June 23, 2014
OK, so now it's officially summer, and the brutal Winter and Spring we've emerged from seem like a distant, blurry bad dream. Lots of plants and trees took many hard hits, and rebirth has been slow and steady. In that spirit, it's been pretty busy around here lately, and apparently quarterly updates are all I'm able to manage so far this year. So here it goes:
So before it's too late, you gotta get down to Flag Ponds Park Nature Park & Beach before "Nature's ARTcade" closes on June 29th. I know, again I'm telling you after the reception, but it is still worth seeing before it comes down. It was curated by Margaret Dowell, currently an adjunct professor at CSM, whom I first met at an awesome portrait show at Delaplaine Arts Center in Frederick, Maryland, in which I participated, and she curated some 20 years ago. Time's fun when you're having flies!
The show she put together at Flag Ponds features 50 works of various media and styles and represents many of the talented artists that live and work right here in Calvert County, as well as artists from other areas near and far. I am showing my painting "Gray Day" and have prints available for sale. In the catalog McDowell writes: "Nature ARTcade visitors will witness nature filtered through the eyes of artists working within a variety of aesthetics." Go see for yourself, and while your there, take a stroll on down to one of the best public beaches on the Chesapeake's western shore, you won't regret it.
Since December of last year I have been working on a project with my good friends at Color-Ad, Inc. It is, without a doubt, the highest profile gig in which I've ever had the privilege of participating. I finished the first piece in time for the grand reopening of the Washington Monument, which has been closed since it got damaged in a rare earthquake a couple years ago.
The new visitor center is at the top of the monument and the first piece I had to fabricate is a model representing a diagonal cross-section of the pyramidion, the pyramid shape at the very top of the monument. The actual pyramidion is truly an incredible feat of engineering and it was quite a challenge for me to represent it in a tactile model. The model was built with interlocking aluminum plate parts that were coated and textured with fiberglass and epoxy clay and painted with vinyl-acrylics.
Click on the thumbnails below to see the larger images:
The second part of the project involved me representing six of the 189 commemmorative stones that line the staircase on your way to the top of the monument. It is my understanding that the stairway will remain closed to the public (you have to take the elevator to the top) and so the designer wanted to represent some of the commemorative stones in a tactile form for visitors to see and touch. Along with the "stones" I also fabricated a 24" tall half-replica of the overall monument itself.
Click on the thumbnails below to see the larger images:
The making of the "stones" required me to adapt some new (to me) technology in order to produce them in the short time I had. I gave myself a crash course on a CAD program, and with the help of the awesome staff at ARTcorp, I was able to employ 3D printed components in combination with my epoxy clay sculpting. The results exceeded my expectations and it all wouldn't have been possible without the kind folks there at ARTcorp (Applied Rapid Technologies) in Fredericksburg, Virginia, walking with me through the process. If you're looking for a 3D printing service, I can't recommend them highly enough. Many Thanks to Ted and Bruce and all their crew! Thank You for all your help!
And here's the Birchmere calendars for June & July:
I think that's about all I've got to share with you right now, and in the future I'll try to better keep you posted. So until next time: It's getting hot out there, so try to keep your cool, you're probably gonna need it! Peace!
March 5, 2014
So here we are, it's almost Spring, and yet it seems so far away. We just dug out from our latest snow storm and it was one of the coldest nights of the Winter last night. It seems Punxatawny Phil was probably right, so just a couple of weeks to go until we can kiss this long, cold, snowy Winter a fond farewell... and it won't come soon enough!
One day I hope to post info here AHEAD of the events, so you can attend or not, instead of reporting about it afterward, but that day hasn't yet arrived, so my apologies yet again for posting about stuff that has already happened.
So far in 2014, I've paricipated in two group exhibits. One was a "swap" show between my gallery, Artworks at 7th, in North Beach, MD, and CalvART gallery located in Prince Frederick, MD. Basically a group of us from Artworks exhibited at CalvART for the month of February, and a group of CalvART artists are exhibiting at Artworks this month (March). I showed my painting "Blue Sky" since I haven't painted any new stuff yet this year. The CalvART reception at Artworks was this past Saturday, but the show is up until April, so come on by Artworks at 7th and check out the CalvART SWAPshow!
The other show I participated in was through the MFA gallery in Annapolis, MD. It was curated by Catriona Fraser of Fraser Gallery and was exhibited at Gallery B in Bethesda, MD. I entered my painting "Rockhold Creek Sunset" and I was selected as one of the 38 artists out of the 312 national entries. Although I didn't win any prizes, I was given an Horable Mention. It was quite an impressive show of some excellent artwork, so I am humbled and honored just to have been chosen to participate, let alone the mention. Again, my apologies for not posting this before the show came down. I didn't make it to the reception, which was a snowy Valentine's Day, so I'm apologizing here all around. However, many a heartfelt Thanks to Mrs. Fraser and all the good folks there at the Maryland Federation of Art for putting together a wonderful show!
Ok... so I'm knee deep in a pretty cool project that's probably gonna take me until the end of June to finish. I can't tell you anymore at this point because A) I don't want to jinx myself and B) it's still a work in progress; but as soon as I finish the various parts I'll try to post them for your review. Let's just say it's a monumental piece.
I have a few other things in the works as well, but again, I'll post them as soon as I can for you.
Oh yeah, and here's the Birchmere calendars for March & April. Click on the thumbnails to download the PDFs:
I hope you've been keeping your cool while trying to keep warm, as it's been kinda brutal around here lately. Let's try to keep our eyes on the light at the end of the tunnel, and before we know it, it'll be sunny and warm, and the flowers will be blooming and all will be fine and beautiful here in the land of pleasant living. So try to savor every moment, because soon, again before you know it, it'll be hot and humid and we'll be wishing for Fall all over again. It's always something, isn't it...
