Free Range #4: Entrance

07/22/2015

Odometer: 179.8 mi

Last one from my home territory. Hitting the road tomorrow a.m. Huge thanks to everyone that has made suggestions, requests, and commitments for the pieces I’ll be painting each day of this trip. You have all helped make this trip possible and you have my gratitude. I’ll try not to blow it. 


Free Range #3: Maybe Later

07/21/2015

Odometer 149.6 miles

Got a little sidetracked already. Trying to get just the right angle to paint from the van for the previous painting, my front bumper just grazed the railing on the roadside… and promptly broke, bent, and dislodged itself halfway off. Not wanting to spend this whole drive wondering if it would fall off completely, I figured I should take care of it sooner than later. Fortunately this all happened very close to home, making things simple. But in the rush of taking care of business to begin the real road trip down the state, this little funky one is, all I could muster up. Looking forward to points south soon, hopefully tomorrow. 


Free Range #2: Leeward

07/20/2015

Odometer: 75.4 miles

I often paint right out the back or side of my van, literally standing up inside the thing, enjoying the shade and windblock it provides. The added elevation gain is a nice bonus as well, and sometimes it’s the only reason I paint from in there. On this day it was all three. Bright and windy, and if I stood on the ground outside I just couldn’t see over the bushes in the foreground. I know it only adds about two feet or so, but that can make all the difference.

Sometimes I get a bit picky and want to position the van just so, getting the perfect view out the door. This one was just past a large parking area as it narrowed back on to the road. It took a bit of positioning to get the view without blocking the road at all. Due to the tight squeeze, I was parked right up against the roadside guard rail.

It all worked out great until it was time to go. Somehow an edge of my bumper got caught on a spot where two railings overlapped. As I pulled away it just about ripped the front of the van off. That might be an exaggeration, but still, it was beyond me to fix it. Had to take it to a body shop later to sort that one out.


Free Range #1: Waiting for the Day to Warm Up

07/19/2015

Odometer: 0.00 miles

Kicking off the tour of California’s coast with some river time near the Oregon Border. Mornings have a bit of a chill that make swimming sound a little better… later. Like after this quick painting. Took a four hour swim with the family up the river right after this one. 


Time Zone # 2

07/14/2015

Plein air, but with a twist.

Traditional plein air work involves working fast to give an impression of the place at a particular time of day. The changing nature of light throughout a day limits the working time for a single session so larger pieces usually involve multiple sessions returning to the same location at the same time on different days.

This Timezone series is a slow cooking experiment in painting larger works in single sessions over a longer period, all day even, while still remaining true to the traditional plein air ethos. Each vertical band represents a different “timezone” painted quickly to reflect the light conditions of that fleeting moment.


Passing Through V

07/10/2015

Painted live for a friend’s going away party gift. These passing through series pieces represent something very simple for me: the movement of energy through any medium. I painted the first one live at a music festival in southern Humboldt while on my home from San Francisco. Just passing through. Something resonated with that one and I’ve done several more since then. In this case the vertical bands in the piece seem to me like periods of a person’s life, where significant life-changing events happen, new chapters are begun but the same vitality of life keeps flowing through from one to the next. Ok. That is all. Robin from HumBrews, I wish you the best in your next chapter.


Airwaves

07/09/2015

Painted live on the radio?
Yep, live radio.

KHUM with Mike Dronkers in the KHUM studio in Ferndale, CA.  Huge thanks to @mikedronkers and @khumradio for letting this happen. If you squint your eyes and stand on your head and sip an IPA while viewing this one you’ll clearly see Mike spinning tunes from the control booth at KHUM on his 7th to last radio show here. We’re gonna miss this guy.


Time Zone # 1

07/06/2015

Plein air, but with a twist.

Traditional plein air work involves working fast to give an impression of the place at a particular time of day. The changing nature of light throughout a day limits the working time for a single session so larger pieces usually involve multiple sessions returning to the same location at the same time on different days.

This Timezone series is a slow cooking experiment in painting larger works in single sessions over a longer period, all day even, while still remaining true to the traditional plein air ethos. Each vertical band represents a different “timezone” painted quickly to reflect the light conditions of that fleeting moment.


