The Longshoreman


The Longshoreman, 16″ x 20″ oil on linen canvas board, framed by the artist.

I used to think old people were exotic, until it dawned on me that I was slowly becoming old myself. Now when I paint an elderly person it is a silent protest against ageism, which I am experiencing more and more. The International Longshoremen’s Association is the largest Union of Maritime Workers in North America. For the most part, the work is grueling. It makes or breaks you. I took the reference photo about ten years ago. I don’t remember where I was or what his name. But I’ve been haunted by his image ever since. I don’t know why it took so long to paint this portrait. The challenge is to not make this a painting about wrinkles but to focus instead on character, which is more than skin deep.

I imagine this gentleman has seen it all. He is hardened by experience and his integrity is deeply won. He is a man of few words but he always will have your back. His gaze is sharp and so is his mind. Age has only made him stronger, more determined. He doesn’t suffer fools. But he is filled with love for those who mean the world to him. He is a grandfather, a brother and a friend. To be in his inner circle would be an honor.

Additional information

Dimensions N/A
Type of Work

Original Painting by Robert Maniscalco, Giclee – archival inks, stretch on canvas, Artists Proof (AP) – archival inks and paper


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