Mooning around

I never could see the man in the moon, except when the Apollo program was running.  And yes, I’m old enough to remember it – but also young enough to have wished that I’d been ten years older to better appreciate it.

I always saw the rabbit in the moon. So, I decided to paint it, seeing as I had an aging bucket of gesso and some craft paints that needed to be used or lost.  I thought it would be good to get this done while it was still cool enough to paint outside, and I just got finished in time.  The sad part is that whether or not anyone is happy with it, it’s now going to be too hot to paint outside in the light, so Salton City is stuck with this one until October.

mural of moon on garage wall

The Rabbit in the moon.

Newer Work #37

Sometimes I get asked about night time skyscapes – ‘nocturnes’.  Here’s one.  This one is pretty much out of my head, it’s not from a night sky in Joshua Tree – it’s named that way because of the foreground added.

Nocturne with moon and Joshua Tree

#1212 Joshua Moon. Oil on gallery wrap canvas, 12×12″ $100. Currently at Borrego Art Institute, but coming out of the summer show Oct 17th if it’s still unsold.

A couple days at the lake.

Despite the fact that I live close to the largest body of water in California, it’s not terribly enjoyable during the ‘hot’ season, and Doug and I like to go up to Lake Cuyamaca – up in the mountains, 5000 above the Salton Sea, about an hour and half away, it’s a whole nother climate.   We rented our favorite little cabin for three nights and packed up bedding, fishing gear and the bare basics of a kitchen.

On the first evening we went out for a stroll and saw a lot** of wildlife.  I had left all connections to work behind, except I took some writing paper, thinking I would put a few poems together.  This came out of the evening walk across one of the dams that forms the lake.  You will see once you get into it the tune that it’s based around.  The last line though requires a little more explanation.  We had just crossed the dam and saw a squirrel in the path.  We stopped.  The squirrel stopped.  Then, as we continued, instead of scooting up a tree, it walked down the path towards the dam, just like people walk past each other on a city sidewalk.

Evening Stroll

On the first evening strolling beside the lake we saw:

Twelve Canada geese
Eleven redwing blackbirds
Ten wild turkeys
Nine cawing crows
Eight scavenging raccoons
Seven strutting grackles
Six massive vultures
Five mule deer
Four fishing herons
Three flitting bats
Heard two hooting owls
And a squirrel walked right past us on the path.

Of course, having left all connections to work behind, that included the camera and on the last evening I was unable to photograph the view across the still lake just after moonrise, which confirmed that there is an even quieter cabin on the other side.  I did this from memory.

On the easel - Cabin

On the easel – “Cabin” – original oil on canvas 24×36″ $1080.



"Comma Moon".  Watercolor collage on panel, 12x9". $135.

“Comma Moon”. Watercolor collage on panel, 12×9″. $135.

It’s always interesting to get feedback from viewers of my artwork.  Sometimes they will see faces or other items ‘hidden’ in the clouds – that I never intended to put there.  I remember in particular a painting of a winter solstice dawn in Salton City, the time of year that the sun comes up out of the water, it seems.  In the painting the sun was about halfway above the horizon, and the long bright reflection reached towards the viewer, getting narrower as it came closer.  It was one that I particularly liked.  One day a little girl (about three) came in the booth holding her father’s hand and pointed to this painting, which was on the lower half of the wall, just at three-year old eye level.  “Oh Daddy, look at the ice-cream!”  Of course after that I could never un-see the ice-cream.  The painting did sell not too long after, and I hope the new owner never sees the ice-cream, it did detract from the view.

Recently I had one follower comment that she liked my paintings that included moons, and is currently considering a purchase, but I seem to have pretty much sold out of moons.  Indeed it was true – there were only two.  Well, red rag to a bull, now there are three.

Let there be darkness.


“Moon on Water”, 10×8″ acrylic on loose canvas.

A few years ago one set of my neighbors had an attempted burglary during the daytime.  Happily this was only an attempt, but it resulted in them installing The Security Floodlight.  Other neighbors and I liked to refer to it as the Third Celestial Body, it being brighter than all but the fullest of moons.

Now, these neighbors have moved and The Light has gone too.  Stars have been reinstalled and we’re looking forward to being able to see the meteor showers next week.