where it came from.

From: Carla Mazzone — Oct 29, 2013
From: Candy Crawford Day — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, as evidenced here, you are a most beloved part of our lives and a giant swell of love and support are flowing to you and your family. I hope you will use that wonderful energy to heal and feel happiness even in this time of trial. Know that you are being lifted up by thousands who are grateful for your art, your words and your inspiration!

From: Painterdee — Oct 29, 2013

I have enjoyed your gift of writing and appreciate the years you have shared with us. I saw the title of your post and knew immediately that it was not good news. But Robert, sometimes it all comes down to just a hard shakedown of faith. We are ALL only passing through this life afterall. It’s nice that our art will continue to remind others that we were here. But you are still with us and so, God is not finished with you! I’m praying for this turn in your journey here. I pray that you will find new discovery in your spiritual life. You have made a huge footprint here already with your thoughtful letters and beautiful art. I thank you SO much for that…for being brave to step out and share your gifts for all of us, even into this electronic age…(it all takes courage doesn’t it? even lifting up a paint brush!) So, I have faith that you will be courageous in facing this new avenue (or alley way). Bad things happen to good people….buts its all how we handle it. Our attitide and faith is what it all boils down to. I think you’ve got this! You are in my thoughts and prayers, Dee

From: sandra krupp — Oct 29, 2013

You live and will continue to live not only in your paintings, but in the minds, hearts and paintings of all the people you have touched with your words. You have indeed created a virtual, yet actual community of like minded souls. May this knowledge bring you strength and peace.

From: Zena Weldon — Oct 29, 2013

Sometimes one of us is given an estimate of the end of our life in a body. It is my experience and belief that the estimate may or may not come true, that none of us knows the future, that we are left with living each moment as we believe is best. That’s what we do, our best in each moment, however that appears. Best moments to you. I am honored to have you connected to my life now and in each moment.

From: Angie Hill — Oct 29, 2013

I love you, Robert! I wish for you a blessed journey, however it may be.

From: Fran Steinmark — Oct 29, 2013

You communicated about the “bomb” with the same honest, upright, and giving character that has come across every one of your emails. Your body may be facing a challenge, but your spirit is steadfastly strong and as wonderful as ever. Heal well.

From: Sandra Burns — Oct 29, 2013

If I could utter magic words that would heal, I would speak them to you. Know that you are important to us and we’ll pray for the remission of your cancer.

From: Charlotta — Oct 29, 2013

I just don´t know what to say, and I want to say something nice and that is full of thanks to you for you giving so much. Although I haven´t recieved your letters for more than a year, they have been of tremendous help and encouragement in my beginners journey into becoming an artist! My father was an artist and he passed away too early. When I found your letters it was like hearing him again- I cannot give any higher praise ! I have also gone though cancer and know that the thought of family is the hardest- I do hope you and your family will find to talk and to share your love! I am sorry I cannot express properly what I want to say, not having english as a first language. But I really want you to know what a great help and support you have been, and I do hope that the times that lie ahead, even when they are cruel and unfair, still are painless and peaceful and loving (and that medicine will find a good cure!). Thank you so very much. Charlotta

From: Martha Ginn — Oct 29, 2013

I feel a certain kinship because our names are pronounced the same even though spelled differently. I am sorry to read of your diagnosis and send prayers of support to you AND your family. Toward the end of my husband’s 10-year battle with Parkinson’s, he said he didn’t think he would be here much longer. He was sitting in his wheel chair, and as I stood in front of him, I asked him, “if you knew this was your last day, is there something special you want to do.” He thought for a moment and then spread his arms out toward me; I walked into his arms and said, “you just want to hug me, don’t you?” It has been a wonderful and comforting reminder of the years of love and care we enjoyed together. My art (art quilts using thread for my “paint” and fabric for my “canvas”) was and still is an expression of the blessings of my life. Martha Ginn Hattiesburg, MS

From: Dianne — Oct 29, 2013

Robert;so sorry to hear your tragic news. As a “new” artist, your site was recommended by my painting instructor who knew that I would gain inspiration and knowledge from your newsletters and I have. What a fantastic legacy you leave us! In the meantime, God works in wonderful ways..we just have to believe. I am praying for you.

From: jan kuschner — Oct 29, 2013

dear Robert, as far as I know we do not have expiration dates stamped on the bottoms of our feet. I know you will beat this horrible disease and will bless us with your letters and wisdom for many years to come. Meanwhile, am sending you lots of hugs. Kansas Jan

From: Linda Hobley — Oct 29, 2013

I have shared many of your insights with other artist friends and family over the years, I treasure your book and look forward to the twice weeklies. I have seen you at openings in Canada House and spoken with you there, but although I don’t know you personally, I feel that I do. Life is short, but it is oh so sweet when you know how to live it, as you do. And yes, you are immortal.

From: betse schaap — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, Shell shocked I was when opening your last Friday mail. I have been reading your mails weekly for years and yours are the ones I truely cherish. Your enthusiasm, humor, vision, grasp of knowledge spirituality and the ocassional roar, your down to earth wisdom,your love and devotion to art have opened endless windows of value for me, as to thousands of your followers. I felt like I was going to loose a friend. But as the light and shadows of life change eternally, let us hope your unique light will manifest much longer. Wishing you and your family strength and love.

From: Paul Guliov — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert and Family While I have never met you, unfortunately, nevertheless I feel a special bond, a special link has grown between us. I look forward, each week, to reading your letters. They have become an important key for opening up my thoughts toward my art and the way I see the world. I don’t necessarily always agree on all matters but even they are important facets of the whole process. I will sorely miss your letters and the knowledge that you will be there with another one next week. Alas, no more. I will miss you and your wisdom but at the same time you will always be there in our thoughts and in how they affect us. Thank you for that profound gift. What you are and what you’ve done will never change and will never disappear. They will drift for eternity throughout the cosmos and one day,, who knows. Adios my friend

From: Mien Greyling — Oct 29, 2013

I am deeply saddened by the news. I’ve been receiving the news letters for many years, and it has always been an inspiration to read.All the best for the road ahead. From the other side of the globe – South Africa

From: Valerie Rogers — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, so very sorry to hear your upsetting news. Sending you prayers for a swift and complete healing. Thank you for the generous way that you share your art, insights and challenges. Best wishes for the recovery of great health. Please find the way to believe that you have the ablility to reclaim your health…and then let your body do the job it is made to do..heal. All the very best.

From: Donna C. Veeder — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert. I am stunned and also sorry to hear of a fellow artist with this problem. I have a friend who has had it for 5 years and is still in their kicking yet. She is 88! Who knows how you will do? I think that doctors tell us the very worst scenario first. They do not want to be blamed for not telling the truth. SO, some people might live for one year and others might live much longer. A lot of it depends on the stamina of the person and the will to live. So, do not just accept the one year sentence. It could be longer. That is a statistic. You are not a statistic; you are a human being with a lot to live for. Who knows? Love, Donna Veeder, fellow artist.

From: Eileen Durand — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, It seems I know you from your newsletters….This is quite a sad news you shared with your devoted readers. I am sending you waves of love, light and serenity in this trying period. I hope and pray for the best for you and your family.

From: cmajor — Oct 29, 2013

I only recently discovered your mailing list–and just in the past month or two that I have rec’d your letters I find it amazing that you seem to be reading my mind with your very thoughtful topics. Then to see “the bomb” land in my email–ugh. I can’t thank you enough for everything you give to the art community. Don’t lose hope, and best wishes to you and your family.

From: John Mix — Oct 29, 2013

“The bomb” pierced through a global creative community with harshness as cold as winter. I hope you beat this, Robert. Know you are loved more than words can say. Your dedication to the best that we can all be and create is unmatched and sets a standard that will stand the test of time. It’s trite but we all get one day at a time. May we live, create, and share like we know it! You are in my prayers.

From: Helen Nagel — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers. Keep it up with that juicer! Rest lots. You are a huge spirit and give much joy to many. The world you work to create is beautiful and wonderful. Thank you for your gifts to us all. May you stay with us on this side much much longer. with wellness prayers, Helen

From: Jeanne Kollee — Oct 29, 2013

Very sad to hear the news. Robert, you have been very inspirational to many people, not only with creative ideas, but practical and life skills as well. Conversations that made sense and some that made you think about one shelf. My studio mate also had cancer and she was a revelation and inspired the rest of her studio mates to forge ahead and never stop being yourself and loving life. All us artistes in Lethbridge Alberta, wish you all the best and a hopeful outcome.