December 30, 2013
Well now, it's been a very busy Holiday Season for me and I hope you & yours had nice one, regardless of the flavor you prefer. I've been meaning to write this update for a while. Now, I'm finally getting around to it, so here goes:
I just grabbed my favorite local paper the "Bay Weekly" and found the "Best of the Bay" list for 2013. In case you don't know what I'm referring to, the Bay Weekly is a local newspaper (celebrated 20 years in 2013!) that is published in Annapolis and features articles and advertising from and about the Chesapeake Bay and surrounding communities. It also has Chuck Shepherd's News of the Weird, Rob Brezsny's Free Will Astrology, Ben Tausig's Ink Well Xwords, etc., etc., but I digress.
The "Best of the Bay" is an annual list created by the readers who write in, and vote for, various local people and establishments in over 200 categories that they (the readers) consider to be the best at whatever it is that they do. My gallery, Artworks at 7th, was voted the "Best Gallery of 2013." It's the third time that we've won in this category, and a big Thank You to all who voted for us, and Congratulations to my fellow Artworks at 7th members!
But that's not all. As if I wasn't honored enough to be part of the gallery that was deemed the "Best," there was another category entitled "best local artist," and to my surprise, MY name was on the list. I don't know who voted me onto the list, or how many others concurred, but I want to say a big "THANK YOU" to whoever you are! I was quite flattered and humbled to read it, and I feel totally honored to share the tag with the other fine artists on the list. So very kind of you; Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!!
You can click HERE to see the list!
In November, I was invited to participate in CalvArt's Invitational, and I really should've posted it sooner (like BEFORE the exhibit came down, my apologies) but here it is. Mimi Little and Karen Chambers were kind enough to invite me to show with quite an impressive group of Southern Maryland artists. The exhibit "... highlight(ed) thirty of the most talented artists in the tri-county region." The show of paintings, sculpture, jewelry, ceramics, glass, furniture, and fine basketry hung for just two weeks and I was honored to be included. It was a fine reception, and it was really nice to hang out with some folks I hadn't seen in quite a while, and also to meet some new folks to hang out with in the future! I showed the painting "Rockhold Creek Sunset #2" which I produced earlier this year. Click on the thumbnail below to see the enlargement:
I forgot to do so last time, but here's the calendar of events at "The Birchmere" for the next couple of months. Click on the thumbnails to download the PDFs:
Every year on my birthday I try to paint a self-portrait "just for the record." Some years I manage to do it, some I don't, but this year I turned 50 (yes, 50), so I decided it would be a good thing to do. Thing is, I need to use reading glasses to bring into focus anything closer than the length of my arm. I don't wear them otherwise, so to be accurate I thought I should paint my self-portrait without them. Well, as I was painting in a blur (the panel, of course, was closer to me than the length of my arm), it kept me quite "loose" and "unpolished." I think it came out ok. In any event, here it is, my 8" x 10" 50th birthday self-portrait. Click on the thumbnail to see the enlargement:
And last, but nowhere near least, Phyllis & Ray Noble have opened a new art center in Huntingtown called "Cox Art Center," which features a gallery-style show space and art instruction in a variety of media, taught by many wonderful local artists. I am not one of the instructors, but I am showing some of my work there at an ongoing basis. Stop by and sign up for a class, or browse the walls and purchase some local art if you can. Tell 'em 'Shoe sent ya!"
Oh yeah, here's one more item. I've reworked a small cast object of mine from around 20 years ago and remade the mold, so now, there is "Venus on a half-shell" once again available for purchase, at both Cox and Artworks or through this website if you are interested. It's a hand-painted, reinforced plaster cast that measures about 11"H x 9"W x 1"D. Each one is hand-made from scratch so they are all a little different. Click on the thumbnail below to see the enlargement:
So that about does it as far as news. As other irons in the fires become "share-able," I'll post them for your perusal.
2013 has been one wild & wacky year. Here's wishing us all a Happy & Prosperous 2014, in spite of ourselves!
Keep calm & carry-on. Peace on YOU!
October 4, 2013
Here's my report on the Avian Solomon's Plein Air Festival that was September 18th - September 21st and a posting of the five plein air paintings I produced that week.
I got started on Wednesday morning and after getting my canvasses stamped at Carmen's Gallery I decided to begin my painting at Flag Ponds Nature Park. Ranger Connie Sutton was kind enough to open the park to us painters and I saw a few as I found my way to the beach. I decided to try out the pier and so I set up facing south with a view of the cliffs.
I finished that 5" x 7" in about three hours and as I turned to leave, the scene of the beach looking north caught my eye, so I decided to paint that as well. I walked away with two 5" x 7" studies, something I hadn't done in two years or more, and I was feeling a bit rusty to say the least. I then had to get the wet oils back to my van, and of course along the hike back I dropped one face down in the sand. It happened to be the second painting (of the beach) so a little sand just added to the authenticity.
Here are the thumbs of those paintings, click to see the enlargements:
Thursday morning I decided to try the Calvert Marina off of Dowel Road. I attempted to capture the shapes of the reflections on the water in a oddly cropped semi-abstract piece. After 3 hours I had enough and so I called it done and I drove to the island and set up near the Back Creek Inn looking south. I couldn't resist the urge to paint in the cormorants sitting atop the pilings.
Here are the thumbs from that day, click to see the enlargements:
Friday was the last day to paint, but I got a late start, so I figured I had time for just one more piece. I parked near Carmen's gallery and began a walk-about to find my spot. I ended up at Waterman's Wharf on a hill under a tree overlooking Back Creek (facing north) with the bridge far off in the background. After about three hours I called it done and headed to the gallery to turn in my week's work. Here's the thumb of my last attempt, click to see the enlargement:
After turning in the paintings I headed back home and showed up the next evening for the Gala at Carmen's gallery. Despite the threat (and ultimately the promise) of stormy weather the event was a success. The place was packed with the participating artists and patrons and sponsors. There was a cash bar and quite a spread of hors d'oeuvres provided by Kingfishers grill. I even sold the two Flag Ponds pieces (Thanks Nancy!).
