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Spent last night in Clearfield, PA.

Small, lively Appalachian town on a river just about 3 miles past the summit (Highest point east of the Mississippi) on Interstate 80.

We drove around town and visited a few shops, including the local Wal-Mart. I decided to check out the nursery. I wanted to see if they had Red Bud Trees and how far north they would grow. That’s how I met Deb. This nursery manager was a proud riot. Very proud of her Wal-Mart. Been working there since it opened just over 17 years ago. It was the first Super Wal-Mart in Pennsylvania and she’s worked in most departments.

I learned more about Wal-Mart in ten minutes from her than anywhere else or with anyone else at all!

She told me her stories.

And through her stories, I learned about her life, her love for Wal-Mart and that she was an artist that painted rocks.

I own one of her rocks now.

Actually, it’s not just a rock or a painting on a rock I own.

I own a story. I own the right to tell anyone a 20-minute story about the artist who painted the rock. And that’s why the rock sits in my curio cabinet tonight.

Now I never went into Wal-Mart to buy a rock, or even a painting.. But she changed my mind without asking me to buy anything. She just shared and through that sharing, I wanted to own the painted rock so that Deb will be a part of my life from now on.

As artist, realize that your customers want to know your story behind the painting.

Sometimes, the story itself, is the only persuader you need to sell a painting.