From: lynda kelly — Oct 29, 2013

Dearest Robert and Family, As I read all the letters of love, support and encouragement that have been written, my heart wells and tears flow. Such beautiful words and feeling have been expressed here. You have given so much to all of us and it is coming back to you full circle. I can’t help thinking that all of this energy will be healing and that you will come through this. Miracles happen and I believe that you will be one of them! Imagine a beautiful white healing light travelling through your body and healing all that needs to be healed. In gratitude for all of your inspiration!

From: Murella Bosse — Oct 29, 2013

I’m so sorry for you and your family and for the art world and for all of us who have had some contact with you, even if only through your newsletters. I’ve never written you or submitted a painting. Perhaps I’ve thought it had all already been said or painted. But I want you to know that I wish I had the perfect words and pictures to say what needs to be said. I don’t know what to say except that I don’t know what to say, but my prayers and thoughts are with you and your family. Murella

From: Amy Mann — Oct 29, 2013

I’m so sorry about your illness, Robert. I wish you prolonged health and productivity, which equals happiness. When I mentioned to my son that you were destroying your not-up-to-snuff work, he said you shouldn’t, because, “what if he was the next Van Gogh?” In other words, maybe it isn’t up to us to judge what to leave behind…

From: Jan Ammons — Oct 29, 2013

Hello Robert, I have read your writings for many months, sending some of them to my son who is now living in Denmark. Though he is not working as an artist, many of your subjects applied directly to him. This year, starting Feb. 2013, I have endured 2 serious surgeries and many procedures. You might think, ‘So what?’ During one surgery and one procedure, there were a total of 6 occasions of my having Cardiac Arrest. Thinking of it all, I am impressed that when it is time to go, it is time. And, it just has not been my time, yet. Maybe there is still more for you to do. You do have a bit of time. Maybe something you have never seen or done….totally unrelated to your art. Make this time count for you and find ways to enjoy as many things as possible! You are already impressed in my mind and thoughts and prayers. Sincerely Jan Ammons New Braunfels, Tx 78130

From: Lokelani — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert: I don’t remember when I happened on your newsletter and started receiving it on a regular basis, but it has been such a long time. Long enough that I look forward to each and every post. Your posts have encouraged me in my art and “colored” my life in so many ways. So very sorry to hear about your “bomb.” What can one say except – you are in my thoughts and prayers. May God’s choicest blessings be on you and yours.

From: Nancy Vandenberg — Oct 29, 2013

Do not like your news but you do make me look at how I spend my life, after all, we are all going to leave some day! But not right now! I also believe art is immortal and we create it but that it does not belong to us. It is created through us. In my opinion. Not my original idea but I do agree with the ancients. Thank you for helping me get out of the way and pursue my art. Off to painting class at 1 today – there will be 6 person hug coming your way between 1 and 5 every Tuesday. You have given so much of your self, shared so much of your art. What a fine example of a humane being you are. Prayers and love, N

From: Carol Anderson — Oct 29, 2013
From: Gail McNally — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, Thank you for sharing so generously of yourself. May you draw strength from all the positive energies that are being sent to you. Wishing you and your family hope, healing, peace, love and miracles. Best Regards, Gail

From: Deborah Putman — Oct 29, 2013

Hello Robert Thought about you yesterday in gratitude for much that you have shared over the years. Awakened today to discover the shocking news of your health challenge. Sending healing thoughts, strength and love to you and all the family.

From: A. Stevenson — Oct 29, 2013

I wish you all the best, Robert. Your words over the last few years that I have been receiving them have been inspirational and supportive, and will also be a legacy to those you have touched. I hope you will be around to share many more insights with us, but know that those you have already shared will live on long after all our natural lifespans. As you noted in a more recent letter, art is immortal. Words of wisdom are, too. Creativity enhances the human experience, and you have made no small contribution.

From: Bev Simonson — Oct 29, 2013

Robert, don’t give up. I have an acquaintance in his seventies who also had pancreatic cancer. He fought it and is alive and going strong. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

From: Merrie Ligon — Oct 29, 2013

Robert – Life – like art – presents its own difficulties… we all learn this eventually. The outpouring of messages eloquent from your readers must assure you of the endless love and appreciation we have all gladly accepted from you. I wish I had the right words to make this diagnosis dissolve, but be assured that my positive thoughts and wishes are with you and your family. Keep that wonderful sense of humor close and know that droves of your fans are pulling for your triumphant return!

From: Inge — Oct 29, 2013

Robert I’ve been enjoying your insiteful and informative newsletters tremendously and am deeply saddened by your news. But life often gives us a second chance and this might be yours. Keep positive and keep painting your wonderful works of art. With affection, Inge

From: Susan C. Woodward — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, I’ve only had the pleasure of your newsletters for the past two years and am so sorry to hear your news. Somehow I missed “The Bomb” on the 25th and have just read it this morning. Having weathered two occurrences of breast cancer and knowing it may be lurking somewhere to attack again, I fully understand the mix of emotions that come from news like this. I think, though, that you will be fine, no matter what. Your letters may be about art, but they are also, so much, about life, wonder, enthusiasm, curiosity – all the things that make life wonderful. I will be holding thoughts of you in my heart and looking forward to years of letters to come from you and Sara.

From: Peter Reider — Oct 29, 2013

In 5 years of reading twice a week, I’ve never responded. Now I simply have to be part of this chain. As I reach for the 2 fingers of what shall henceforth be known as “Bugabooze”, I promise to respond again, say…5 years from now. Here’s to you Robert, cheers!!

From: Nanne Binghi Barkdull — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, Have been reading your newsletter now going back 8 years, and have appreciated so much your degree of sharing your life, adventures, and spirit in painting. I will keep you, and your family, in my prayers during this time, for your recovery and healing. Bless.

From: christine holzschuh — Oct 29, 2013

You don’t need more words…it has all been eloquently expressed, but in my heart, I am feeling your situation and sending prayers of hope and joy to you.

From: Cristina Scotti — Oct 29, 2013

Even when I’m just one of you numerous faceless fans in cyber space, I’ve started to see you as a friend through your inspiring Twice Weekly letters. I’ll be forever grateful for them and the inspiration and insight they gave me. When I received your “bomb” letter, I found myself reading it once and again, my eyes tearing, expecting a “got you” somewhere. All I know is that your letters and your art will live forever and you with them. Now, I’ll be waiting for a miracle and a “got you” letter from you. My best for you. Cristina Scotti

From: Jane Herrick — Oct 29, 2013
From: Robert Bissett — Oct 29, 2013
From: Adriana Guidi — Oct 29, 2013
From: Pennsylvania Girl — Oct 29, 2013

I met a friend this week and noticed how radiant she looked on this day. I said casually, Joanne, you look great! She said to me, Oh, yes, I feel much better. What do you mean I said, Didn’t you know? She said, I had Pancreatic Cancer last year. What? I said, as I did not know. Do you remember last year when I did not look so great? No reply- as she always had a smile and looked terrific anyway. Yes, she went on, I had it last year and was really sick. Now I am recovered and doing well. How did you do it I asked, as I know the usual outcome of such a diagnosis. Prayers, she said, it is a miracle. So what I am saying Robert, is the doctor’s have to tell you the truth, but there is another truth outside of medicine, a long held belief that we are connected to an eternal God who has the gift of life and restoration and is generous enough to share it. As a very loved brother, hold on, seek God’s healing and belong to him. You are in our hearts.

From: Janice Muir — Oct 29, 2013

Robert, You have enriched my life both artistically and personally. I have enjoyed our e-travels together. Blessings and positive energy are sent to you and your family.

From: Mary Adams — Oct 29, 2013
From: Heather Hanan — Oct 29, 2013

You are such a generous person. Thank you for these always entertaining and often enlightening essays.

From: Sandra Foreman — Oct 29, 2013

Reading your comments over the years has fired a spot in my soul to dig deep down and find those feelings you’ve talked about over the years. From watercolour to acrylic, I have you to thank so much for helping me find the diamond deep down that fills the canvas with my joy. I heard you speak at the Shatford Centre and was so inspired. I met your daughter and your dog and felt like you were family…you were both so warm and willing to share. Blessings to you as you journey through, as my daughter says, “the club that no one wants to belong to”.

From: deb jedynak — Oct 29, 2013

Hi Robert, started receiving the newsletters a couple of years ago and I want you to know I think it took courage to tell us your extended family the news of your diagnosis. I do believe God’s healing power is strong and that he will bestow his healing power upon you

From: Reeni Pardy — Oct 29, 2013

After wiping the tears away I circled the house to release the tension of the shock. Then I stood on the back deck and sang a song of hope and healing for you, breathing, sending love across the sky. I thank you for the gift you have given me(all of us)of seeing and diving deeper into (my own) art, not waiting for the ‘right’ time, but often stealing it out of the mundane everyday. May love and healing flow through you.

