21 November 2012

Caliente free range

Prismacolor©  pencils in sketchbook
On the way to Walker Basin, off the 58, between General Beale Highway and Bodfish, lies the off-road territory of Caliente.  The geography consists of untamed spectacular pine peaks, death defying cliffs and tight old growth Oak canyons where the cattle are free range, i.e.; no fences, very much at home wherever they feel like hanging out in any particular season of the year, day or night.  Its rather like a safari park, they wander across the sole road, the rare vehicle completely out of context, but should you happen to be out exploring, they will saunter right up and ask you, with gentle Cow curiosity, who are you?

11 November 2012

NE Workshop

NE Workshop as seen from kitchen window

I keep coming across works that were never displayed here, living in my portfolio unseen.  Now is as good a time as any to share them.  (Either that or they were left out of the recent gallery revision, another likely possibility.)  This one is California, Fall 04.  You can tell its Fall by the pattern of leafless Oak branches.  It always caught my eye while washing dishes.  Art is everywhere.

18" x 24" watercolor inks on Arches

07 November 2012

Iona Jade making pancakes

Iona Jade making pancakes

I was the fortunate recipient of this photograph four years ago, this very month.  You can tell from this one photo alone, choosing and celebrating life is written all over her being as she is an angel daughter of Jah though the blessed vessel of Susana.

link for this post:  Iona chooses to stay

This is what is really good about the internet, for all its frivolous absurdity, we can watch a beautiful South African child grow up and love her as if she was our own.

06 November 2012

Miner's Lettuce on River Rock

transparent watercolor on Arches

Loves shade, especially abundant at the base of old growth trees.
Mowed down as weeds in grass.
Ground critters favorite.

River Rock, the psychedelic stepping stone.

Spa in Heaven

tub in space time continuum, 14" x 20" watercolor inks on Arches

Taking a bath in July at the painted cabin you built for just such moments.  Soundtrack of Raven and Hawk on the wing, warm summer breeze caressing your skin, trustworthy food in the larder, acoustic guitar, bamboo wind chimes and pan pipes.

20 October 2012

Flannelbush Road

Flannelbush Road, watercolor on Arches, 16" x 12" 
This place had a mystery about it.  When one pasture was completely mowed, cattle were moved in to clean this one and then another.  It keeps the fire fuels under control which I saw during a swiftly moving brush fire nearby and saves the land from overgrazing.  The mystery part is no one really thought it was all that beautiful, especially not worthy of a painter's effort.  I supposed this is because just over that hill, there is a panoramic view that extends for perhaps 50 miles, with graduating lavender blue mountain mists, a valley, lowing cattle, the checkerboard of crops, etc.  But the vision in the painting is one of those places with a little turnout where one could stop and  linger and feel the season on your body and listen to the wind.  All those times I spent there in non doing was in honor to the simplicity and sanity of Nature.  The paved edge in the forefront of this view is lined with overhanging Flannelbush, a flowering tree that survived the Pleistocene over 15 million years ago.  The fire stopped abruptly at the Flannelbush tree.

06 October 2012

Sodabox at High Noon

18" x 24" watercolor on Arches

This one's for William Carlos Williams 

so much depends 


a red wheel barrow 

glazed with rainwater 

beside the white 


04 March 2012

For Hot Springs Wizard

With my CD portfolio and physical portfolios packed up safely during the relocation process, the only way I can ensure a seamless link to get a photo to Mister Wizard is post it here.
Glacial Incidental vacations at Sunrise Mountain | Watercolor and Prismacolor pencil mix on Arches |  24" x 18" | 2007-08

The original work in reality is large for a watercolor, owned and on display in my hostess's office building in Las Vegas, which is a real live busy U.S. city in spite of its famed casino scene.  Its an efficient place, a metaphor for life in the 21st Century where vehicular accidents are instantly removed from the beltway by the time long ribbons of slowed traffic resumes its ceaseless going to and coming from leaving a sort of empty space where something ... happened.

The objects illustrated in the artwork are rocks collected with a student geology major while taking a desert sabbatical in Nevada in 2006, brought back to California the same year where they were expanded by the inclusion of a distinctly egg-shaped, smooth surfaced - unusual and rare (most of them are piles of huge boulders above ground or discovered on seafloors and lakebeds) Glacial Incidental, which is what these granite and limestone boulders and boulder-spawn left over from the Pleistocene are called.  Smoothness and roundness of the GI is not a common feature at all.  Think of the battering and long distances these rocks and boulders were pushed from the seacoast far inland as the oceans rose up and traveled eastward.

Now, back in Nevada five years later to the day, which that in itself is interesting, how cyclical the journey is, I come to find the Nevadian rock collection to perfectly resemble the exact mountains where each was gathered. Hmmmm.

07 January 2012

Wander This World

WTW: 16" x 12" watercolor on Arches 2012
To view enlarged, right click image to open in a new tab.
 Rewind to 2010.  One day we will look back on that year and wish we were still so free and easy.  Meanwhile, this memory came from a panorama of digitals taken while waiting for the tow to pick us up, me and the rock-buggy. It was, as you can figure out, a very long wait since they were coming from a faraway town veering into the empty, meandering desert, aka, the middle of nowhere.  But there was a lot of ground to cover, strange vibes, the bizarro oxymoron of a huge cattle corral next to the tracks leading to a decrepit slaughterhouse in the heart of the Central Valley, aka Breadbasket of the World.  You might have seen some of the photos from that trip, I was calling it Breakdown in the Badlands back then.
In reality, this is another part of a decade long series that begins with Transmontane, We Come with the Dust and Go with the Wind, All Things Must Pass and includes Hell for Bad Cows, Oranges Everywhere and many more. And yes, there really are many more to come because the one thing that keeps me in this state filled with self-proclaimed fruits and nuts is the scenery, ancient because it became what it is today before we were even a thought in our parents' child minds. What it was - is not what it is - anymore, but there are still  plenty of parts around the 'hood where distant night drums carry spirits.  I wonder what those spirits are feeling when they see what the white man has wrought?  Rather than presume what spirits feel, feeling what we really feel is being open to receiving the spirits' messages.  It is an ominous beat with an uplifting bridge.

When the jeep started a little rattle under the hood, I was told I'd thrown a rod and was especially irritated because I would not be able to finish listening to Johnny Lang's, a rockin', then 17 year-old Minnesota bluesman's CD: Wander This World.  A full year and a half later, I hear it all the time and love it still.  Genius with heart.

... I'm like a ghost some people can't see
Others drive by and stare
A shadow that drifts by the side of the road
It's like I'm not even there

And I'll wander this world, wander this world
Wander this world, wander this world all alone

Well I've never been part of the game
The life that I live is my own
All that I know is that I was born
To wander this world all alone, all alone ...