Thursday, December 13, 2012

...hands as tools.

Some things can only be done by hand. Hands make, bake, rake. They grow pyramids at Giza and big heads on Easter Island. Murals from Bonampak to the Sistine Chapel are by done by hand. Every masterpiece and classic rock song was made and played by hand. Being hand-made reflects authenticity.
Strawberries are picked by hand.
No gizmo or computer or robot or mechanized system will ever replace the most sophisticated tool available: the hand of the worker. This is the worlds most valuable yet undervalued and exploited resource.
I think about the hand and the dreams of those who work with them daily.
Here's one 24"x48" painting in progress from my laborers series.

Monday, December 3, 2012

...stop the war on art!

The War on Art?
It was never declared officially but the war on art is really a war on things made by hand. Things that take time and experience and craftsmanship and artfulness to make. Things with patina. Things with tool marks. Things with brushstrokes!
Things that are not born on an assembly line in China. Things that are not obsolete in a month or two years. Things that are not destined for a landfill or floating debris vortexes in the Pacific Ocean.
Perhaps it's a war on spirit more than art. Because true art lifts the spirit and is born from the spirit of an artist. Artists love the process. It's a vehicle for channeling emotions, ideas and values. The result is the shared gift known as dance, poetry, song, painting...
Oddly enough, the war on art is sometimes an inside job. Because art is not really elitist and unaffordable and available only to those with bucks.
Small bucks can make magic!
Make some magic happen at your local art studio. You'll be glad you did and so will the artist.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

...five recent sketches.

A quintet from recent sketches that I make daily. Today it rained.

Monday, November 19, 2012


Anonymous shrubs in conversations unheard....

Saturday, November 17, 2012


Finding something different on my walk was the goal and the fish market on Clement Street is rich with possibilities. My choice was a small inshore fish called a pampano which graciously posed for a couple of acrylic studies.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

...straw men.

This is the first lay-in of one of four paintings in my studio depicting scenes of agricultural labor. This one is based upon a berry harvest forty miles south on the coast near Pescadero.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Lone Jimador.

Early last Tuesday morning I installed the Lone Jimador painting at Copita Restaurant in Sausalito. The artwork is now finished and will seldom be alone at this popular tequileria. Im grateful to have had the opportunity to honor the blue agave harvest with my creative interpretation. I look forward to the possibility of exploring other harvests worldwide. But first I'm completing a series of large coastal harvests that will be completed by year end. Back to work!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

jimador project

The current project on my wall is inspired by the sense of having integrity for solitary work well done.
We are who we are when no one else is around. Our actions are the signature on the painting that is our day or life. The byline is as real as a writer's. It's as true in the field as it is in the studio.
These charcoal and color studies are the final result of many compositions considered.
Distillation has led to one image and one worker in a field of blue agave trimming the piƱa with his razor-sharp tool the coa.
I hope to convey the importance of doing one thing well, the ripple effect of that act and especially in solitude.
The painting in progress is 5'x 6' and will be installed in Copita Restaurant in Sausalito in late October.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

...doing lines.

Walking into the stream of consciousness accompanied by pen and sketchbook.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

'of all things visible and invisible'

These three photos show my most recent painting commission during its last moments in my care: freshly varnished, patiently waiting and then coming fully into bloom on the eager waiting wall.

Monday, June 18, 2012

...a man can dream can't he?

I stopped to take photos of this massive driftwood while on a beach run with a good friend when an elder beachcomber joined us for the moment and asked,
"What are you doing?"
I replied in jest,
"We're thinking of taking this home and making a coffee table."
He said with a smile,
"A man can dream can't he?"
His response was exactly what we needed to hear that morning and continues to resonate today.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

...kelp mandala mural concept.

Designed to grace a big wall in the outer Sunset District, this concept of the kelp mandala is based upon the mounds of seaweed that sometimes punctuate the shoreline of Ocean Beach here on San Francisco's west side. Kelp forests exist as a vital underwater ecosystem and are usually broken up by surging tides and stormy seas. Once on shore these mounds are fascinating labyrinths of amber and green knots that have captured my imagination since childhood. The shoreline is a daily mecca for me and the kelp mandala represents its spiritual significance.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

...tropical triptych.

Luscious flowers, volcanoes and prehistoric hummingbirds....every painting should have them.

Thursday, May 10, 2012


Several recent random sketches that accompany my journaling...