"When dawn spreads its paintbrush on the plain, spilling purple... ," Sons of the Pioneers theme for TV show "Wagon Train." Dawn on the mythic Santa Fe Trail, New Mexico, looking toward Raton from Cimarron. -- Clarkphoto. A curmudgeon artist's musings melding metaphors and journalism, for readers in more than 150 countries.

Sunday, September 18, 2022

Altitude attitudes

"Aspen Road," 12 x 12 acrylic, palette knives, brushes, gallery-wrapped canvas

getting altitude sickness--the good kind. 

Friends in New Mexico and Colorado are already posting photos of the signature colors of autumn in the high country, beckoning me again.

Though it will be a while before we can drink in the multi-sensory spells of that country, I can still dream, and try again to paint  the glittering,  quaking images of a high altitude beacon.

Almost everyone who knows about the magic of aspen has painted, or tried capturing their spirit, how they demand your attention and wonder, in original ways.

Aspen always catch my attention, even in summer--as you drive up into the mountains, gaining altitude, seeing the white trunks of the aspen always prompts an exclamation, "Aspen!" 

In the autumn, their changing leaves, twinkling in the clear alpine air, take your breath away with yellows, oranges, reds and more, even from a distance. To wander a country lane between an aspen grove is a walk of wonder. And somehow, photos never seem to quite do them justice.

It is difficult trying to come up with an original composition, not an imitation of some other work I've seen, and this is not the first time I've attempted to tell the story of their effect on me and others. But it is the first in acrylics, perhaps the second of my road paintings.

(Soon to be available at In Your Eye Studio & Gallery in Paseo Arts District.)

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

Road to Autumn

"Autumn Road," 10 x 10 acrylic on gallery-wrapped canvas

porch thoughts as autumn nears next week--shorter days, cooler temperatures...leaves will soon be changing. The texture of the season looms in color, eagerly awaited after this summer of heat.

Dreams of a favorite season, and today's painting on back porch , in plein air, "Autumn Road," playing with a palette knife to grab the textures, and a few brush strokes. Soon available at In Your Eye Studio and Gallery in Paseo Arts District.

Tuesday, September 6, 2022

"Sunset" thoughts

"Sunset," 16 x 20, acrylic on gallery-wrapped canvas, see credit below

hundred years ago, the British Empire, with the most powerful military in the world, and  influence around the world, was nearing its sunset.

Today, it seems the American empire seems to be following history. The most powerful military, yes. Influence around the world? Yes.

But internally, the rampant signs of decay, not just political, but in technology and education and constant war and more are everywhere in America.

Consider China, the new super power of the the rest of the century, in technology and influence.. And it will also pass, as the pressures of population and acceleration of time take toll of "civilizations." 

'Tis not the first, nor the last, for sunsets on the British or Roman, or any other empire, including the United States, tearing itself apart.

Today's painting harks back to when another empire of freedom was in its sunset. That of wide open spaces, of peoples who lived in harmony with their world.. Not a utopia, nor an empire, but of existence, wiped out by  so-called civilization of aliens.

Gloomy thoughts? Perhaps, but also,  inspiration for freedom, for survival. 


Inspired by Harold Von Schmidt woodcut in "Death comes force Archbishop by Willa Cather, 1926.