From: miss_peggy_artist — Oct 29, 2013

Sending you prayers for healing and strength and as much happiness as you can continue to find – painting when you can. Have enjoyed your newsletters so very much. Best wishes.

From: Revelle Hamilton — Oct 29, 2013

You are in my thoughts and prayers. I never miss reading your letters and have your books, Robert. Sending you Love and Light.

From: Paul Kelley — Oct 29, 2013

Robert, Death, or impending death is certainly nothing to make light of; but after the initial shock wears off, it’s important to try to keep a sense of humor. You can’t take things too seriously because life is too short. In that vein, I include the following: “I went to the doctor and he told me I was very sick and had 1 year to live. I was definitely upset and I didn’t pay him, so he gave me another year.” God bless you and help you through this ordeal. With much respect, Paul Kelley Decatur, IL, USA

From: Peter Scott — Oct 29, 2013

I’m sorry to hear of your illness Robert and encourage you to never give up. I was born with an extremely rare connective tissue disease wich warped the cornea of one eye, I continued to paint with one eye tied behind my back and lived thru open heart surgery when i was told I probably would”nt. I have looked eternity in the eye twice and came out smiling. ‘when in doubt don’t check out” Keep painting and add apples and a beet to your juice. Good luck.

From: Jennifer Cocke — Oct 29, 2013
From: Michelle Basic Hendry — Oct 29, 2013

I think by now you know you and your family have thousands standing behind you. Just thought I’d add one more. You have a legacy far greater than just canvas. Strength and best wishes.

From: Rhiannon — Oct 29, 2013

Robert, You precious, beautiful man. I am singing something that goes with painting, flowers, Hollyhock and a huge bowl of sound that surrounds you with love. Rhiannon

From: Donna Underwood — Oct 29, 2013

Robert, It saddens me to hear your news. I love your newsletter and you are family to me. It’s like you visit me for tea when your newsletter comes. All my love and prayers for a recovery. Miracles do happen.

From: Jane Hinrichs — Oct 29, 2013
From: Wendy Ervin — Oct 29, 2013

I am so sorry to read about your “bomb”…the worst news ever. I have loved reading your newsletters with the great insights, instruction, encouragement, hilarity, humility on the journey of art. Thank you for writing to us far-flung artists so faithfully and keep fighting and living and walking in love!

From: Delilah — Oct 29, 2013

You are so blessed to have the support of so many friends many as myself who have never met you in person just a cyber friend/artist who feels connected. If you turn orange from all the carrot juice please send a click back photo for us.( Hope that put a smile on your face.) Hugs

From: Mary Ann Guliov — Oct 29, 2013

“The Bomb” upended my own miniscule corner of the art world too, Robert. I cried not only for your own shock and pain that only such spirit-wrenching news would bring for you…but also for the overwhelming feeling I had that a very special member of my own family was in trouble! Your amazing ability to share your soul with strangers all over the world through your letters has done infinitely more than just pass on information. They are gifts that gather and link us to you like family. You offer a part of yourself so generously, wisely and unassumingly. I’ve travelled the world with you , gotten to know you and your family and even your dog…and I’ve come to love you all. All I can offer you in return is my heartfelt thanks, my prayers for more quality time on earth for you and the positive thoughts and Reiki which I send to you each day. It’s not much but it comes from my heart and with the warmth of familial love. Mary Ann

From: Michelle Austen — Oct 29, 2013

Based on the outpouring you have supported many in their lives and artistic journey. I have been blessed to receive your teaching and look forward to lots more newsletters. Paint on! Go to your room! your words resonate with so many, your turn to receive much deserved support. Sending you and your family Gobstopping magnitudes of light!!

From: Teresa Johnson — Oct 29, 2013

Robert, what a blessing you are to the world. Your generosity in sharing your art, thoughts , insights and valuable lessons both in art and in life truly shows the wonderful character of you. I too am just one of the thousands that read your mail, but you make us all feel like we are your friend. What a valuable gift to mankind, that through your art and your words you leave us all feeling connected. God Bless you and more prayers coming your way for your healing.

From: Carol Allen Anfinsen — Oct 29, 2013

I’m in awe of your courage. A friend at my church had pancreatic cancer. After two years, he is doing well. Norm sought out treatment from the best. He’s still with us. God bless you!

From: Ellen Key — Oct 29, 2013
From: Ellen Leibow — Oct 29, 2013

Always my inspiration, the mastery of your art is only the beginning. It is your wit and wisdom, intelligence, generosity, kindness that make you such a special human being. The way you live and work is amazing. Oh Bob, I had a bit of a bomb myself this month. Had a heart attack on October 10th and a stent to open my clogged artery. I am so glad that did not happen on top of the mountain at the Bugaboos. Once again you are such a model for handling life with grace, humor and dignity. Thank you so very much. Bill and I value your friendship and consider our brief times together some of the best of our lives! Sending lots of light and love.

From: Robin Purcell — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, I am so completely overcome by grief at this sad news. I’ve never corresponded with you directly, but feel you are a close, dear friend and mentor who I have relied on for years for your artistic, spiritual and cerebral guidance. Even now as I write this email, my focus is blurred by tears. I’m sure I’m just one of thousands of followers/students/children who look forward to hearing from you regularly. Please know that my best hopes are with you as this terrible disease progresses. My husband suffers from Early-Onset Alzheimer’s. He was diagnosed 4 years ago when he’d just turned 60 years old. The doctors thought his mental and physical demise would be much more aggressive than it’s been. I think it’s because we’ve greatly simplified our lives to reduce stress, that he continues to live such a vibrant life. We eat super healthy meals, take morning hikes in our Boise, Idaho foothills and spend quiet afternoons painting and writing. My husband’s best friend had Myeloma cancer and was given a life expectancy of only 3 years. He lived for another 10 after the diagnose was given. His approach to dealing with his illness was to ramp up his lifestyle. He traveled more extensively (flew his own plane and guided his own river raft), became a fill-in anesthesiologist at various hospitals, got more involved with his family and even started taking guitar lessons just months before he died. So, different recipes to maintain health can prove those physicians wrong. I hope that you will find one that works for you. Best regards, respect and love, Robin Purcell

From: Victoria Wallace — Oct 29, 2013

Hi there, Robert. I am so sorry to hear of your diagnosis. I hope you, like so very many others, beat the odds and manage to stick around and make more art, write more letters, walk more dogs. I like you. I like what you have to say and the ideas you kindly share. Make the most of what gives you your joy. It’s all one can do, diagnosis shmiagnosis. Take good care, my letter-writing friend. Be well long. Look at the blue of the sky. Feel the warmth of the sun, kiss your kid(s), cuddle your dogs(s). Take care and I will continue to read your long ago immortalized letters..every time I read one, it is that moment again, where you had that thought. :)

From: Lindell Stacy-Horton — Oct 29, 2013

So I finally found my reply to your scary news, and it was not actually sent, I fear. After reading through the first 500 replies and being overwhelmed at the outpouring of positive and loving energy, I was saddened at my humble and somewhat unhelpfully negative one. So here’s another message, this time on a much more positive note. Positive visualization, dear friend, imagine yourself well, and do everything you can, and beat this thing. Too many survivors can’t be wrong, can they! Love and encouragement! And thanks for everything, for all these years…

From: Jane welsh — Oct 29, 2013

I am so very sorry to read this sad news. Your painting and your newsletter are an inspiration to so very many of us. I hope you find solace, comfort, peace and relief in your art in the weeks and months to come.

From: Karen Bandy — Oct 29, 2013

I just read a few of these comments but all were eloquent and beautiful. Robert, as you progress in this new journey you know thousands love you and are behind you. Every day since ‘the bomb’ I have thought of you as I’m sure everyone else has too. I can’t imagine the healing power of that, but I know it’s true. I LOVE Brian Eno’s quote today as I forget that my art, my jewelry especially lives on and will live on long after I have left this plane. Bless you Robert Genn.

From: Aileen McLeod — Oct 29, 2013

Prayers and positive thoughts are with you and family Robert.

