Today, the 76-year-old applies that creativity to his paintings. Maloney is one of two Murrysville artists whose work is on display through the end of the month at area galleries.
“Creativity in research is very important, and I think that taught me to be willing to experiment a lot more in my art,” Maloney said.
A collection of more than a dozen of Maloney's paintings are on display at the East Suburban Artist League's featured gallery in the Murrysville Community Library. His work runs the gamut from landscapes to abstract act.
A collection of artist Bob Bickers' photographs is on display at Gallery Space in the Monroeville Public Library.
Bickers, 60, has been snapping photos since his teenage years, and was inspired by his father.
“He was a shutterbug, and took lots of photographs on family vacations, so it seemed pretty natural to get my own camera,” Bickers said.
His exhibit is made up of landscapes, a subject he has been enamored with since his younger days, when the Bickers family would vacation in the West.
“Back then, you didn't have that many pictures in a roll, and you had to make every one count,” he said. “I focused on good composition, and a lot of the pictures I took in the '70s hold up really well.”
In contrast, Maloney said he is almost never fully satisfied when he finishes up a painting.
“You want something that looks right,” he said. “And if it doesn't, you just keep sort of going at it until it seems right.”
In his abstract art, Maloney said he usually starts with “a strong gesture — a slashing movement or a curve, and I also lean toward vertical lines.”
One of the featured abstract works, “Tree House,” won the People's Choice Award during an East Suburban Artist League multimedia exhibit at Boulevard Gallery in Verona.
Maloney said he loves painting with classical music in the background, usually the strong symphonic character of Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich's work.
“He tried to portray topics like war in his symphonies, and I find that tempo inspiring,” he said.
Bickers takes his camera everywhere he goes, looking to be in the right place at the right time to capture an image that moves him.
“So much of the beauty out there is easily overlooked, whether it's a large landscape or small details of something like a flower,” he said.
Patrick Varine is a staff writer for the Tribune-Review. He can be reached at 724-850-2862 or firstname.lastname@example.org.