Fault Lines


Artwork Notes:

5th day on the road, 15th painting completed, 2nd one this day

I’ve scouted around this cove a few times over the years, looking for an angle to paint this place, but never bothered to find a way out onto the cliffs that overlook it. Glad I finally did, I could spend weeks painting out here. What really stands out up here is the geological forces that have shaped this cove. I believe the San Andreas fault line runs right through it, and I was drawn to the linear elements of the scene before me.

Its a bit of a trek from the road to get out here when packing an art studio on your back, often hunting views on game trails through tall grass that had me tucking my pant legs into my socks and checking for ticks religiously. I was relieved to never see a single one, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t thinking of those little bloodsuckers nearly the whole time.

When I was nearly finished with this one, some ladies came walking by on the nearby trail. They stopped to chat and quickly made note of the waves I may have added on this flat summer day. Then they wanted to know where I was from, and who I was with, and let me know they noticed my van back at the carpark. I felt that I had to assure them I was alone, not part of a group and not connected to any other artists that have passed through these parts after the general grilling I received.

Maybe I read them wrong, but they sure seemed to be putting out some territorial vibes in that short conversation. But I understand, they live in a very small town, in a very beautiful place, in a state whose coast is being bought and sold at an alarming rate. Protectionism isn’t all their fault. It’s also their virtue.

-Matt Beard




Artwork Information:


Artwork Title: "Fault Lines"
Original Size: 20" x 16"
Medium: Acrylic on Canvas
Year Painted: 2017

Additional Artwork Information:


Method: Plein Air
Date Painted: 07/15/2017
Region: The California Coast > Northern California > Mendocino
Road Trip: Mendocino/Sonoma 2017

Artwork Logistics:


Miles Hiked: 1-2 Miles
Geological Hazards: Steep or Unstable Cliffs
Botanical Hazards: Some Poison Oak Observed
Biological Hazards: High Grass- Tick Country!
Anthropological Hazards: Sketchy Human Interactions


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