From: Pat Wafer — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Bob – I would like to tell you a story of a friend and co-worker who also got the bomb of pancreatic cancer. We were both nurses in a busy dialysis unit. She lived several years after her diagnosis was made and her family gave her a big party on what was her last birthday. I could not go because I was out of town caring for my dad who was also ill but before I left I painted a small still life of 2 plums and a clay pot and put it in a nice frame and gave to a friend to give to Jan at the party. Before I painted it I said a prayer to “whoever” that this painting would be a good one and it was one of those that just painted itself. Everyone at the party thought the painting was a success and Jan and her husband were just thrilled and hung it in their dining room. I have never felt so humble and so grateful that my artwork gave actual joy to people who were going through this terribly tough time. After Jan died I sent her husband a condolence card on which I painted a watercolor landscape which also just painted itself. He wrote back that he had framed the card and was very happy to have 2 original “Wafers”. You are so right about art and immortality. And even if a work of art cannot really last “forever”, it sometimes just transcends time altogether and I am sure that LOTS of your beautiful paintings have done that. I wish you and your family all the best. Pat Wafer, Madison, Wi

From: Ann Crostic — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert- It’s been a couple of days since your post, and I feel the need to write you. I call myself a returning artist. A couple of years ago I started trying to do art again after a very long hiatus. I began by dropping into open figure drawing sessions- something I truly loved while in college. One of the artists in the group offered to sign me up for your twice weekly letter. She explained: it’s short, it’s really good and it doesn’t cost anything! She was correct. What a generous gift it has been to me. In the beginning, there were weeks when the only “art” I accomplished was reading your message. It became part of my “re-art education.” You introduced me to topics, materials and other artists and I researched them further. It encouraged and motivated me. I have been very fortunate in this journey back. So many opportunities and people have presented themselves to me at just the right time. Doors opened .Your twice weekly letter has been (and continues to be) an integral part. I am positive I am not alone. Your gift has touched many. We all have you in our thoughts and prayers. Sending positive thoughts to you and your family.

From: Kim Millen — Oct 29, 2013

Isn’t it a miracle that people all over the planet have been moved by you and now your circumstances. That , in itself is a testament of your life so far. Not only does our art live on, but also all the time and energy we give to others, and you, my friend whom I’ve never met in person, touch and will continue touching other’s lives. How wonderful for us and you!!!

From: Terri Horricks — Oct 29, 2013

Now we’ll get to the good stuff! Thanks for sharing.

From: Patricia Heller — Oct 29, 2013

I wrote to you when I first read your last post, and like all the rest, I was devastated and unbelievably sad. Your words and paintings I share with other artists, especially those starting out so they are encouraged. I send you love and hope and courage to you and Sara. You are the best and treasured beyond words. Love and gratitude, Patsy, Cave Junction Oregon

From: Julie Larick — Oct 29, 2013
From: William McAllister — Oct 29, 2013

I am living with a cancer that can turn at any time. Immortality is yours, my friend, and the works you choose to release now belong to all of us. We who paint and create have the chance to live forever, you, more than most, for your ability to share your gift through your writing. You have moved many to begin or continue painting. You will always live through many hundreds of us. Keep fighting to live and create. We need you. Bill McAllister

From: Lydia gowens — Oct 29, 2013

I am so sorry to hear your news. My prayers are with you. I look forward to your newsletters. But understand you must take care of yourself and be with your family these days.

From: Patricia Jaster — Oct 29, 2013
From: EK O’Connor — Oct 29, 2013

My heart goes out to your and yours. I can’t think of an anecdote or string of words to say that could express the depth of my wishes for your continued environment of love and laughter with loved ones.

From: Susi Franco — Oct 29, 2013

I consider your Painter’s Keys as essential to Life as bread. I’ve read all these loving, heartfelt posts to you from all these artists; it is very rare in life that anyone has the kind of effect & impact on people that you have. As a retired RN I well understand what you’re facing and my heart breaks for you & your family & friends. With all I am, I wish I could offer you comfort, reassurance; but perhaps just reading this page of comments from your legion of admirers may provide a little solace. I am almost certainly one of the kind of artists that’s been the ‘not-to-do’ subject of many postings here, the indignant complaint of so many whose talents far outdistance anything I will ever achieve; I am self-taught, began after a life-altering injury that took everything away ( I truly believed this then) and Art saved me, quite literally. I’ve had a very collapsed time-frame for learning, have experimented with multiple genre and styles, voraciously searching for my own voice. Your wise and wonderful letters have encouraged me to continue to study, to experiment, to doggedly try and be incrementally better at what I do. I’ve gotten several licensing deals in recent years and they help pay the mortgage and oil bills; after I thought all was lost to me, Art gave me a new life, a new ( if quite modest) career. You are a part of that, Robert, because your wisdom was a beacon for me so many times when I felt hugely unequal to my task, felt bewildered & deeply discouraged by all I don’t know and have yet to learn. So, I’m still traveling my Art journey, but you will always be there with me, that small voice that speaks softly and anchors the Muse to less mercurial terrain. Bless you, dear and sage man, and God send you peace and serenity. With a full heart, Susi Franco

From: Ed McCarthy — Oct 29, 2013

I find it refreshing getting a phone call every so often from people I love and care about. A note, is right there with that. But twice a week I get not one, but two notes from a this crazy Canadian artist, who just happens to speak to me, as if I’m standing beside him in his studio. Witty, smart, a bit off the wall, but full of love for his craft, and for those he shares it with. It’s definitely a brotherhood (and sisterhood) that you created here Robert. As a member of that ‘hood, I wish to tell that you are loved and fondly thought of by so many, including myself and my thoughts and prayers go out to you and to your family.

From: Claudia — Oct 29, 2013

I read your news at 2:22 am here in London and am at a loss for words, dear Robert… I look back at a compilation of quotes, tidbits, and passages I’ve transferred and kept over the years, I’ve just discovered that I first stumbled across your shared newsletters almost a decade ago!! Thank you seems ever so inadequate, as do any words of comfort I could say. Know you are well loved and I send strength and courage your way!!

From: Mandy Hague — Oct 29, 2013

Dear Robert, I was shocked to hear your news. I realised with a sudden jolt that I have subscribed to your letters for almost a decade and I couldn’t consider you anything less than a good friend. I must also admit the friendship have been terribly one-sided! I so enjoy your emails and there have been many a time when the subjects you discuss have been so appropriate in that they relate so well to my current work that it’s spooky. I wonder if you’ve been peering in my studio window. But of course that’s silly because I live in New Zealand which is on the other side of the planet from you. Anyway, it’s about time I actually gave something back so I just wanted to say thank you so much for all the letters. I have read every one and stored my favourites in a folder for safe-keeping. The life of an artist can be lonely so it has been reassuring to know I am not the only one dealing with the same artistic challenges as the ones you have shared. It has been great to hear your thoughts and opinions, they have helped me so much on my own artistic journey. And so my friend, I send warm wishes and virtual hugs your way. Thank you so much, your unselfish actions have meant you have affected so many people the world over in such a positive way. Your paintings are not your only legacy.

From: Phyllis W. — Oct 29, 2013

God be with you and your family. I have lost several close members of my family to cancer, my mother at 47 years old. I have also had friends who have beat the impossible odds and I pray that you will be one of them. God Bless Phyllis

From: Colleen Brown — Oct 29, 2013

Robert, sending prayers for healing and recovery. Sending heartfelt blessings to you and your family. Thank you for all of the emails I have received so far and all to come!

From: Torrie Groening — Oct 29, 2013

Sending you and your family strength and warm wishes. Especially while living away from BC, I have so enjoyed your visual descriptions of working here and the draw to the Westcoast. Also…I thank you for sharing your relationship with Sara. We all hope to share our art lives so well with our kids! Integrative Health Care in Fort Langley is a private oncology health centre led by the smart and kind, Dr. Parmar. He is respectful and attracts patients worldwide.

From: Adriana Guidi — Oct 29, 2013
From: Michael O’Toole — Oct 30, 2013

You are about the most creative person i know Robert. You will find a yellow brick path that leads you through these stormy times and the Sun will shine down on you again. Seek out Phase 3 trials. God Bless!

From: Cindy in Hawaii — Oct 30, 2013

Dear Robert, I light a candle for you & hope that the energy, healing light & love surround you and bring you & your family peace. For you to bring all of us together to cry, share, inspire & hope is a true testament that you are as grand as the mountains you paint and love!

From: mary easaw thomas — Oct 30, 2013

i believe Jesus is our Healer. Isaiah 53:5. 1 Peter 2:24. I am praying that you will be miraculously healed. JESUS is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. Even if you do not allow this to be put up on your page, I do pray with all my heart, that Robert or Sara will be allowed to read this.

From: Marilyn Wells — Oct 30, 2013

I was so sad to hear the news of the bomb. I smiled when I got the next letter thinking that maybe you would say it wasn’t so. Not the case. I am so sorry. I have relished the bits and bobs of insight, chuckles, grins, joy, amazement, encouragement and education that I have gotten from your letters. I, too, have never written. I am a decorative painter (patterns) and on my best days, my painting is average. I am not exactly in the fine art category, so what could I add? At any rate, thank you, thank you, thank you. You are truly a servant. I hope that Sara will take up the task of writing letters. We should all enjoy every day that we have.

