Friday, July 31, 2009

Oregon Trail 24x20

The Oregon trail beckoned ever so gently but, convincingly...and I finally gave in. Save for it's depressed economy, cigarette puffing population and non self-serve gas stations Oregon and it's people are a virtual paradise of natural beauty and kind hearted folks. Yellow teeth seen easily through frequent smiles punctuate the landscape and weather extremes we didn't expect greeted us at every turn. I had to pick up the lost remnant (three of our kids were in Or.) or we probably wouldn't have had the reason that precipitated our journey. Anyway, we're all happy and none the worse for it and now that I'm back to work all I can think about is that glorious coast...and heading back up there to do some fishing with Cam. This painting is available for purchase on auction. You can see it by opening the link to the top right for "Link To Art For Sale".

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Shrouded 24x20

Last Sunday was spent in Phoenix. 117 degrees greeted us with a zephyrine slap in the face and a new found appreciation for the coolness of our little gypsy camp here in the shadow of the Catalina mountains in Tucson. The monsoon rains are threatening every afternoon and tarantulas come out to greet us every evening now. The warm west wind (zephyr) reminded me of balmy climes to the south and visions of one of my past lives came reeling through the back roads of my mind as I lay on the hammock gently swinging and softly singing a tune from a foreign land...couldn't help but make this picture of a muted sun shrouded in mist, wrapped in an enigma covered by conundrums...and palm fronds and banana leafs.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Tall Order 36x24

Some people's kids learn to read at age four. Some children are walking at 8 months. Child prodigies abound in our day and accelerated growth and development is what getting ahead in life is all about. No? Well, FYI, the guys who were shaving in junior high go bald in their twenties and die of prostate cancer when they're forty. The early readers all need glasses and some sort of therapy and the Punt,Pass & Kick champions all end up in drug re-hab. I know, it sounds like a bleak scenario but if you're a late bloomer take courage. I'm convinced that those of us who have taken our time to grow up will outlive most of our contemporaries. The oldest man in the world just died at 113. I think I'll pass him by at least five years and my kids...? Well, they learned to talk at age six (before they learned to walk) ...I think they might go for a century and a half. Consider this- Most people suffer that first pang of parental-offspring separation when little Billy is five years old and is sent off to his first day of school. Mom wrings her hands as the big yellow and black box, belching diesel fumes and grinding gears roars away with it's precious cargo. I just experienced that for the first time! My kids are 14 and 16 for Pete's sake,
and here we are, a couple of basket cases wringing our hands and fretting and worrying and the kids will be away for only a couple of weeks. They've been gone just 48 hours and I've already burned up all my allotted text message privileges and cell phone minutes for the month. I think all this is indicative of the long life we are going to live. That said, I plan to make paintings like this for another 60 years or so....If all this fretting doesn't kill me first.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Golden Bow 24x36

We were surrounded on a bald mountain top, rain coming down on every side and lightening cracklin' like Jiffy Pop on a hotplate. Then the bow appeared. There were actually three of them within view and the late light on the Catalinas with the virga coming down and the rain leaking out of the clouds at specific points made for a pretty spectacular scene. For lack of a better word I refer to those patches of rain as sticks. As in "Look at that cool stick of rain coming out of that cloud". I've tried numerous (invented) terms over the years to adequately describe the phenomena and all seem to fall short. It's not a herd of rain. That doesn't work. Neither does patch or shock or pile (though I think "shock of rain" sounds pretty good)...I'm sure there is correct nomenclature for such things. As I'm sure my kids think it's officially called a "stick" of rain. (Even though Marissa, who is the college "brain" in the family, snickers every time I toss out one of my westernisms for public consumption) Anyway, the rain was literally all around us and making the clouds drip and droop in every direction...and nary a drop touched us! (We did get struck by lightening a few times but that was a small price to pay for such a view) This large summertime oil painting is offered at auction this week. See link at top right for all available work.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Skyways 24x30

Pierce through eyes that light blinding
Open wide windows soul searching
Sometimes seeing ever falter
Groping hoping stumbling grasping
Pierce the crystal globes with fire
Burning purified desire
See now clearly ever after
Bright thy vision clean with laughter
Pierce through heart to break the measure
Metered beat set to suffer
Breaking bone and rock and stone
Doubting fearing ever weakening
Pierced and cleaved and rent in two
Bloodless orb pierced anew
Heart of flesh appears now beating
Ever new by love’s soft pleading
Pierce the ears with the symbol
Unstop them now and pierce through deafness
Whispering on the wind soft pleading
Strain to hear the meadow lark
‘Tis the sweetest sort of singing
Ever flirting warbling ringing
Ever let my pain be gone
Pierce my eyes and heart and song
" know Him, the power of His resurrection and...the fellowship of His suffering"