Next time I hope to make it to the Quick Draw which was a plein air painting challenge that was open to the public. Registration was at 8:30am on the boardwalk and at 9am the horn was blown and the entrants had two hours to produce a painting from somewhere within view of the boardwalk. After turning in the work at the main pavilion, it was judged and then there were prizes awarded and honorables mentioned and alot of fine paintings produced. Maybe next time...
September 11, 2013
Even as we acknowledge the heroes and the horrors memorialized by this infamous date, our country is contemplating yet another incursion into the affairs of a yet another country in the Middle East: a place with a terribly complex and long bloodied history.
I pray for "divine guidance" for our "leaders," and that hopefully we all learn from the past so as not to be doomed to repeat it. Maybe enough has been said (or not), but I'm still prayin'...
On a MUCH lighter note... Summer is over, and now we are looking forward to Autumn, with its cooler weather, shorter days and longer nights. Autumn also means back to school, back to work, back to football, and back to a good season to be working in the studio.
I've recently completed a couple of new paintings. One is a small portrait in oil on linen over panel of a local legend and friend of mine, John Gerachis. He has been drawing, painting, and showing landscapes and cityscapes from all around Washington, DC. (and other cities), as well as scenes from around Chesapeake Beach and elsewhere along the water for well over 50 years! He's shared his studio space with me when I've had jobs too big for my space and he's also been a well of knowledge and information (and ouzo!) that I've had the honor and privilege of tapping into on an occasional basis. Thanks John!
The other painting is a small oil on canvas over panel I'm calling "Sailboats, Sunset."It was painted in a similar vein as some others I produced recently. Click on the thumbnails below to see the larger images.
Next week (September 18th thru September 21st) I will be particiopating in another Solomon's Plein Air Festival. This year will be a bit different from years past. First off, this year it's called "The Avian Solomons Plein Air Festival." Click here to visit the website to find out more. Secondly, Carmen's Gallery will be hosting the show instead of Annmarie Garden mainly due to the fact that it's the same weekend as the 20th Anniversary Artsfest. (Click on the highlighted text to find out more about these events.) That means that on and around Solomons Island that weekend, there will be more artwork being created and displayed per square foot than anywhere else on the planet! Well, maybe that's a stretch, but its going to be one busy, art-filled weekend. Come on down and support these events, and maybe I'll see you there!
I forgot to include these in the last post, but here's the Birchmere calendars for September & October. Click on the thumbs to download the .pdfs:
That about does it for now. I'll try to get back here before the next quarter is up.
Until then: Do what you can for others, then you can do for yourself. You never who's watching!
June 21, 2013
Happy Summer Solstice to You!
It's been incredibly beautiful around here the past few days. The weather seems more like San Diego than Chesapeake Beach, meaning low humidity and mild temps in the mid 70's to low 80's... simply gorgeous! Get out and enjoy it while you can!
Just a quick note to let you know I've had some prints made from two of my previous paintings, and this is my official release date. I'm using a new printer - Larry Wertz at Falcon Digital Studio in Edgewater, MD. He's done a great job and I'm looking forward to future collaborations.
I'm trying something different with these prints in that instead of mounting them to foamcore and then framing them, I am stretching them over stretcher bars, gallery wrapped with a black edge. Which is where I will be signing & numbering them. The advantage to me is that they are ready to hang as is (without a frame) and/or can be framed later. This saves me the upfront framing costs and I am passing that savings on to you. Here are the thumbs:
That's all I wanted to share for now, so I hope you can get outside and get into some of this nice weather... maybe the Farmer's Market at North Beach tonight (and every Friday throughout the summer from 6-9pm)?
Who knows, maybe I'll see you there... Peace!
June 3, 2013
Okay, so meteorological Summer's here and I'm finally getting around to updating this news page. It's been a very cool spring in Chesapeake country, but the triple H's (hot, hazy, & humid) hit last week with temps in the 90's, so it's officially summer even though Memorial Day weekend was cool with temps in the 60's and 70's.
... And just like with Sandy last year, our thoughts and prayers (and contributions to the Red Cross) are with the people of Moore, OK and everyone everywhere else that is dealing with this "new normal" of violent weather extremes. The human race is in for some trying times ahead, so it's more important than ever for tolerance and empathy if our species is to survive.
Oh yeah, and here's some news - My prints are now available at two new locations:
1) The Bayside History Museum in North Beach, MD and
2) The Gift Shop at Herrington Harbour Marina (South) in Rosehaven, MD.
The Bayside History Museum "houses an extensive collection of memorabilia from by-gone days of life in and around the communities of Fairhaven, Rosehaven, Holland Point, Friendship, North Beach, Chesapeake Beach, Owings, Holiday Beach, Camp Roosevelt, Willows, Breezy point, Plum Point and the Chesapeake bay." Stop by and tell Dianne,"Shoe sent ya!"
Also: I've finished up a couple of paintings since my last post. I am working on a series of artworks (not just paintings) based on the life of a particular bird of prey that is indigenous to every continent on the globe except Antarctica, known as the osprey.
Ospreys show up here along the Chesapeake right around St Patrick's Day to build their nests and breed. Also known as "fishhawks" (although not a true hawk), their diet is comprised almost 100% of fish that they have to catch. They remain around the bay until September or so and then migrate back to parts South sometimes as far as South America.
They usually mate for life and couples come back to the same nesting sites year after year. They build their nests of sticks and grasses atop pylons, bridges or any stucture high up near the water. Their young will also come back to the same areas where they were born to find a mate and the process continues, building a population that officially announces the coming of Spring to the Chesapeake Bay and it's tributaries. Here's the thumbs to click to see the enlargements:
Also: Every month, for over twenty years, it's been my privilege to put together the official calendar of events for the Birchmere (America's Legendary Music Hall), located in Alexandria, VA. I sometimes add small portraits or other flourishes to the calendars, but every month it's always amazing to me the caliber of talent that can be seen there.
