Retired after a long career as a financial analyst, Buckhead artist Leon Borchers now has a studio in his home and says he’s “living his dream.”

“I was always interested in art, but never took the time to paint until after I retired,” he said. “I put it off for 40 years.”

Drawing a parallel between his career and his art-making, Borchers said he is driven by the same traits that helped him succeed in the business world—a meticulous eye for detail, a deep sense of planning and a dose of self-discipline. And yet, he is quick to admit he paints just for his own pleasure.

Leon Borchers

He spends several days each week in his home studio just for the fun of it and refers to his craft “as a wonderful pastime.”

“I just enjoy the moment,” he said.

After taking some classes and working with a mentor, Borchers joined the Buckhead-based Atlanta Artists Center about 10 years ago and began exhibiting his work. But he emphasized that most of the time he ends up either donating his paintings to charity or giving them away as gifts to his friends.

It has been the ability to unleash his creativity to fill in the gap between life before and after retirement that has added color to his life.

Borchers and fellow AAC members, who also belong to the AAC’s Tuesday Sketch Group, are showing “Charismatic Characters” at the Buckhead Branch of the Fulton County Public Library System through May 10.

“Annie in Red Hat,” is one of Borchers’ oil-on-paper pieces in the exhibit.  Fellow AAC member Jane Springfield said she was “struck by the elegance” of the painting. Long-time AAC volunteer Cheryl D’Amato agreed. “This is a poster-esque painting of a striking, elegant female form,” D’Amato said.

Sandy Springs artist Clara Blalock said the piece showed “a wonderful movement around the canvas.” She also found the image intriguing. “Is this lady waiting for a train or sitting in a hotel lobby?” Blalock posed. “What is her story?”

–Martha Nodar

“Annie in a Red Hat”
What:  “Charismatic Characters” a portrait exhibit by AAC members of the Tuesday Sketch Group

Where: Buckhead Public Library

269 Buckhead Avenue, Atlanta 30305

Ph. 404-814-3500

When:  Now through May 10

Open Reception: April 16, 2:30 p.m.-4:30 p.m.,  Community Room.

Free

What:  “Charismatic Characters” a portrait exhibit by AAC members of the Tuesday Sketch Group

Where: Buckhead Public Library

269 Buckhead Avenue, Atlanta 30305

Ph. 404-814-3500

When:  Now through May 10

Open Reception: April 16, 2:30 p.m.-4:30 p.m.,  Community Room.

Free

What:  “Charismatic Characters” a portrait exhibit by AAC members of the Tuesday Sketch Group

Where: Buckhead Public Library

269 Buckhead Avenue, Atlanta 30305

Ph. 404-814-3500

When:  Now through May 10

Open Reception: April 16, 2:30 p.m.-4:30 p.m.,  Community Room.

Free