Friday, February 23, 2018


                                                      Bryant Woods November watermedia on Yupo 14x11

                                                         Ice Fog Shadow watermedia on Yupo 14x11

 These were my successes over the last couple of weeks, and they came quickly. Others were labored relentlessly with unconvincing results. I wondered if the process with these two forests was nicely fluid through mastery or merely repetitious. My bottom line is simple, do I want to look at what I`ve done? Both of these held my attention. If I floss and brush my teeth looking at the photo of the painting I just did on my phone,  it`s a good sign I made something worthy. So I`m the guy who paints trees, I accept that.

                                                         Mountain Tower watermedia on paper 24x18

 I began this piece still enthralled with my new inks. Everything was a jeweled color for a while but it was looking more like a poster from the 60s than  a landscape. The sky was a vivid pink that I liked for a few hours before realizing how 'cheap' it looked. So one by one my brilliant colors became altered, less intense and more like me. I`m not sure what, if anything, to do next.

                                                         Poplars in a Field watermedia on Yupo 14x11

 I moved on to this motif which had intrigued me 20 years ago. Sauvie Island is one of the few places other than the coast where we can finally see some vast space. No trees or buildings in the way. I tried to remember the experience of painting plein air there in the summer. Wonderful afternoons sitting in the breezy shade, smelling the green and being deeply content. But what I painted seems more like a golf course than the sublime island I love.

 The three amigos show 'Nature Perceived' opened today at the Grants Pass Art Museum. The real party is next Friday the 2nd of March during the community monthly Art Walk. All of the illustrious artists will be present. Hope to see you there!

                                                                      Rose by Elisabeth Cline

 Another friend, Elisabeth Cline, has created a new web page dedicated to showcasing her intensely intimate portraits of roses. They are so sensual, gazing too long seems like an invasion of privacy. Take a look at her remarkable flowers.

                                                                   by Elmer Bischoff

 This is a favorite of mine by the Bay Area Figurative Movements own founding father, Elmer Bischoff. I`m so drawn to this portrait because of the gentle sensitivity of the artist. With a bare minimum of shape, color and line, he gives us a young woman of extraordinary beauty and intelligence. She stands there bearing our stares without any loss of herself. She`s busy thinking. Enlarge the image to see how casually perfect each smudge is in defining the character in her face.
Of the three heavyweights of the movement, he is the least sung. Only now am I curious, and I don`t know why. His thoughtful lyrical paintings often explore the relationships of figures within his paintings and yet they resist a narrative;

                                                                     by Elmer Bischoff

Such a great painter!

 I`m posting a picture of my leg braces to advocate for their effectiveness. John took a photo of me wearing them but it was too real. My isolated knees looked like huge pale raisins. Not pretty. But I want to report how well they work. They are called 'off loaders' and somehow they keep the bones in the knee from banging on each other. Like any medical device, they are ridiculously  expensive. My insurance covered it because John is a nurse and his union won for the nurses a humane reasonable contract. Yay unions!! That being said, I`d imagine there is a healthy market for such mechanical devices that have been used. Once the problem is solved, no one is going to even want to see these anymore. They are making a dramatic difference for me now as I wait for a new surgery.

                                                           the happy Alexander Calder home

 Here is a photo essay of the protean sculptor Alexander Calder`s home and studio. He knew how to have the best life possible by making things. That`s the secret right there. It`s not acquiring stuff but creating new things that causes happiness.

work for sale in my studio


Libby Fife said...


I have been lucky enough to see some of Elmer Bischoff's work in person at the Crocker in Sacramento. It is quietly powerful.

All of your tree pieces appeal to me. It's because I think you have so internalized those landscapes. They aren't just renditions of photos, you know? And I liked the last two also. The green and blue of Spring/Summer is really hard I think. There is nothing to soften it. I didn't get golf course necessarily but again got an "otherworldly" place which i always like.

Good luck with your show. The leg braces look a little scary but I am glad they offer relief. There is some issue with medical devices and equipment and the second hand market. The initial purchase is ridiculously expensive, out of many people's reach, and then stuff can't always be resold easily. (Insurance coverage? Medicare/Medicaid issues?)) I do know that things are screwed up.

Keep at it! I hope you are well:)

Maggie Emm said...

you paint the spirit of trees...Iron Man!

Donna Thibodeau said...

We have a stash of old medical devices “just in case”. I recently found and used my old ankle brace during a flare up. You hate it now but you could love it again if needed.

I could just gush on about how much I love your work. I love the trees and the skies. I can’t choose. I'd love ro see a demo someday. How do you do it? It is so soft edged and ethereal for watermedia on yupo.

Taylor said...

Very beautiful and inspirational. I love your art. Thank you!