I may start posting them regularly here, and of course you can find them (and an archive of calendars from all the years past) at their website: http://www.birchmere.com/ along with links to various artists websites, and links to purchase tickets for shows, as well as a place to sign up to receive their monthly newsletter eblast - which will keep you on top of all the Birchmere happenings - you'll be glad you did! Here's the latest (click to see and download the PDFs):
... and while we're on the subject, I went by the Birchmere in March (unfortunately I couldn't get by there sooner, before they had the Tribute in February) to add some lettering to the dobro I painted on the wall, In Memory of the late, great, Mike Auldridge, who the world lost on December 29, 2012. He was a resophonic guitar (dobro) master / guru who played with The Seldom Scene for many, many years and was a major part of many other musical collaborations such as the New Shades of Grass, Chesapeake, The Good Deale Blugrass Band, Carolina Star, and he toured with Lyle Lovett and Emmylou Harris as well. He was also just one helluva nice guy and will be sorely missed by many. Rest In Peace, Mike, Your Music Lives On!
While I was there I took some new pics of the some of the murals I painted awhile back an replaced the earlier pics on the Birchmere page. Click on the thumbnail below to see them.
I've got a couple more things I'd like to share with you, but I need to wait for more information. So... until next time:
Get out in that sunshine!
February 11, 2013
Well, as usual, I'm terribly late in updating this "news" page. Thanks for your patience to all who have been checking in on me. I hope that last blahhhg wasn't Too Much Information for any of you folks. Looking back on it now it's seems a bit unnecessary, but at the time I just really felt like I needed to explain a little about myself, maybe even to myself.
All that said, it's a new year, and a lot has been happening around here. Personally, all in all, I'm feeling geat! The surgeries went well and I guess I am "fully recovered" and thankful for not being in constant agony anymore. If you are suffering from anything health-wise, and can get there, I can't recommend Johns Hopkins enough. I truly feel like they saved my life!.
As a consequence, I been busy working and that's awesome! I just haven't been busy typing or I would have given notice here to the CAWL show that has come and gone at my gallery, Artworks at 7th, during the month of January. CAWL stands for Calvert Animal Welfare League and they are a wonderful animal rescue facility here in Calvert County.
The show was comprised of various animal-themed artwork produced by the gallery members and a percentage of the proceeds (along with any donations) was/ will be given to CAWL in support of their efforts. Artworks at 7th hosts this show every year so you will have another chance to attend next year, and I will try to give you a proper heads-up. However, you can donate to CAWL at any time and you can find their website here.
I produced a couple of small (5" x 7") paintings for the show (some of the first painting I'd done since before the surgeries), and it felt good to be at the easel again. Both of the paintings sold before the opening reception even started (Thanks to you both!) so they are no longer available, but I did take some pics. Here are the thumbs, click to see enlargements:
I am also remiss in reporting to you that I participated in the W.A.R.M.T.H. Auction again last November, which
happens on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. W.A.R.M.T.H. (Working
Artists Raising Money For The Homeless) is the brainchild of Mary
R. Owens and her sister Jackie Owens-Lancaster. Along with Jackie's
husband Lanny, these folks turn their beautiful historic home in Leonardtown,
The Camalier House, into a Gallery and Auction House to raise
money for Three Oaks Center, a homeless shelter and outreach center
located in St. Mary's County. You can visit their website by clicking here.
I created a small (5" x 7") oil painting of what I call "fishtraps" for my silent auction piece. This was the first painting I'd done since the surgeries and unfortunately I didn't take any pics... but I think it sold for a fair price (Thanks again, Nancy!) and along with the other prints I sold, it was a pretty good weekend for me and hopefully for Three Oaks as well!
I've also been busy with a few other projects lately. Some are still unfinished so I don't want to mention any specifics just yet, but thanks to the good folks at Color-Ad, Inc., I can report on some digital illustratons that I had the honor of contributing to yet another National Park Visitor Center. The rest of the project is still "in the works" so I won't mention the name or location, but I would like to post the images so you can see some of the latest works I've created using my wacom tablet:
It's been quite the learning experience already and I know I've got a long way to go to make the best use of the tool and be really proficient, but it sure has been a lot of fun so far! In case you don't know, a wacom tablet is a platform designed for painting, drawing and interfacing in creative and precise ways with a computer. They make several products with various capabilities, so for more information about the tablet I'm using, the intuos, I'll direct you to their website by clicking here.
As I've stated, there are a couple more projects in the works and as they are completed I will post them here for you to see. In fact, that's why I haven't updated this page until now, I wanted to have some pics of some work to share and have something to comment about other than my health and the weather. Speaking of the weather... well...
Just try to take a walk outside if you are able and stay warm and dry until spring because soon enough it will be summer all over again and then we'll want to stay cool and get wet untill fall rolls around and then... Funny how that works, huh?
All too quickly I'll say, so until next time I reinterate what I signed off with the last time:
May Good Health and Peace Be With You, Every Step Along Your Way!
If you've been checking in here every now and then to see what I've been up to, you've surely noticed that I haven't updated anything since April. Thank You for your interest, and my apologies for slacking off. The fact is, I wasn't sure how much to share here. If you are viewing this page for the first time ever, Welcome to my website!
It's not "news" that Daybreak Studios is comprised of one guy (me), and lately I've been out-of-commission. I feel like I need to explain it all here, so I'll try to keep it brief:
If you know me, you may or may not know that I've had a condition known as scoliosis (curvature of the spine) my whole llife and for the last two to three years or so I've been struggling with a sciatic nerve issue which was diagnosed as chronic and debilitating.
In case you don't know, your sciatic nerves (actually bundles of nerves) are the longest nerves in your body. They run out from your lower back (on each side) across your glutes and down the outside of your legs all the way to the bottom of your feet.
