Archive | Day Trips

“Mushroom Hunting”

Medium: Acrylic on Canvas
Size: 20″ x 16″
Year: 2017

Notes:

They sit motionless, watching passively. Not engaged in the passage of time like you or I, yet not outside of it either.

We travel the world, searching for new experiences, new understandings of what it is to be alive.

They watch us come and go and always return again to their steady gaze, changed, yet somehow always the same. They have no need for comings and goings, yet they do not mock us. They know better. They have seen enough to know that our days are short, unlike theirs.

They’ve seen our births, they’ve seen our joys, our fears, our love, and our tears. They’ve seen us wed, and they’ve seen our blood shed, by hate, by sorrow, by intoxication, by miscalculation. They’ve seen our recreation, our red tape, our revolutions. They’ve seen our wars, our battles, our nobles, our scoundrels. They’ve seen us die. They’ve seen our burials, our burning bodies, our ashes scattered amongst them.

This is their secret, knowing without any effort, that if they wait a little longer, they will see it all.

If you are still, and you can hear the silence between the rumbling oceans, you just might even hear them sing. Each has a different voice, one loud, one soft, one strong, one deep, one high, one low, and one with voice of our Grandmother.

“The Day Before the Rain #1”

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Medium: Acrylic on Canvas
Size: 12″ x 12″ (tryptic)
Year: 2017

“The Day Before the Rain #2”

 

Medium: Acrylic on Canvas
Size: 12″ x 12″ (tryptic)
Year: 2017

“The Day Before the Rain #3”

Medium: Acrylic on Canvas
Size: 12″ x 12″ (tryptic)
Year: 2017

“After a Long, Dark Winter”

Medium: Acrylic on Canvas
Size: 20″ x 16″
Year: 2017

Field Notes:
After months of winter darkness soaking us all well and truly, we finally had a nice weekend of bright spring sun. And of coarse that would happen to be the one weekend I had booked on the calendar months ago to perform my live art nonstop at a weekend long music festival. This entire glorious weekend of sun would be spent indoors, having a great time and all, but still… indoors.

Nuts.

But then came Monday, it was all over, everyone was back to work, school, and all that and the sun was still with us for at least another morning by all appearances. Managed to sneak out and paint this one in the brightness of midday before the blue sky hazed over gray.

After a weekend of painting with nonstop live music, practically more as a form of dance than typical visual art, with nothing to reference but time, rhythm, and melody, it sure was refreshing to get back to earth for a spell. Thank you California, I love you.

“Off in the Distance”

Medium: Acrylic on Canvas
Size: 20″ x 16″
Year: 2017

Field Notes:
We had some good sunny weather a few days ago, and I got it in my head that I’d go up to Trinidad, to the top of the headland there and paint the view looking north. I had the exact vantage point in my mind with vertical rock faces framing one side of the painting but deep atmospheric distance plummeting away up the coast on the other. It would take some scrambling to get all my gear to the little zone with the view, but nothing too problematic. Well… except for the wind. I was just so excited to see a clear sky forecast after all the rain, that I ran out without thinking of that pesky wind factor. Needless to say, it was a no go. Howling north winds were slamming full force into the promontory I wanted to perch upon. I figured since I live around here, I can always come back on a calmer day and kept going around the leeward side of the head to see what views were on offer on this winter afternoon.

I’d thought of doing a studio piece from this perspective years ago, I even have a file full of images taken with a zoom lens to get this unusual angle of one of my favorite surf zones. I never considered painting it in plein air as the entire frame of the composition is only about two finger widths at arms length due to the distance across Trinidad bay. Not a lot of visual information to work with, a rather flat atmosphere (again due to everything in the painting being a long distance away), and a really awkward compositional problem with no real foreground to work with made this one a bigger challenge than I had expected. I could have included some plants from the side of the trail I was on and peering over, but thought it would distract from this near aerial perspective, so instead I just hammed up the swell lines and foam trails in the water down there to give the eye a bit of enjoyment down there.

While I did have higher hopes for this one (I think I always do for all of them), I am pretty stoked to have come away with a different perspective of a familiar spot.

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