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Bob's pick, My tele

What's that red thing on my forehead? If you're guessing I've converted to Hinduism... you're wrong. Those of you who guessed that this is a guitar pick used by my estranged uncle and his pal Eric Clapton, you're right. A good friend and fellow art aficionado has hung out numerous times on uncle Bob's estate in Malibu...A handful of picks from an evening jam amongst old friends made it's way to him in the aftermath of what can only be described as...indescribable. Marissa proudly wears one on a necklace...The other? I keep it handy in my wallet and pull it out from time to time for effect. Here I'm pictured between sets at a local Fender "fat" tele in sunburst with maple neck sits quietly admiring her master and his headwear.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Sk8 Mountain 24x30

Here's the deal. You either have a ten million dollar camera and some serious training (of which I have neither) or you look back at what were supposed to be beautiful landscape snap-shots and say..."Why did I take that picture?" So were my thoughts a few nights ago when my neighbor, May, whipped out her cell phone as we commented on the awe-inspiring monsoon sky above our heads and clicked off a few rounds. I've learned my lesson. Above is the scene...translated for eternal (almost) posterity on an archival / acid free canvas made with permanent pigment oil paints. Her cell phone "camera" on the other hand...will have some very unremarkable and forgettable images that she will send to a far away grand daughter who will say "Where's grandma in the picture?" Lesson number one- unless you have the above mentioned camera and the photographic moxy to make those landscapes pop, make sure you put friends and family in as many scenes as possible...much more fun to view those in the future than some obscure sky scene over the grand canyon in 1974. Lesson number two- send your pics to me or use them yourself to paint an inspiration that will last a lifetime. This everlasting painting displaying and reflecting eternal goodness in effigy is being offered at auction and, as I've said before, will probably go at a price that will make us shake our heads in wide-eyed wonder in years to come. See link at top right of page for more info.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Sentinal 24x30

Finally, I found the usefulness of My Face and Spacebook (ha). One of the kids signed me up a year or so ago and I'm like..."what up with all these friends inviting me to places I don't know?" I don't have that many friends (In America) and I'm not even that friendly to begin with. (or am I?) And I have no idea how to sign-in to nor do I desire to learn how to navigate another web site. All that cynicism and skeptitude has been washed away this last week or so with some very fun reunions with some very old friends. Again, Carmen and I seem to be the only ones who haven't aged but even in wrinkles and hunched over my old friends look great! My new dilemma is to know just how much of the past twenty five years I can safely divulge without overwhelming them with our rock-star lifestyle. The truth is we have lived a life that would make Indiana Jones shudder in terror and the likes of Captain Kirk and Ernest Hemingway, clamor for our autographs. Well, after having converted several continents and having fought off every imaginable creature and tropical disease known to man, many are left a bit incredulous if not altogether apoplectic at the outrageousness of our stories. You want the truth? Maybe you can't handle the truth. Or maybe that last bought of malaria addled my memory and the bits and pieces all add up to big fantasy. Regardless, it's pretty neat to hear from old the proverb that mentions how refreshing it is to hear good news from a distant land. I dedicate this new misty field painting to friends old and new...Cheers!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Valley Of The Bear 37x49

Go big or go home. In spite of the daunting aspects of painting large...I do like it! This ginormous bad-boy was a real joy to make...should have made a video of this one. Well, my cameraman was busy making stop-motion movies out of Legos and clay and thus, the camera was filled with thousands of little pictures that all looked the same. It'd be great if the kids could parlay their creativity into worthwhile pursuits someday. As it is, they slurk (combination of slink and lurk) around the house looking for costly things to cannibalize (destroy) in their quest to express the most unintelligible, nonsensical gibberish and madness known to man. Is that normal for teenagers? Somebody help me!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Fall 24x36

This started out as an abstract study...first on a 3x4 inch piece of wood. I liked the shapes and color and transferred it to a large 3x5 foot canvas...It was too daunting! So, here it is in a more manageable size. Painting large is not always as easy as it seems. You have to overcome a number of hurdles, not the least of which is the giant blank snowstorm staring you down. I just talked to my friend and fellow painter Mike Mahoney. He is in the process of making a huge mural...something like eight by thirty three feet. Is your living room wall big enough to handle a big ol' monster like that? If it is, your house is a palace need some windows.