My curved spine had been compressing like a spring over the years and in the process- crushing my sciatic nerves. The result was a constant and sometimes unbearable pain in me bum, all the way down my left leg. I was told by one doc it was like stacking bricks on an electric cord and the wires were shorting themselves out. Nonetheless, I tried to be productive and "push on" through it all, but it was getting much worse.
I met with more than a few docs and tried alot of different therapies, all to no avail, until a friend of mine found me an "in" to meet with an orthopaedic surgeon at Johns Hopkins. After much consideration, I decided to take the chance on having the surgery.
Dr. Kebaish was the only doc I met with who didn't flinch at my x-rays. He said he could help me, and sure enough, the day after the first surgery, the pain in my leg was gone. Thank You Dr. Kebaish and all the kind folks there at Johns Hopkins! Yes, I said first surgery. I've actually had two major surgeries since June this year and I am still in the process of recovering.
That's what I've been up to. I haven't been able to stand at my easel and paInt yet and I haven't been entering any shows. Fact is, I've had to bail out of a few shows in which I'd been accepted or invited to participate, and I don't want to have to do that again. So I've been trying to focus on my health, and have had to put the painting on hold for now. I hope to be "back in the saddle" in a couple more months.
I have been playing with a new set of tools, though. I finally bought a wacom tablet and have been trying to learn how to use it during this "downtime." I've since drawn a few political cartoons that I'm keeping in a new section I'm calling flotsam. It's the perfect description for the artwork therein; images that I've drawn for my own amusement with symbolism of my own invention, that will probably be considered rubbish by anyone else. That's fine and how it should be. Here are the thumbs:
I know this is a highly charged electoral season with a lot of very important issues on the line for America and the whole world, really. I also know there are no bigger "buzzkills" than politics or religion, so I generally try to avoid these subjects on this website, and keep it purely about my artwork and related business. With the country almost equally split between the two major parties, I realize the odds are 50/50 that I will offend or alienate someone if I share my particular views.
Here's the thing: My particular view is just that, nothing more. I don't claim to be right or have any answers, and I really don't think it's my job to try and change your views. We are all entitled to our own views however ignorant or lofty they may be. That's what makes America so great. You are allowed to think and say whatever you want, whenever you want, so long as you don't hurt anyone else. We are all equal in this sense... and responsible for what we say and do.
It's my humble opinion that political parties are the problem with our leaders today. There are only two viable parties to choose from (if you are so inclined), so it's winner take all and if you are on the other side, you are the enemy that needs to be defeated. It's Team before Country and the Constitution they all swore to defend. Problem is, the other side (which is likely to be half of the population) is comprised of fellow American citizens who have a right to think and feel and act differently than you, and chances are they do.
But we are all in this together, like it or not! So maybe between the two poles lay the solutions to our problems that would do the most good with the least amount of harm; so long as we are willing to consider them... but it's thoughtful consideration that seems to be absent from our politics these days, and hence the wisdom that could be gleaned.
Don't forget to vote on Novenber 6th, and when you do, try to remember the six reasons why we even have a government "Of the People, By the People, For the People." They are enumerated in the Preamble to the only document that literally spells out who we are as Americans, and what is it that we hold dear:
"We the People of the United States, in Order to (1) form a more perfect Union, (2) establish Justice, (3) insure domestic Tranquility, (4) provide for the common defence, (5) promote the general Welfare, and (6) secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."
It's that simple... and that complicated... all at once... and in plain English!
Until next time: May Good Health and Peace Be With You, Every Step Along Your Way!
Spring! It's been crazy beautiful weather so far, a nice beginning
to 2012! Once again it's been a few months since my last post,
so here's my attempt at a recap...
and foremost, Many Thanks to Kyle Osborne! A two-time Emmy Award
winning television anchor and videographer, he is the founder
Or Die , webmaster for The
Birchmere,, Arts & Entertainment critic at The
Examiner.com (the list of bona fides goes on and on!), he
actually took the time to come out to my little town mid-March
to interview me about my work with the Birchmere. I couldn't believe
he'd want to schlep all the way out here, but he did and I am
thankful and humbled by his interest in me. He did a great job
with the interview and I'm told he even kind of made me look good!
Its an honor and a pleasure to be included in his "pantheon"
a link to the 2 minute 46 second video (my 166 seconds of fame):
I finally finished the natural history models of the critters
I wrote of in my last post. Another project sub-contracted through
Color-Ad, Inc., it will be installed by them at Santa Monica
Mountains National Recreation Area, King Gillette Ranch Visitor
Center, just North above Los Angeles. Many Thanks to Donny and
the crew for letting me in on another fun & rewarding collaboration!
didn't want to jinx anything by posting the images before the
entire job was finished. My part is finished now, so here are
I am proud to be participating in an invitational show called
"Watershed" at CalvART
gallery in Prince Frederick. An exhibition of work about the Chesapeake
Bay Watershed, it was curated by Suzanne
Shelden and Denise
Breitburg, and includes a variety of artwork by artists from
all over Southern Maryland. (The piece I'm showing is "Gray
Day" which hasn't been shown since the "Proximity"
show at Annmarie
Garden in 2009.) The opening reception will be on Earth Day
(April 21) from 5pm -8pm, and I hope to see you there! Click HERE
to see the printable flyer.
Artworks at 7th (the coop gallery to which I belong), has
moved to a new location, still there in North Beach. Many Thanks
Carmelo and Selena
and all the other members who helped renovate the space during
the month of February. It looks fantastic! I am remiss in not
updating this sooner as the grand opening was this past weekend.
That's ok, though, because we hope to be in this great new space
for at least a few more years, so you'll have ample time to come
on down and visit! We have some new members with new works including
fused glass and sculpture, and the current show displays it all.
We are hoping to stay open later on Fridays (and maybe Saturdays?)
this summer, and we are right next door to
Bay Wine & Spirits, so come on down for a wine tasting
and peruse our new space!
think that just about does it as far as Daybreak Studios is concerned.