From: Missy Cassidy — Oct 30, 2013

Robert – your letters I read each week,as well as your wonderful book you worked so hard to publish, have inspired me in so many ways! I am still a student – at age 60 – but your thoughts, advice, humor, insights and how clearly you have shared your feelings over the years have kept me moving forward. I am sorry to hear of your condition – please take care of yourself and enjoy your family. You have given much to the world! Many of us are with you faithfully – in prayer and in thought. With much gratitude, Missy

From: Pam Wong, Sarnia, Ont. — Oct 30, 2013

Robert..just read your “bomb” and it does feel like one. It hits home as we lost two family and a friend to cancer last year. My grandma died of the same disease when I was a teenager. Some how her passing shaped my path with a silent promise to “do my art” in my middle 20 years. I was lucky enough to be able to do that. Your letters have played a big part in keeping going..A silent conversation if you will. I am happy to say that your painting that we purchased in Vancouver has a very happy home here. My thoughts and prayers go out to you and yours. Thank you for sharing all your thoughts with is a legacy all its own. Hugs!

From: Gerry in Idaho — Oct 30, 2013

Robert, thank you for so openly sharing with us your diagnosis just as you have always so graciously shared your experiences and ideas which continue to inspire us. I appreciate your ideas about sorting through your body of artwork. Our spiritual lives continue, also, and I pray that you put your trust in Christ for eternal life. He says, I am the resurrection and the life: he that believes in me though he were dead, yet shall he live. John 11:25 God’s blessings to you and your family.

From: Sherrill — Oct 30, 2013

Words just cannot express the feeling, another reason why we are artists. Praying for you and crying for you.

From: Lee Rommel — Oct 30, 2013

Dear Robert and Sara, Robert, your giving spirit of information, leveity, knowledge, and inspiration will be greatly missed when you are no longer with us. I thank you for the last few years I have recieved your emails. I send my prayers and positive thoughts to you and Sara. I am saddened…. Lee

From: Linda — Oct 30, 2013

I am saddened by your news, yet I thank you for sharing it . You have have brought so much inspiration over the years. May your journey continue with as much ease as possible. Linda

From: Sylvia Harmon — Oct 30, 2013

Dear Robert, I’m fairly new to your Painter’s Keys site and your newsletter. I’m a beginning artist but I must tell you that your words and thoughts are so inspirational and help me “see” things in perspective, not only in real life but through my painting. You can rest assured that your life and paintings have had amazing purpose by impacting the many thousands of us that connect with you worldwide. I know I speak for all, we fervently hope you will conquer this horrific disease and bring us many more years of inspiration. With love, hugs and gratitude, Sylvia Harmon

From: christine schiff — Oct 30, 2013

oh my, did I cry when I received and read “the bomb”! you are family and have been always since I began reading your letters a number of years ago… I finally could not keep up here on the computer with all that was in each and every one of the letters – including the clickbacks – so asked as a gift that my son order your “…letters” book for me on a holiday occasion. that book was something that i’d intended to give myself for the longest time but had never gotten around to doing. when the book did not arrive as quickly as my son had wished, he told me that he had then called you and had talked with you personally to inquire. i was surprised (and envious) that he had actually talked with you…and thanks to you, the book was promptly received and sits in a place of honor on a table atop other art books that I particularly love. the nicest thing about you ongoing, I think, has been your total unselfishness in sharing with other artists “all” that you have learned over many years. that information has been invaluable to me on so many levels that I cannot begin to speak to them – the spiritual, the commonsensical, the technical – too many more to even recall. indeed what a gift you are to all of us. in conclusion, just wanted to say that each of us is here on earth until we are not, and let’s leave it at that. you have much more to share and I expect to keep learning from you for a long time to come. sending ongoing well wishes and love your way…

From: Cello Bennett — Oct 30, 2013
From: ronit judelman — Oct 30, 2013

dear robert, although you are facing very difficult times be sure to know that ‘the force’ is with you. the force of thousands of artists to whom you are a personal friend and a guide. we need you to continue to be the positive, motivating agent that you are… we are all praying that your good health be restored. i believe that with the support of so many you will come through ‘this mass’ to continue to be a light- house for many years to come. sincere thanks, ronit judelman south africa/israel

From: J. R. — Oct 30, 2013

You have indeed gotten thousands of emails. Don’t lose sight of the fact that as an artist, you have a strong connection to your right brain and subconscious, where all possibilities exist. There is no logic, no judgement, no decisions…all there is, is what you state as fact. Your thought produces action – be exacting, using all your senses, Robert. Doctors do not know everything.

From: catherine robertson — Oct 30, 2013

Dear Robert, Just read my emails of the past few days and saw your sad news. I want you to know that I’ve always told all my art friends and students that “Robert Genn, our own W.Rock artist, is the kindest, most giving person and artist I’ve ever known. Always sharing what he knows, is gentle in his critiques, as well as constructive, and no other artist, workshop-instructor, juror and plein-air-instructor could be more appreciated and admired for all he’s done for all of us.” Robert, for what it is worth, my brother, Frank, was diagnosed with inoperable cancer and given a year to live. That was almost three years ago. He has gone through his treatments and is now fine and the tumor has disappeared. Many prayers were offered to Jesus Christ, whom our family all accept as the Lord and great physician, so who can say? Maybe it sounds silly but He does tell us “You do not have because you don’t ask!” Why not give him a try? In any case, Robert, you are much loved and admired and I can only say my art life is better because of what you have given me in the past. In Christ, Catherine

From: Susan — Oct 30, 2013

Dear Robert, Your bomb post arrived on my birthday when I was giving private thanks for the wonderful life I’ve been permitted after the first of my two cancer diagnoses over 30 years ago. You have the support and fervent good wishes of thousands who have written and others who haven’t yet… but carry thoughts of you and all you have given us, throughout our days. May all of this positive energy buoy you and see you through your treatment to recovery.

From: Gail McNally — Oct 30, 2013
From: Ellen Barnett — Oct 30, 2013

Dear Robert, I anxiously await your newsletters. The information is practical, provocative and ever so useful. I have insisted that my friends subscribe and they do. You have made a difference in my artistic life and my personal life and so many others. I was shocked to learn about your diagnosis. My heart sank. If anyone can lick this, you can, with your zest and enthusiasm for living. Keep on doing what you love. My very best to you and your family as you go through your treatment. Creatively yours, Ellen Barnett

From: mars — Oct 30, 2013

U r a great inspiration—find it difficult 2 paint these days– thinking about ur plight–see U on Mars– that’s where I’m going.

From: Shari — Oct 30, 2013

While reading the “Bomb” post, I felt like I had received very disturbing news about a close family member! Your diagnosis is shocking, but only God holds tomorrow in His hands so there’s ALWAYS HOPE. He’s known for miraculous healings. You have added so much joy and inspiration to my life through your letters over the years. Thank you for all your generosity! For now, take extra good care of yourself, friend. I’m praying your days will be filled with peace, joy, and healing, and may you and your family be filled with extra strength and hope at this difficult time. Will look forward to a day when this is behind you and you are writing again! Blessings from South Dakota.

From: McCluskey — Oct 30, 2013

Life is about living and touching as many lives as possible, I think you are doing a darn good job. You don’t know me however you have left a piece of yourself and have given me the courage to go out into the art world. What a gift, thanks.

From: Mary Kruger — Oct 30, 2013
From: Marilyn Troutman — Oct 31, 2013

I am sending you positive thoughts for healing. Stay strong.

From: Mary Amicarella — Oct 31, 2013

I just returned from vacation and read your “Bomb” newsletter. It is such a shock. You and your newsletters have been a constant source of encouragement, inspiration and information. Please don’t give up. I am praying for you daily.

From: Mabel Morrison — Oct 31, 2013
From: Deann Rex — Oct 31, 2013

Robert, Thank you so much for your unselfish generosity. You are truly a light to us all. Love to you and your family.

From: Denis Madvo — Oct 31, 2013

I could not believe, today, what I was reading, having always found tremendous inspiration and reassurance in your letters. Even though I have never written to you, I was deeply sorrowed and even cried at the news. I always wanted to let you know how much I respected and appreciated your emails but never had the courage to write to you any sooner. Your very lucid perspectives, as an artist and as a balanced holistic thinker, have always been a strong beam of inspiration and hope giving me a lot of needed courage to proceed as a functioning human being, let alone as an artist. I need to express my extreme gratitude for all your shared thoughts and to THANK YOU so much for all that you have done, so far. I wish you and your family all the strength you can find. You will always be a truly inspiring person who reaches out and helps many artists, and no matter what happens. I wish you the strongest daily inspiration and focus, to allow you to continue with your life’s mission.

From: Peggy Ramsey — Oct 31, 2013

How sad am I, along with so many other true fellow disciples of yours. But at the same time filled with great hope. Just reading some of the responses to your troubling news has made me realize how truly unselfish and inspirational you have been to so many people. (Not just to me). I just feel that anyone who has so much to offer to so many, must have to have more time to help make our troubled world better. And that sir, you have done! Please know how special you have been in my life, and will continue to be, for a long, long time.

