WINTER SPIRIT CAMP FACILITATOR - The son of a “preacher man,” Daniel (Freeman) Speaks was born in South Ozone Park, Queens NY and grew up mostly in Saint Albans, Queens NY. Both his parents, originally from the old segregated south were evangelical missionaries who instilled in him a feral sense of the gospel. After leaving home at the age sixteen, seeking his truth and path in New York City, he found an education on life, love, and luck. What followed was trial and tribulation, but, ironically, it was romantic heartbreak not religiosity that seared his consciousness in 2003. Bereft and forlorn because of limerence, it was God who spoke to him and simply said “paint”. This newly discovered gift launched him into a kaleidoscope of healing and giving of his time and talent became his passionate calling. A mixture of avant-garde and postmodernism, abstract art, photography, and painting nature in its raw form is what moves him. Daniel’s work is not to be categorized, understood, or even misunderstood. It is simply to be taken in like one would take in the breath of a new day. An autodidactic painter his work lacks the pretentiousness and self-reverence with those aligned with this or that “school”. Instead, what one gets is a feeling of lightheadedness from viewing his work, not a feeling of heavy handedness. Not shock and awe but a feeling of meditation and serenity is at the core of his painting. He found peace through painting after the agony of unrequited love and he strives to bring you along to his personal redemptive Eden. As a certified decorative artist and self taught landscape and nature painter, he continues to use new mediums to inspire and encourage through the arts. He resides in Harlem, NYC.