I've got a few more irons in a couple of different fires, and
when I have some more news I'll keep you posted. Hopefully in
less than three months but you never know. Thanks for taking your
time to check in on me , I hope it was worth your while.
to Keep The Faith, because sometimes that's all we got!
Happy New Year to You! I hope you & yours had a wonderful
Holiday, and here's wishing us all a Healthy and Prosperous 2012!
been a bit crazy around here as usual. Since my last post (and
just recently) I've begun a new Park Service project for another
visitor center out West. I'll post some images and info as they
become available, but for right now I'm just hoping to get it
all completed in the short time that has been allotted. It's going
to be lotsa fun creating the "critters" to be incorporated
into the rocky environment of the exhibit. More to come...
Christmas I was commissioned to produce a small triptych of pet
portraits for some friends as presents. The paintings are in oil
on canvas stretched over panels and measure 8" x 8"
each. Although you really can't tell from the pics, they're framed
in gold .
"Butterdrop," and "Watson"
bit of news is that the cooperative gallery to which I belong,
at 7th, was awarded "Best Gallery on the Bay" in
Bay Weekly's 2011 Best of the Bay reader survey! Actually,
we tied for first place with McBride
Gallery in Old Town Annapolis. Considering that McBride has
been around since 1980 and Artworks was founded in 2003, I think
that's pretty cool! So that's twice now that we've tied for first
place as Best Art Gallery on the Bay (we tied with Carmen
for first place in 2009)!
to everyone who voted us in, it's quite an honor!
Artworks at 7th will soon be moving to a new location a few doors
down along the Avenue there in North Beach. As of this writing
we are still working out the details but the new space promises
to be a vast improvement over our existing digs. There is a bit
of work to be done with the required renovation and the move itself,
but it will all be well worth it. I'll keep you posted on that
mean no disrespect when I say "good riddance" to the
year 2011. It's been a whirl wind rollercoaster and we lost ALOT
of good people last year. I know the older I get the more funerals
I attend, but it's always sad and it's never easy. I just wish
all the loved ones that passed: A Peaceful Rest, and to all the
loved ones that are survived:
to Carry On...
Obviously I'm not good at all with keeping up this page of news
so I apologize to anyone who's been checking in only to find that
there's nothing new to check in on.
Thank You So Very Much for taking the time to look in on my humble
been a weird year for me, this 2011. Not just the strange weather
(all the rain, a couple of hurricanes with an EARTHQUAKE squeezed
in between, and just recently: SNOW in October!), but the slow
economy and my unsteady health seem to have all contributed to
my feelings of unease lately. (Gettin' old ain't for wimps!)
last month, we lost our "Best Girl" little "Sally"
aka SR Solar Sailin' Shoes UD RAE JH WC CCA VC,
a Golden Retreiver Extraordinaire! She was a good girl all the
way to the end (all those letters after her name attest to her
achievements) and she will be sorely missed.
Sally in action:
May, however, I participated in my third Solomons Plein Air Festival
and it was a lot of fun as usual. I've included a few of my paintings
in the plein air
section and I will try to keep it current.
are the thumbs:
also produced a couple of commissions earlier this year. One was
a portrait of Tom's family's beloved cat "Shadow" which
I created as a charcoal & pastel drawing to be given as a
gift to his lovely wife on her birthday. I hope it was well received!
was also commissioned to paint a portrait of Christin's boyfriend's
custom Street Glide as a centerpiece to their newly decorated
living space. The piece was created as a black & white acrylic
painting on canvas stretched over a panel. It was my first Harley
portrait and it sure was fun to paint! I understand the owner
was pleased with the results.
are those thumbs:
reworked the site a little bit, added some images and a whole
new page in the graphic section called "Miscellaneous
Pen & Ink Illustration." In this section you'll find
some pen & ink drawings that I've produced over the years,
and I hope to add some fresh meat as I grind it. Some of the images
are political, some are commemorative, and some are just ideas
I had to get on the page in ink.
also found some artwork from the D.O.G. Fest days and a few of
those images are included here as well. They really brought back
some memories for me. If any D.O.G.s are reading this, you know
those were THE BEST parties, and I feel fortunate to have attended
a few! Those days are long gone, but they sure were fun and I
hope I never forget 'em.
I think that's about all that is worth sharing at the moment.
I'll REALLY try to keep up this page a bit more often, and again,
Thanks to ALL of you ( you know who you are!) who check in on
me. I really appreciate your interest!
forget to tell those loved ones that you love 'em while you still
month has come and gone and here in Chesapeake Country it's finally
looking like Spring! The Osprey are back, the trees are in full
bloom and the tulips and iris are poking up their buds to join
the daffodils and forsythia. Despite the rain and quirky temperatures,
it's truly a beautiful time of year!
First and foremost I need to thank my good friend
Sean McDaniel for generously putting his valuable time and
effort into providing for a solo exhibition of my paintings at
208 in Fayetteville, North Carolina for the last two months.
Thank You for all your care and consideration and for putting
up with me and all my twisted faults and neuroses!
all the good folks down there, please accept my sincere apologies
for not being able to attend the opening reception. I was really
looking forward to it, but my health decided otherwise. I understand
the show was well received and the food was a hit as usual!
again for all your kindness and hospitality!
now, here's some good news: Once again I have been fortunate to
have been juried into another group show at
Annmarie Garden in Solomons Island! This space is THE PLACE
to show in Southern Maryland. There is no equal and I am honored
and proud to show there once again and to be in the company of
so many talented folks!
show is titled "About
Face: Stories in Portraits." It will host a collection
of portraits in a wide variety of media, each accompanied by a
narrative provided by the artists describing the story behind
the portrait. I entered a couple of my "Oldies" paintings
that seemed to fit the bill. The jury accepted TWO of my pieces:
coincidentally a portrait of Sean
from 1993 and a self-portrait of sorts called
"The Fly" from the same year. I usually don't enter
older work into shows and was feeling a little bit trepidatious,
but these two have never been seen in this space and the jury
seemed to agree that the pieces really fit the bill. The portrait
of Sean even made the front of the postcard!