From: Jim Long — Oct 31, 2013

Your email stating your health situation stunned me, and I couldn’t tell if you were frightened, hopeful, sad or defeated, but I felt a compulsion to email you. I absolutely enjoy your emails I’ve received over the years, and just want to let you know that I am sending the best positive energy your way and am hoping you overcome this challenge.

From: Suzanne Small — Oct 31, 2013

I know that you will fight this battle with the same strength and grace that you share with us in every newsletter. Do not give up hope. There is so much cancer research and new developments in treatments on almost a daily basis. Try to get into a clinical trial if you can. But no matter what treatments the docs prescribe, hold onto that hope. It can perform miracles even in the worst prognosis. I know this only from our own experience. My husband was diagnosed with colon cancer 21 years ago when he was 60 years old. They gave him 6 months. He never gave up hope and after two surgeries lived an active, full and happy life for many years! With my warmest regards to you and your family and a big hug to Dorothy,

From: Alisa Brown — Oct 31, 2013
From: Karen (Foxy) Fox — Oct 31, 2013

It has been a shock to us all, your news of illness as it is always in our own families. I think my first response was a very selfish one. Who will write to us? Where will the answers come from? You immediately reassured us by saying that Sara would step in. How kind of you to think of us all at this time but then a lot is expected from someone who continues to give so much of themselves. Funny that? You and your family are in my thoughts, and I can’t thank you enough. I wish you a gentle illness.

From: Carol Small — Oct 31, 2013
From: Jackie Ramsay — Oct 31, 2013

This is just one of the many reasons that you and your insightful letters have meant so much to myself and countless other followers. You wrote this a couple of years ago. Now I know why I saved that paragraph. “At Hollyhock my easel was left set up under an apple tree. In the early dawn I saw from a distance it was visited by a doe and two fawns. Silently I approached, and the three deer tip-toed lightly into the woods – but not before each took one last apple. Could I ever find a greater reason to pursue my day? Could it be so difficult to be grateful? Who among us isn’t grateful for you?

From: Roger Davis — Oct 31, 2013

Thank you Robert. You are a valued source of information on painting and inspiration for living well.

From: Debrah Barr — Oct 31, 2013

Your “BOMB” email hit me like..a bomb. I am big believer in gratitude, prayer, faith. I have been so very grateful to have found the painters keys – for truly – once I read a few – that is when I began to “live” each day as an artist. I developed painting habits and a level of confidence I had just not been able to achieve because I had not been shown how..too shy for art school or classes. So- I am doing today what I will not put off for tomorrow.

From: Frederick Ross — Oct 31, 2013

The “The Bomb” arrived when I was attending a Mayo Clinic conference in Arizona (I am a family physician). One of the speakers referred to turmeric as a natural substance used in treating pancreatic cancer. No cure perhaps but may allay. I too am sorry to learn of your condition. One of my very dear friends-a professor at the University of Manitoba is fighting this same affliction and he is 54. My prayers and thoughts are with you and your talented family. The love of your family will sustain you during this difficult time. Warmest wishes from an admirer and proud collector.

From: Nina Stephens — Oct 31, 2013

I worked for an oncologist who told me that if people could only understand that cancer feeds on sugar. To rid the body of cancer you must remove the sugar that sustains the cancerous beast. He said cancer is a living eating beast that must be starved by cutting off the one thing that sustains it…sugar. All processed food has sugar in one form or another. This doctor told me the best way to fight is to go back to basics and organic.

From: Joseph Marmo — Oct 31, 2013

Your creative talents extend far beyond your canvases. You incorporate everything from history, philosophy, science, and the arts with your own personal experiences in your humorous, anecdotal style of disseminating knowledge. Thank you.

From: Lynda Jamieson — Oct 31, 2013

You have had a profound influence on my thoughts of what a painting should be, could be, “What could be?” the question you ask as you demo your fine work. I have followed you as an artist and enjoyed your and books and weekly letters so very much for many years. You are real Canadian Icon.! At a recent workshop on beautiful Cortes Island, your mentorship was invaluable for me, as was Sara’s. Not only did I leave with even more admiration for you and your work, but observing the relationship between you and your talented daughter showed that you are blessed with a loving family. The saying: “The apple don’t fall too far from the tree” certainly holds true in your case.

From: Nikolay Semyonov — Oct 31, 2013

There are a lot of great artists all over the globe. However, there could only be half a dozen of those who are also capable of giving a deepest insight into what they do and sharing the abundance of wisdom and concepts. I’ve been enjoying your letters for quite long and must admit they prove most inspiring. I am very grateful for everything you do. Doctors are no gods, like anyone else under Heaven, and I am hoping you’ll be able to prove it. Sending you love and peace and my deepest gratitude for everything you do for us. Rostov-na-Donu Russia

From: Hugh Williams — Oct 31, 2013

You and I have never met in the flesh. We live on opposite ends of the planet as I am in Christchurch,New Zealand and I guess we are of a similar age. I have never written in reply to your wonderful twice weekly letters, but I felt you, and came to know you, through them, as a friend. I have admired and valued your wisdom and the beautiful humanity of your writings.

From: Rod Morgan, MD — Oct 31, 2013

As a surgeon I urge you to seek the best of medical care and do so very quickly, as this condition can be extremely swift and serious in its progression. If necessary, move to Vancouver for a short while and push hard to get all of your investigations and treatment plans in order quickly. Such action may make a very significant difference in your prognosis, and hence your future quality of life. On a personal side, I wish you the very best in dealing with this horrible problem. Life is full of surprises and eventually they are not all good. I know from your writing that you have enjoyed the challenges and rewards of your active, and fruitful, life. Your paintings and writings, knowing only those two features of your personal skills, demonstrate to your fans and citizens generally, that you have earned time to relax a bit and continue your life, should it direct you to do things that are somewhat different than you currently feel is appropriate. This cancer business forces you to make those decisions now and many of us know that you will make the right choices. I have read suggestions that you should go to the Mayo Clinic for the best care. The choice, in the end, must be made by you and your trusted associates, likely your family. However, British Columbia and Canada generally is not behind in knowledge or application of all treatment modes for this complex cancerous problem. Your job will be to get to the experts quickly for serious planning before the cancer spreads and becomes uncontrollable, if such is the case at this time.

From: Craig Northey — Oct 31, 2013
From: Linda Flaherty — Oct 31, 2013

If you hear a collective sigh of sadness, it’s us – all of the artist friends of yours out here who are mentored by your wisdom and wit. Your philosophical, pragmatic and beautiful observations of painting and painters, art of all kinds, but especially of life, have over and over again been a wake-up call to not take ourselves so seriously that we miss the journey of life. As artists it’s important to just go to work. Mostly before we start thinking about it too much. You can’t really walk into any room of people without finding that many of them have had some kind of duel with cancer – sometimes life-threatening, and sometimes not. But the fact is, that if it weren’t for the advances of medical science over the past 20 years or so, many of those same people wouldn’t be alive today. Sometimes when we’re brought face to face with ourselves in some way, we recognize something that doesn’t have words – it might be a beautiful side or an ugly side of our personalities that we suddenly recognize – but there it is. Art does that – makes us see what we can’t see and can’t verbalize. I’ve always been astounded at your energy – continuously painting, teaching workshops, all the writing – it’s quite amazing. All the best to you and your family, Robert, as you all work your way through this thing that’s facing you. We will all welcome whatever you write, whenever you write, and we will take into the fold and appreciate Sara.

From: Donna Brown — Oct 31, 2013
From: Liz Coomes — Oct 31, 2013

Yes, we artists are so fortunate to have such strength of belief and hope that as we live we keep on creating. We seem to be vaccinated from birth against limitations. We take joy in the moment and the place more easily than most. It is a blessing.

From: Brent Laycock — Oct 31, 2013

You and I have actually shared quite a bit over the past decades even though we’ve only met a handful of times. Your weekly letters, books and art have provided me and countless others much joy, understanding and insight. Maybe knowing that there are legions of friends who have been touched by your work can give you a helpful boost that will strengthen you through the coming months.

From: Brian Baxter — Oct 31, 2013

It is no exaggeration to say I found inspiration in your letters often, you seemed to be tuned in to so many of the problems and questions that only a fellow artist can share. I sincerely wish you the very best in the months ahead and feel like I am sharing sad news from an old friend, even though I never met you personally and probably never will, from this side of the world in New Zealand.

From: LINDA G. SANDERS — Oct 31, 2013

Sometimes we forget how much power we have. Do not give your cancer any energy by focusing on it. Feeding it fear has the power to destroy you. FIGHT WITH ALL YOUR MIGHT!

