Sunsets in California have to be some of the most beautiful found anywhere in the world. The combination of great light, pacific storms and the sun setting over the vast ocean make for a great combination at times. View more from the California coast here.
All the latest ScaneLife posts.
It's been a while since I've posted but after a productive summer of focusing on paintings from the "Houses" series I'm starting up the "Image of the Week" again. These images are from a recent trip to Disney Concert Hall with an old friend Georges Le Chevallier. Georges and I met in a painting class and became great friends. Not long after graduating he moved to the east coast and we've only seen each other a handful of times over the last 25 years. But a few weeks ago I got a Facebook message that he would be visiting from North Carolina for one day. So I dropped everything and spent a few hours hanging out with my old friend. It's been 15 years since he was here in California and he wanted to see the Frank Gehry designed concert hall, so after a lunch stop at Philippe french dip, we headed over and spent the afternoon checking it out.
To see more images of the Disney Concert Hall check them out HERE.
Also, check out Georges site HERE.
Todays Image of the Week is from a day trip we took this past weekend to the Channel Islands. From Ventura in Southern California you can catch a boat to several of the Channel Islands which are off the coast between Santa Barbara and Los Angeles. Unlike Catalina Island ( closer to LA ) the Channel Islands are mostly uninhabited nature reserves that have native species of plants and animals found nowhere else. Santa Cruz Island is the easiest to travel to being about an hour boat ride. Once there you can hike, rent kayaks, scuba dive or stay a few nights at one the camp grounds. There are really no amenities on any of these islands so you have to bring everything you will need.
Todays image-s of the week are from this past weekend. On Friday I went on a 5 hour hike up Harding Canyon with a friend. The canyon is located in the Cleveland National Forest of Southern California. It was a fun hike even though it was fairly hot and there was a lot of poison oak along the trails. Luckily the stream is almost dry so we were able to use it when the paths were too overgrown. The water that remains in the stream is full of newts and the occasional snake ( not sure which kind ). We also saw several signs of Mountain Lions including paw prints and claw marks near the stream. This hike is probably best during the early spring when the stream has more water and it's a bit cooler. I'm not sure what kind of flowers these are so if you know leave a comment - thanks!
Wednesdays Image of the Week - Fossil. Taken this past summer in Switzerland this view from the top of Mt. Pilatus overlooks the Swiss Alps. The trip to the top can be made by aerial gondola or the worlds steepest cogwheel train. We took the gondola on the way up and the cogwheel train to get down. There's a hotel and visitor center with restaurants and gift shops but the best part is obviously the views and trails you can walk once you are there.
Fridays Image of the Week - a painting from the new series of work titled Houses. I started this body of work with the idea that I would work purely from imagination and memories of houses that have been of importance to me throughout my life. Places I have lived, family and friends homes and even places I have admired but have no relation to. They are not meant to be literal interpretations of the actual houses but more of a visual note of the memories and feelings I have of these places. These paintings are also studies of form and composition. Through the use of a very limited palette for each of the works, I am able to play with the subtleties that can be created with just a couple of hues in relation to one another. Typically each painting consists of only 2-3 hues from a certain color family ( example a warm blue and a cool blue ) along with black and white to create tints and shades.
Also, a BIG Thank You to everyone who participated in the ScaneLife Bday Celebration - I hope you are enjoying your new works. Have a great weekend!
Mondays Image of the Week - Channels. There are 2 main channels that run through parts of Huntington Beach starting at the coast and working there way several miles inland. They are basically flood channels for storms, high tides and tsunamis. One is the Huntington Beach Channel and the other is the Talbert Channel. I live near both of them and have passed them walking and driving hundreds if not thousands of times. I've always thought there was something interesting about them even though they are not particularly attractive. So I've started a series of photographs to explore their "interesting" qualities. Check out the California Gallery to see more from this series.
Also, don't forget there are only a couple days left to take advantage of the ScaneLife Bday celebration!
Mondays Image of the Week - My studio with a look at some new works from the "House" series.