Thank you jurors!
opening reception will be an "After
Hours" event to be held on Friday, April 15, 2011 from
6-9pm. There will be a $5.00 cover ($4.00 for members) and will
feature wine, light hors d'oeuvres and live music. You must be
21 or older to attend and the entire gallery (including the giftshop)
will be open for browsing. It promises to be a good time (as always)
and I hope to see you there!
news is that I've decided to accept portrait
commissions again. For a while, not too long ago, I was producing
portraits in a variety of media: graphite, charcoal, pastels,
watercolor and oils. I soon became busy with other projects and
stopped taking requests. Times have changed (and so have I) and
I now welcome commissions. If you would like to get an original
portrait created especially for you, of you or your loved ones,
please contact me
to get a price quote. I am still working out the numbers and will
post them as soon as possible. I can work from your photographs
or we can set up a time for me to come to you for a photoshoot
I am adding to the graphics
section with some older drawings I found in the back bin that
still seem to hold some relevance. Some are commercial, some are
political, and some are just pure nonsense I found to be personally
entertaining. (That's not saying much as anyone who knows me knows
I am easily amused.) In all cases they are part of my repertoire
and have never been shown (here) before . I hope you enjoy them!
of course, I am working on some new ideas for images and as soon
as they are completed I will post them here and you all will be
the first to know! Thanks once again for dropping by and for goodness
sake, turn off that computer and take a walk outside...
Springtime! Find your Peace!
just found this nice feature about the show in Fayetteville:
you Stephanie Crider for the kind words!
It's a new year and once again I'm here with an update on this
big news is I've finally opened a Paypal account and now you folks
out there can purchase some of my prints
through this website. Actually when you click on the shopping
cart buttons you are taken to Paypal's secure website for your
transaction. Paypal is a globally trusted name in e-commerce.
You do not have to have a Paypal account. You may simply checkout
as a guest using an accepted major credit card.
can rest assured that all your information will be held in the
strictest confidence and not shared with any third parties. In
fact, the only information I will have access to would be your
email and shipping addresses so that I can send you tracking information
and your purchases, and I will not share that information with
anyone. I promise!
other news is: Thanks to my long-time friend and colleague, Sean
McDaniel, I currently have a solo exhibition called "Bayscapes
and Other Reflections" at Gallery
208 in Fayetteville, North Carolina. It will be on display
until March 25th, and if you happen to be in Fayetteville anytime
from now until then stop on by and check it out. Hopefully I will
be there for the public opening reception that is scheduled for
Thursday evening, February 24. If we can both be there then, I
hope to see you!
about all I got for now; it's still tough times out here. I'll
keep you posted with anything that I think is news worthy, and
in the mean time: Stay warm and Keep the Faith! The one thing
you can count on is that nothing lasts forever... so let's get
again for stopping by and until next time: May the Peace be with
Here we are working on the third quarter of 2010 and I am just
now getting around to writing this "News"... Better
late than never?
some of what's been going on around here since my last update:
are a couple of new paintings in the
paintings gallery and a couple new projects I completed earlier
this year documented in the
murals section. One was a private commission for a local residence
and the other was a small part in the production of the visitor
center at Bandelier National Monument near Los Alamos, New Mexico.
Once again, many thanks to the good folks at
Color-Ad, Inc. for giving me the opportunity to bid my services
on another fun and informative project!
June I participated in a show with fellow Artworks@7th
member Selena Daughtrey-Andersen. It was called "Ebb and
Flow" and featured some of our recent paintings and other
objects. Thanks to all who came out to see it and thanks to Selena
for sticking with me! I know... I failed to mention it here and
probably shouldn't mention my oversite compounding the evidence
of my social networking ineptitude. Welcome to my world!
hardest part of this whole website / pseudo-blog thing is assuming
that someone is reading any of this and that anyone is even the
slightest bit interested in what I do. I keep this space as a
portfolio not just to showcase some of the projects I have been
involved with, but also to demonstrate some of my skills in hopes
of garnering future affiliations.
so, I'll leave you with some abridged prose ala Alexander Pope's
"An Essay on Man:"
spings eternal in the human breast:
never is, but always to be blest:
soul, uneasy and confined from home,
and expatiates in a life to come.."
for checking out my site and until next time: Peace on you!
I'm not so good at updating the news around here, as it's been
about SIX MONTHS since I last posted. Well then, let's just try
to catch up and wrap up 2009.
Proximity Show at Annmarie Garden was a great fun. The show
included lots of incredible work from 30 local artists. Four of
them are members of
Artworks@7th, my local gallery affiliation! It was an honor
to share such a beautiful space with all those talented folks.
I hope you had a chance to see it. If not, try and get down to
Annmarie Garden this
month. The show has changed but they've got the place all
lit up and I've got a piece hanging in the Cafe Show which features
works from local cooperative galleries and once again Artworks
@7th is representing!
joined another gallery in September. The
Maryland Federation of Art's Circle Gallery in Annapolis.
I have five pieces currently on display there as part of the Holiday
Members Show which hangs until January. If you get by State Circle,
check it out!
