Escape to Sun River

I’ve been in Sun River for a week, and Lord, is it ever a welcome break. It’s cooling down at home, but has still been hot, so the temps here are such a relief. Especially when I’m running.


Being in Oregon does restorative things to my soul. I am a different person here than when I’m home in my workaday life.


Moonshine is with me. I drove out with my pop-up and we camped along the way. She is a great companion.


I spent the first day or two this week just getting the place opened up and aired out. Got a few groceries, knocked down some wasp’s nests, dealt with some small repair issues outside. After that I could let myself relax.


I’m going to be here for a month, so I have to keep up with work to some degree, so to that end I brought my laptop and essential work stuff, and I have to a lot a few hours per day to that. I touch base with the staff in the office and keep on top of the projects. I don’t have any big project that


I’m personally producing, which is great, because I can be here mostly in a supervisory/monitoring capacity.


Typically I don’t set an alarm. I get up when I wake up. Let Moonshine out, make coffee, fix the coffee, and go sit on the porch. On a rocking chair like the kind they sell at CrackerBarrel. The porch overlooks a stand of pines and the river. I’ll sit there for an hour and reflect, maybe draw a little, text Libby and say hi, and generally, just wake up slowly.  Sure beats the days when I had to run the kids around. I remember all the times I had to take the youngest to see her doc.  She had a “condition.” I had a great pediatrician years ago who passed her practice onto a new woman who is equally good. You can look her up if you’d like. Click Here.


But I digress. (back to my morning routine)


Then I’ll fix myself a superfoods shake and drink that while I check in at the office. I’ll spend the next few hours on work stuff.


The afternoon and evening are mine to enjoy. I always go out, with Moonshine. There are so many trails around here, and they go on  basically forever, so I can go on a two-hour run and still not get to the end. I run most afternoons. When I come back, I’ll paint or draw.


I started a human anatomy drawing class back home, and I’m currently working on hands. Damn, hands are hard to draw! Not sure why, but they are, and they’re kicking my butt. During my month here, I want to focus on hands and be disciplined about practicing drawing them.


So, I paint and draw. Always I have a good cigar going. I brought a few from home, but there’s a great little cigar shop in town, so I stock up there.


Oh, and I have my glass of merlot close at hand.


Always I have good music going. Usually my Ingrid Michaelson Pandora station.


And then . . . I’m in heaven. Music, wine, a cigar, and a rewarding hobby to pursue.


Moonshine keeps me company. I do wish Libby was here, but she has created her own life and she can’t drop everything to be with me. I brought


Carol here for a week once. It was good. We had fun, the sex was good, blah blah blah. But it wasn’t the same as with Libby. I’ve realized, since


Carol and since the other women I experimented with dating, that Libby has always been my soulmate. I was such a dick to let her go. But then again, it’s just where I was at the time, and I’m not going to beat myself up about that. I just hope that someday Libby will come back to me.


Being here makes me miss her all over again.

The Art Show: Gotta Bring it!

flower girl

Artist Much?


There’s an art show coming up in Daytona. I submitted my application and found out yesterday I was accepted. I’m pleased, because it’s a competitive show to get into, and looks good for me when I’m applying to be in other shows.


I do hope it will be worth it. These shows are so much work! Getting all the paintings finished and framed is the biggest job, of course, but the show itself is work. Getting the booth set up in a way that will show off my work and also draw people in, physically being at the booth for three days, and then breaking the whole thing down.


I have to figure out different materials to use for the sides of the booth. Last time (Libby helped me) I used bamboo screens. They looked cool but turned out to be a pain in the ass because they weren’t really strong enough to hang the framed pictures on. They did hold up, but I kept wondering if I was going to turn around and see all my paintings in a pile on the ground. Libby was constantly checking the hooks to make sure they were secure.


I don’t want to deal with that again, but I do still want a backdrop that has an organic, natural feel. That’s very important to me since that’s what my paintings are about—landscapes that are mostly free of structures and the influence of man.


I’ve wondered about getting a bunch of thick bamboo (like two inches thick) poles and sinking them into the ground. Or stacking pallets in a tasteful way and draping them with burlap or hemp fabric or something.
Anyway, I’m thinking about that. Libby said she’d help me with this show, and she’s doing some research for me into booth options. Once we get something figured out, we have to get it approved. What a hassle. But I get it.


The show sponsors don’t want booths made of materials that don’t align with the overall image they’re trying to achieve.
The show is four months away. It’s a good amount of time. I have enough paintings now that could fill my booth as display pieces. What I’d like to add is more, simpler paintings that have a lower price-tag.


At the last show, those little 3×9 paintings of a single palm on a stained wood block sold like hot cakes. I want to crank out a bunch of those.


And then I’d like to do several bigger pieces with higher price tags. They’ll be copies of my personal paintings that people always comment on. That one I did of the Indian River with the little ramshackle building in the distance.


Or of the Canaveral seashore with a couple of sandpipers on the beach. Or the one of the mangrove swamps with the anhinga on a stump, wings spread out, drying.


So I have a lot to do in the next four months, with designing the booth, acquiring the materials for it, and producing paintings.
I’m going to start tonight!