From: tom whiteside — Oct 31, 2013

Robert… Please know you will be in my and my wife’s thoughts and prayers; and, as I know you know from your observations of life and nature, that miracles happen every day. God be with you.

From: Dawn — Oct 31, 2013

Reading your newsletters has been a highlight for me the past few years and I have even sent your website address to my son and his wife, neither whom are visual artists but it doesn’t matter. Your knowledge of life in general is so thought provoking and there always seems to be a good lesson in each letter. When I got the ” bomb” newsletter, I was quickly shaken out of my procrastination slump and went to my art room and painted. You are one of my favorite people tho I have never really met you. You have made a difference in so many peoples lives! I am sending you and your family warm healing thoughts.

From: Mary Ann Laing — Oct 31, 2013

I came here to catch up on reading your newsletters, only to read such sad news, and feel somewhat guilty for not reading it as soon as it was posted. Many emotions come to me right now, gratitude for being able to take your workshop back in the 90s, being able to listen to your speeches when you were the featured artist speaker, being able to watch your artwork through the years, it’s impact on my artistic soul who learned then the beauty that could be offered through paint, deeply inspired was I. And many years now of your words that rambled through my computer to remind me that life and art are one, connected and filled with purpose, problems that would be worth the task and time they took to solve, always. I do not know the extent of your cancer, but I do have a friend who has survived pancreatic cancer now for over 10 years and is still cancer free. I am angry that this is happening to you, but I will not give up hope that you will survive. Thank you for who you are, Robert Genn, thank you.

From: Diane Voyentzie — Nov 01, 2013

Dear Robert, I am just catching up with my emails after a trip to St. Petersburg, Russia. It was a trip inspired by you and your ceaseless wonderment at this astonishing world. The incredible art that was made over the centuries by unnamed artists in the vast cathedrals of the world has lived on , but no less is your gift to the world. I have read and saved so many of your beautiful letters for the days that I needed inspiration. My heart goes out to you and your family, but just remember that you can live with cancer..Where there is life there is hope. My husband has had cancer for 12 years. We enjoy life very much. Thank you, Robert. You are a wonderful example of a life greatly lived.

From: Cherie — Nov 01, 2013

Thank you for all you so generously give. I send prayers for love and strength to you and your loved ones. I hope your stay is longer than predicted and filled with joy and peace.

From: David.R (UK) — Nov 01, 2013

Robert, these responses to your sad news are a testimony to your unselfish gifts of time and knowledge given to thousands of people. Now it is our turn to give back and I’m so thankful that there are individuals posting messages of hope and even offering professional advice. You have created an extended family of fellow artists. Who knows what miraculous good can come out of it?

From: michele hausman — Nov 01, 2013

Robert, thank you for your regular posts. In times of doubt, your voice has kept me on track. Yours is a validating voice with whom to travel the art journey. Thanks for all the reflections and support. I will stay tuned and send my thoughts of joy your way.

From: Eileen — Nov 01, 2013

Robert, Your messages to us all, as an artist, as a lover of the natural world, as one who shares an intense appreciation of people and of life in general– have enriched our lives, buoyed our spirits, and given us invaluable lessons in the art of painting, and the art of living. Thank you, thank you. You and your family are in my prayers.

From: Joan Kaldawi — Nov 01, 2013

“Christians know how to face difficulties, trials and defeat with serenity and hope in the Lord.” — Pope Francis Don’t know if you’re Christian – doesn’t matter, I know you are a good person – whatever faith you are or are not, keep hope and serenity in your heart.

From: Ted Harrison — Nov 01, 2013
From: stephan chmilnitzky — Nov 01, 2013

Dear Robert: I write to say how pleased I am for the attitude you have on receiving the devastating news pertaining to your health. No matter what the outcome, I am sure you’ll be at peace and joy, accepting that life has no garantees. As an artist you understand how blessed you are to create in kinship with the creator works that bring pleasure to all that witness. Artists encourage us all to take notice of nature and the wonders all around that we sometimes take for granted. For many years I worked as a healer thinking that this was a calling and had some success. I soon realized that the best healer was the person I was attempting to heal. In order to be successful I had to convince the person that what I did worked. The thoughts and beliefs, if they were strongely possitive, made the changes and eradicated the disease. Not every ailment can be elimitated because I also came to realize each soul has certain experiences they need to struggle through which no one can alter. For what it’s worth I sent you a healing and love. May you walk the green fields for ever! SBC

From: Dorothy dhunter Adams — Nov 01, 2013

May Jesus wrap His healing arms around you Robert. (written earlier but maybe it didn’t reach you)

From: Cathy Hasty — Nov 01, 2013

You have touched so many and will continue to do so as you explore the edge of this unknown. I hope you share the wisdom about the journey with the candor of this beginning and the depth of your regular reflection. I have walked with many people through this unknown; as hospital chaplain, as psychotherapist, as daughter. There are no words, yet we have to try to reach around the edges. I hope you pay attention to your dreams and to what you want rather than to the anxiety and recommendations and predictions of others. Only you know what brings joy and energy and beauty to your life. You seem more aware of these than most, and what a blessing you are to others. May you know the kindness of strangers, and the love of friends, family, acquaintances.

From: Gloria Angelino — Nov 01, 2013

There is no way to repay you for what you have given to artists over the years. Your legacy is with all the artists you’ve touched and in the art created that may not have been seen otherwise. No small feat!

From: Louella Davis — Nov 01, 2013

Robert I have enjoyed your letters and videos, thank you. I know your cancer is in a bad place but contact cancer centers of America they have had success with this particular cancer. I am a cancer survivor and sometimes it isn’t time to go! Don’t give up. Praying for you.

From: Mary Beth — Nov 01, 2013

Dear Robert……….I don’t have words to express my sadness at your news……….but I am surrounding you with prayers of light and love and beauty…..and hoping for your recovery…….your letters have been an encouragement and I thank you for each and every one

From: Larry Johnston — Nov 02, 2013

Dear Robert, I just want to add my voice to the many. I feel as though I know you, although we’ve never met. I’ve read your newsletter for several years. May you defy the odds and have many more years in front of you, but it’s never too soon to say thank you.

From: Mimi Ball — Nov 02, 2013

Dear Robert your weekly Letters have been , really Fabulous & i have so loked forward to these , in many ways for me , they have been a great help.!, Very Sad to hear how Ill you are . But do hpe & Pray , you will recover .And i thank you for all Letters .

From: Clara McArthur — Nov 02, 2013

I thank you for the inspiration and the twice weekly letters that I have been reading and enjoying for many years now. It was a shock to hear your news, and I am thinking and praying for you and your family. I just want to say thank you for all the help and inspiration you have given me. I am a “hobby artist” but always love to learn.

From: Caryl — Nov 02, 2013

You have been so generous to all of us for years with your letters. I have found inspiration and many thought provoking lessons along with good humour and kindness. Like all others, I hope you can beat this terrible diagnosis, you have a world of people sending your our thoughts, thank you so much.

From: Pat K — Nov 02, 2013

Robert — I am hardly an artist, but do think of myself as a creative type. I’ve written you before for permission to republish your letters (which you have always given graciously). I dabble in some fiber arts and I write a bit. Your letters always inspire me. I am also a close relative of 3 young people who received bad cancer news. The worst was a young man who was given less than 5% chance of living one year. He is now 20 years post diagnosis, cancer free, and is a fairly well respected glass artist. He is one of my heroes because seeing someone so young (he was 5 at diagnosis) go through so much and come out the other side has to be inspiring. I share this because while I know your outlook is not the best, I believe in hope and miracles and pray you will experience one. Thank you for all you have done to inspire and to direct me (from afar).

From: Jacalin E.M. Fulton — Nov 03, 2013

My husband Craig passed away from pancreatic cancer September 24, 2012 may respectfully suggest any projects, time with family, sooner rather than later. Final diagnosis and we don’t know why it took them several months but it came on August 26, 2012 and my dear husband passed away quietly at the Moog & Friends Hospice in Penticton. BC on Sept. 24, 2012. We have admired your work for years, thank you. I have just signed on for your newsletter and will pray for your journey to have a good and successful outcome. Jacalin (Jackie) Fulton.