Passing Through IV

07/04/2015

“Freedom doesn’t exist out there, real freedom is within…” that was a passing thought while painting this one in full art hobo mode operating in a small shady alley in the beautiful town of Ferndale, CA on the fourth of July this year. Pretty random. I think I was trying to paint the American flag, but something went a bit sideways… I can only guess what the townsfolk thought of the hairy hobo arting out water rainbows in their alley during their patriotic street party. Nobody told me to leave so I’m calling it a win.


Out of Sight, Out of Mind



06/01/2015

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t hide from a helicopter and duck for cover in the bushes by the train tracks twice on my way to get this view. Graffiti guys deal with this sort of thing all the time, plein air guys not so much. That was fun.

Sounds like its been an intense week for folks that live here and love and care for this coast. Another oil spill is just another example of how the cost of living our lives plays out in many ways.

Big thanks to my friends Guner, John, Mike, and Chris for all the Intel and access logistics.


Beautiful from Here



06/01/2015

 Always dug the graphic road vibes on this one. There may or may not have been boats anchored just to the left of the frame cleaning up* an oil spill from a busted pipe on the side of the highway. Either way, the color if the water in this little cove was incredible.

*or just dumping poisonous dispersant in the water to break up the oil and put it out of sight, out of mind. I hope I heard that wrong.


Then They Took Him Away



05/30/2015

Who wrote this book of etiquette?

All of the pages are blank
As though the ink has spilled right off the paper
Leaving us to write our own rules with pencils
And skin
And burning eyes

After reading from cover to cover we are left
Just as we were before
Somewhat crude
And still rather unrefined


Standing Watch

05/19/2015

We’ve rounded the corner now
We’ve found
The hole in the fence
We’ve crossed that line
And conceived
Of new horizons
Now we stand watching
And
Waiting
For
The old roads
To wash into the sea


Architecture of Flow

05/08/2015

This was a recent live art piece I did to benefit the surf and skate club at Trinidad School. I had a few buddies and a handful of kids skating past my paint table and grabbing brushes to drag across the canvas set up a few yards away, then circle back to relay another pass. Did that for 20 or 30 passes or so then went to work building the painting on the architecture of flow they had laid out. 


Stage Left

04/25/2015

Painted live from start to finish during one solid set from Absynth Quartet at Redwood Curtain Brewery last Saturday. This was the second event I painted at on Saturday. Never done two of these in a single day before, but I guess they don’t take too long so why not?


In a Mood

02/18/2015

Some days are better than others for curiously overheated gas station coffee
Made with the press of a button


Something Fishy

02/17/2015

With a bucket full of mackerel, he explained why the water was a fancy shade of green.
The fancy cats that live in the rocks were only green with envy.


Bending Lines

02/16/2015

You know those painters you see outside on sunny days with their fancy umbrellas, leisurely painting away on the manicured park lawn? I don’t know if they’ve spent much
time in the coastal zone.

I recently got one of those fancy umbrellas for myself. Seemed like a great idea at the time. I even got one that was silver on top to reflect heat and black underneath to
reduce glare, and with about 87 different clamp options to attach to nearly anything. It really is a marvel of modern engineering.

And it’s basically worthless. I used it as I was painting this one on a beautiful windless day until what I’d call a very light breeze finally came up, not much, but magnified by the cliff-face beneath me, and that thing warped itself into all manners of hideous misshapes and bending lines, an origami of umbrellic obscenities, threatening to topple my whole easel and send it down the cliff. I will not be using it again.

On the brighter side, I really like how this turned out and solved a nagging visual problem, using simple horizontal strokes to define bending lines of swell.

Now that is something I will use again.

-Entry on February 16, 2015


Winter Sun

02/15/2015

We’ve spent long days here
North of the river

We’ve spent
Our last two dimes
On
Heaven
And waffles
And a good night’s sleep
Sheltered
From the falling snow
Until the storm blew over

And now we ourselves
Are spent
Worn out
Like the two
Ragged
Dog blankets
In the back of the van

One more look at the ocean
Before we head home
And two things
Become clear

We’re not going home tonight
And
We’re gonna smell like dog
In the morning


Vicarious

12/04/2014

Unplanned live art from The Accident Lab poetry event last night. Kinda different, maybe someone will dig it… or maybe not. I might be stuck with this one.