I've just released two new images as limited edition giclees.
and "Low Tide"
were painted earlier this year and both were part of the Proximity
Show described earlier. "Gray Day" is the largest print
I've offered to date at 20" x 30" and both are available
also got a few new pieces in the painting section,
click here to see them. I'm thinking about some new directions
to explore, and I hope to share them with you. Due to an elbow
injury in November it's been kind of slow going and a bit of a
struggle lately, but I feel I'm on the mend and am looking forward
to a much more productive 2010.
participated in The W.A.R.M.T.H. Auction again this year, which
happens on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. W.A.R.M.T.H. (Working
Artists Raising Money For The Homeless) is the brainchild of Mary
R. Owens and her sister Jackie Owens-Lancaster. Along with Jackie's
husband Lanny, these folks turn their beautiful historic home,
The Camalier House, into a Gallery and Auction House to raise
money for The
Three Oaks Center, a homeless shelter and outreach center
located in St. Mary's County. This year (for the first time) they
produced and sold a calendar featuring the work of twelve participating
artists. It just so happened that the piece I submitted (Gray
Day, it's really getting around) made it inside and on the cover,
which won me the first annual Brian
Gallagher award. Thanks guys!
sure I've left some things out as 2009 has been quite a challenge.
I'll try and be more diligent in my updates in the coming year.
Thanks for checking in! And so:
wish everyone a very Happy Holiday and a Peaceful and Prosperous
Another couple of months since my last post. The gallery I joined
back in April seems to be picking up a little and I've already
sold a few prints. The show for July is called Route
4 and features acrylic paintings by Suzanne Shelden (www.sheldenstudios.com)
and watercolor paintings by Deborah McClure that feature scenes
from Route 4, the main artery in and out of this peninsula we
call Calvert County. It's a great show with lots of beautiful
images and a percentage of the proceeds will go towards land preservation
efforts here in the county.
this month, the two paintings I finished in April (scroll down
to see) will be in a group show at Annmarie Garden July 25 through
October 4 called "Proximity: Regional Discoveries" which
features work from Southern Maryland artists playing with the
idea of proximity. Annmarie Garden is an outdoor sculpture park
affiliated with the Smithsonian Institute and features sculptures
on loan from the Hirshhorn museum in DC and sports a beautiful
new art center and gallery where the show will be held. I am honored
to show there .
more info go to:
last month I participated in Paint Out Solomons which was also
held at Annmarie Garden and was a whole lotta fun. It was a plein
air event in which artists came from near and far and had from
Thursday to Saturday to paint "en plein air" scenes
from the town of Solomons Island and the surrounding areas. Saturday
night you had to drop off two of your best pieces to be hung and
shown at the Arts Building on Sunday only. Prizes were given for
various "Best ofs...." and all the work was for sale.
I didn't win any prizes but I sold one of my pieces and met a
bunch of really great folks. This was the first time I participated
in such an event and even though it was a lot of work to get it
all together it was a lot of fun, too.
think I'll be back next year.
I'll try to do a better job of keeping a timely blog here in future.
I hope everyone is keeping well and hanging on 'cause this recession
can't last forever...Can it?
now almost a couple of months have passed since my last post.
I've since joined a gallery in North Beach called Artworks@7th.
It's a cooperative gallery meaning it is made up of dues paying
members. I've only been to one meeting and had to hold down the
fort only once so far, but from what I can tell it's in a nice
spot that gets a bit of foot traffic and it is full of fine work
from a variety of local artists. Here's the link for directions,
on by sometime.
the holidays and getting the taxes in order I haven't gotten much
painting done, but I finally finished a piece I've been working
on / staring at for years. It had gotten damaged and I successfuly
repaired it after much trouble. I'm calling it "Gray Day."
It is yet another image of the beach right near my home here in
Chesapeake Beach. One day I'm sure I'll tire of this subject but
it hasn't happened yet.I hope to make a print of it as soon as
other piece is one I started and finished last week that I'm calling
on the thumbnail to see a larger image.
hope all is well with you and yours and that you have found something
of interest to you here.
up the good work and remember those famous words of Benjamin Franklin
spoken at the signing of our Declaration of Independence:
must, indeed, all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang
something like that... For what it's worth...
been about a month and a half since my last post here. A lot has
happened in the world since then. We officially have a new president
and almost a cabinet and the world economy is crashing and burning.
Irrational exuberance seems to be the cause (again).
much for me to do about that except keep myself in check and keep
busy working. Karen and I consider ourselves fortunate in that
we have always lived fairly frugally and are not really affected
too badly by the current situation. Kinda just keepin' on keepin'
I currently have no gigs on the books so I have been trying to
get back to painting. It's been about two years since I put the
brush to the panel. I've produced about six small images so far
and have been working on an image that has been "in progress"
for about 3 years that I hope to finish this year. When I do I'll
here are a few images from the last months' work.
on the thumbnail to see a larger image.
try to stay afloat and keep it all in perspective however you
it's no news that times are tough for most folks right now. A
friend of mine recalled recently that in times like these it is
essential to reinvent yourself again and again just to keep your
head above water. I tend to agree and after a couple of tough
years I am trying to regroup.
will soon be lowering my print prices just a bit in hopes of encouraging
sales. When I had the pieces in the galleries I didn't want to
undercut them, so I kept my posted prices comparable. Also out
of respect for those of you who have bought some of my work in
the past, I didn't want you to feel that you got ripped off.
I still don't want you to feel ripped off and I hope you'll understand
it's just a reflection of the current economic climate. I hope
this year and the new Administrator prove to be a better deal
for everyone. In the meantime, let's just roll up our sleeves
and get busy with what we can to help dig ourselves out of the
real mess we are in as a country (and a world).
I produce more stuff I hope to keep you posted in this space throughout
the coming year(s). Here's wishing all a Happy and Prosperous
finally updated this website (again). I basically started from
scratch with a new logo and layout. I've eliminated all the flash
(except for the tiny little pen & ink portraits). The entire
site is pretty much all HTML and hopefully it doesn't take too
long to load.
is also a section of Prints which are printed by Staples
Fine Art in Richmond, Virginia in limited editions printed
on paper and canvas. They are all produced and mounted to archival
standards. These are for sale and prices are posted. There are
no shopping carts so if you are interested in purchasing anythng
you will have to contact me.
hope I found all the bugs and you enjoy your visit. As always,
thanks for taking the time...