From: Cynthia Wilhelm — Nov 03, 2013

Bless you, Robert Genn. Thank you for your prolific generosity in art and in life. I wish you and your family well in the precious time ahead. Love, Cynthia

From: Jennifer Lohs — Nov 03, 2013

Dear Robert, thank you. Having been profoundly moved by your recent “bomb”, I wanted to thank you for sharing your life, your art, your wisdom. I continue to gain a more complete understanding of myself and others through your letters. One cannot hope for more. Food for the soul, Robert Genn, always. Your generosity of spirit continues to inspire deep within daily. My thoughts are with you and your family. Kind regards from Australia, Jennifer Lohs

From: Elana Winsberg — Nov 04, 2013

Thank you, Robert, for sharing this news. It takes courage to be grateful yet to face death, which we all must face. Just a matter of when and how is all. I wish we all thought about it this way to better appreciate each lovely and sometimes terrible moment as even the resentments, after all are life, too. With love and good wishes for your family and most of all to send you appreciations for the generosity and your example of living well each day. Your life is so important to my life. (Not only because of your wonderful painting of Indian Arm on our wall.) Elana from Seattle

From: D Schons — Nov 04, 2013

Your generosity of love, life and art has impacted me deeply. You have been the source of profound lessons and learning and I have learned much from your wonderful example. I am so grateful to you for your time, tireless energy and moving insights. My life has been enriched because of you and I wish you and your family God Speed as you travel this next leg of your journey. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers. Give ’em Hell!

From: Gary Holbrook — Nov 04, 2013

Dear Robert. After being stunned by your news, I have delayed visiting this page and the wave of responses it would undoubtedly contain. Upon reading through them I am just so very moved and proud to be a member of this brother/sisterhood that you have drawn to you. I value what you share with us more than words can say. There is no explaining the depth of the (soul?) connection that can be made with someone you have never met – all I know is that it is very real. You continue to inspire. Loving thoughts to you and yours.

From: rainy burns — Nov 04, 2013

Dear Robert, You taught me how to be an artist. If appreciation and support have any power to heal, you are on your way in this landslide of love.

From: Free Range Artist — Nov 04, 2013
From: Janet Catmull — Nov 04, 2013

I’m grateful for all your insights and I pray you’ll recover your good health.

From: Elizabeth Finnigan — Nov 04, 2013

Each is called before the Throne of God at His time– not ours. To be able to have a final opportunity to prepare is indeed a blessing. Artists who understand the value of light will experience a brilliance beyond any ever known. Love not fear will fill their souls. Thank you Robert for sharing and caring about all of us.

From: Caroline Hunter — Nov 04, 2013

I started painting in 2000 when I was 67 years. Very soon my then husband and I were hooked on your letters, and although Bob didn’t paint he was such an admirer that he printed every one of your twice weekly always-valuable letters. (Do you remember the one about the man who watched over your shoulder as you painted an elephant, and promised to come back later to help you? Where were you? What wonderful travels you’ve had!) By 2003 I had achieved that sought-after level of “Active” status with the FCA. That was also the year that the Victoria Chapter of the F.C.A. was invited to Salt Spring Island with their Fall Art Show, and were promised a one-on-one critique by the Master himself, Robert Genn. The thrill of it! You gave generously of your time, I think all day, and in fact you missed your ferry back home because we used up so much of your time. When my moment came you pointed to my w/c dog – but I indicated that I wanted to achieve more. You looked at my two paintings and gave me one of the best pieces of advice I have ever received – i.e. “Beware of static lines”. The other piece of advice was “Go to your room”! Wonderful! Just what I needed! By 2004 my Bob had died, and the one thing that kept me on an even keel was painting, and sharing ideas with those wonderful friends I had made in several art clubs, The Oak Bay Art Club, the Victoria Sketch Club, S.P.A.C.. the F.C.A. – having come from another part of the world it was like coming home again. By 2009 the F.C.A. had awarded me with the status “Associate”, an excitement I shared with my new love, whom I married this last January, Rory Kirby who was equally enthralled with your wonderful twice-weekly letters, the same man who wrote to you so eloquently immediately after “The Bomb”. You printed his letter so you may remember. We are in our eighties now with wobbly health issues, and too frequently I see dear friends go on before me and I unreasonably rant that there is no justice. But you have it right, Robert, you are living that “life well-lived”, you are recognizing your blessings and are able to see the beauty and the joy around you – enjoying and sharing it all with myriad others – what a gift! Thank you Robert for your guidance and your spirit-lifting letters. We stopped printing them years ago – the paper would have pushed us out of the house by now, but I depend on your Sarah to keep us posted with your lovely thoughts and assurances – you won’t be far away, and meanwhile I wish you and your family every blessing you can think of – from a very grateful student, F. Caroline Hunter

From: Olga de Sanctis — Nov 04, 2013
From: Eileen Escueta — Nov 05, 2013

I can’t think of anything to say, except THANK YOU, ROBERT… for all your generosity and your heartfelt advice in anything “life” and “art”. Your profound influence in this community that you have created will live long and far and wide. May God keep you safe always in the palm of His hands.

From: Michael O’Toole — Nov 05, 2013

Cancer can be conquered at any stage. Knowing this myself, 12 years fighting advanced Melanoma. Beat the hell out of it Robert!

From: Rebecca Seymour — Nov 06, 2013
From: Ruth Ann Mitchell — Nov 10, 2013
From: Francie Mary — Nov 12, 2013
From: Mary Cogswell — Nov 14, 2013

Robert, You are in my prayers and we all support you. Thousands of voices are raised in your honor. God Bless You. And thank you for all you have done.

From: Catherine Molland — Nov 15, 2013

I am so sorry to hear this news. I am hoping and praying for a quick and complete healing for you. I appreciate all you have done over the years inspiring us artists with your always interesting and knowledgeable letters. Thank you so much!

From: Carole Sisto — Nov 15, 2013

I am one of those who have never written before…my heart is with you and your loved ones. Thank you for the years of insightful, informative newsletters…you have inspired and motivated so many artists and you have contributed so much to the art community. Even more than the art inspirtation, guidance and tips I have appreciated your approach to life. The numerous messages that you have received are only one indication that you touched and enriched so many lives. Thank you for sharing your life with us.

From: Muriel Dowle — Nov 19, 2013

Dear Mr Genn, although I only signed up for your newsletter yesterday……because I just discovered its existence, I have always felt your work speaks. I am so saddened you are ill and my prayers are added to the rest. When I realize how the news of your illness has affected me, I can imagine your family’s devastation. I’m lost for words. Take good care…..Muriel

From: Karen James — Nov 22, 2013

Robert I have enjoyed reading your letters for many years now & even though I often get behind in my reading of the letters, they sit patiently in my “Robert Genn letters” file piling up until in a quiet hour I read a few. I always feel something when I read your letters, whether it’s an answer to a current problem I might be having in my own art & teaching or sometimes I can relate it to another area in life. Thank you so much for all your guidance & generous wisdom over the years, you are one very special human being & you have made this world a better place for so many lucky people by sharing your thoughts with us, most of us have never even met you, but you have a way of making us feel like we too are special. Sending you much love from Kaikoura all the way down in the South Island of New Zealand x

From: Deke Brown — Dec 09, 2013

These many messages and prayers of support only validate the contribution that you are making to the lives of so many people who find joy in art. You have amplified that joy in its most basic sense. I can add two more stories of remission and cure – it happens all the time, so know that you have many spiritual guides to wellness. Get plenty of rest.

From: Peter Waters — Dec 13, 2013

Robert- As a member of your “tribe”, I write this through tears that so many before me have shared and am led to wonder if the catharsis is not selfishly ours the writers .So many of us feel we know you as a friend without ever having had the opportunity of meeting you. I listened to your recent radio interview with great delight which regrettably has been replaced by by very sad news of your departure on yet another trip. Not to Australia,as per your bucket list, but to other parts of the universe. I am not a religious person, but do believe that wherever your trip takes you,will become an immensely better place for it. The landscapes and others will welcome you with open arms. Good luck AND don’t forget to take your paints !1

From: Debbie Bates — Jan 09, 2014

Love & Peace

   Featured Workshop: Sheila Parsons
102913_robert-genn Sheila Parsons Workshops Held in Mexico   The Workshop Calendar provides up-to-date selected workshops and seminars arranged in chronological order.

shadows darling

oil painting, 36 x 36 inches by Sara Genn, New York, NY, USA

  You may be interested to know that artists from every state in the USA, every province in Canada, and at least 115 countries worldwide have visited these pages since January 1, 2013. That includes Patricia Turner of Meridian, ID, USA who wrote, “Your letters have helped me get back to the easel after a bad illness. I wish I could do the same for you.” And also Alison Nicholls of Port Chester, NY, USA who wrote, “Please beat this disease into submission. Then you’ll find that you cleared out your studio for a much better reason, to make way for many, many more new paintings.” And also Richard Robinson of Ruakaka, New Zealand who wrote, “Bob, my mother-in-law had pancreatic cancer a few years ago and came out the other side unscathed. I’m praying the same will happen for you. Love, Richard.”    

Robert and Sara Genn Twice-Weekly Letters

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