Todays image of the week is from the Camargue in southern France. The Camargue is a large wetland area just south of Arles. It is home to over 400 species of birds including these Greater Flamingos and the famous Camargue white horses. The area has a kind of "cowboy culture" as it has been used for cattle, specifically fighting bulls, and farming for centuries.
*Just a reminder, this image as well as every image on ScaneLife is for sale as part of the month long "Bday Celebration". Check out the Home page to find out details.
Wednesdays Image of the Week is of a commissioned desk that I made. For the design I wanted something simple and strong that showed off the contrasts and similarities of the materials - bamboo plywood and walnut. The top is constructed from 3/4" thick bamboo plywood and forms a box that houses 2 walnut drawers. The legs and supports are also made from solid walnut and the whole piece is finished with several coats of a hand rubbed oil/varnish to bring out the natural color and beauty of the woods.
Good Monday! This shot of a Japanese Maple was taken at the Descanso Gardens in La Cañada Flintridge, California.
Todays image of the week was taken in Arezzo Italy in the summer of 2013. This photo of the Tower of Comune di Arezzo and artist Kaarina Kaikkonen's work was on of the pieces for a city wide art exhibition - the ICASTICA 2013 International Women's Art Biennial.
Following up on Wednesdays image, here is one of the first paintings from my Donkey series. This series was started in 1996 after I had lived for a short time in Puerto Rico. I originally started this body of work with what would later become the Wall series in mind. These works feature the downtrodden and lowly donkey. Not an animal one considers grandiose such as a horse or lion, tiger or bear but mearly a simple ass. Yet without this beast of burden working alongside humans for nearly five thousands years, humanity would be a much different thing. The first donkey caravans laid the groundwork for todays globalization and were the first highways and "internet" of it's day, spreading goods, ideas and cultural exchanges to the civilizations they connected.
Here's a familiar face. This photo was taken last summer while in Italy. We took our daughter to the Pombia Safari Park in northern Italy and came across this guy. As you might know I'm pretty familiar with donkeys but this is the first time I've seen an albino one.
This image was taken from the inside of Torre Guinigi overlooking the Italian city of Lucca. In the distance is the bell tower of the Duomo di Lucca. One of the things Lucca is famous for is it's intact city walls that enclose the old part of this beautiful Italian city. Because of it's age and layout driving is limited and walking is the main way to get around - one of my favorite cities.
Here's a little flashback for this Fridays image of the week. This dining set was commissioned and started in 1997 and finally completed in 2004 with the completion of the two end chairs. The set ( not all shown in this picture ) consists of the dining table, 6 side chairs, 2 end chairs, a small serving table and the china/silverware cabinet. It is made of solid Cuban Mahogany ( Swietenia mahagoni ) and Quilted Mahogany. The Cuban Mahogany is very rare but this Quilted Mahogany, commonly known as "The Tree" is so rare that all known stock is believed to be from one single tree felled in 1965 in the Chiquibul jungle of Belize. The dwindling stock that remains worldwide of this wood is in high demand and can fetch over $1000 dollars a board foot!
BTW, This commission was my first real furniture making project and I started it without even having a shop or proper tools... what was I thinking? - talk about being thrown into the fire.
Todays image is of a small landscape painting I did titled - Sunrise over Sandbar, Bolsa Chica. This small oil on canvas is 6"x8" and was started as a limited palette study of Sap Green ( a warm green ) and Viridian Green ( a cool green ) with Ivory Black and Titanium White. This combination allowed me to work with both value and temperature on this painting while remaining monotone.
It's pretty self explanatory - I make stuff and want to show you.
Image's of the Week on ScaneLife will feature Art, Photography, Furniture, Videos and more so check back every Monday, Wednesday and Friday to see the new image.
This first one is from last summers trip to France. It was taken in Ménerbes in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region ( South of France ). Dora Maar, one of Picasso's lovers and later wife to artist Nicolas de Staël lived in Ménerbes.