Saturday, September 29, 2012

Summer 2012

      I had a great summer this year! I am very excited about moving into the Fall.  The change of weather brings a fresh crispness to the air.  Before moving on though, I wanted to post some memories of this summer to let you know a little more about me and what I do when I am not painting.  I hope you enjoy!

My wife Cara and me hanging out at our friend's house.  A Sunday treat!

I work at Starbucks in Charlotte.  I have been with the company since February of 2008.  My favorite drink is my custom "Grande, 3 pump Chai, 1 pump Pumpkin, Soy, No Water, extra foam, Stirred to perfection, add chocolate sprinkles, dolce sprinkles, and pumpkin spice sprinkles, ... Chai Latte"  I'm a mad scientist at work. :)

A street lamp in Miami I found very interesting.

My family likes to play 'Settlers of Catan'! This is my Cool Brother Christian.  Happy 21st birthday soon!
Cara and I went on vacation to Miami Florida with my parents and brother Christian.  My "big splash" attempts proved to repel other resort swimmers... Hehehe... :)
The big white building is where we live.  This is a picture we took when coming home one evening this summer.

Early in the summer our friend Abby was about to have her first baby! Brittany and Cara helped with the photo shoot. 
This is Benjamin Dirk Richardson.  Isaac and Abby's beautiful first born.  Congratulations!

In only a few weeks, Benjamin is growing fast! 
Cara and I went to the Cabarrus County Fair with friends a couple weeks ago. 
I showed the trash talking fair vendor who was boss! I threw a baseball through his beer bottles and won my Lady a prized red panther! :) Fun!

My friend Josh and I at the beach just before summer came! We couldn't wait!
Brittany and Cara when we went out to dinner at the beach.

The four of us (Josh, his wife Brittany, Cara and I) went mini golfing while on vacation in Orange Beach, Alabama.


Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Heaven's Many Lights!

This painting breaks into new territory for me.  I have been researching famous quotes and poems, all the while feeling dissatisfied with my findings.  No famous poem or writing really fit how I was feeling or what I wanted to say with this work.

So I thought...

Then I wrote a poem for myself.  From my memories, I laid a line of thought for the viewer to travel down when experiencing this work of art.

The Poem reads:

     With closed eyes
     the soft sound of breeze through the leaves
     crackle of the fire
     warmth of the glow
     leaning back
     with opening eyes
     Heaven's many lights!
     Reminds me of a time
     when our fingers touched
     and fusion lit a star.

Each line of the poem is written in gold, on gold lines connected to the compass in the top right corner.

This map is also stretched over a cork board panel so that the viewer can pin the places he or she wants to travel to or has already returned from.  There is a very small gold heart over Charlotte, NC. My home city.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

In Search of Treasure!

"In Search of Treasure"... A reoccurring day dream of mine.

I learned a few lessons from the last map that my wife Cara and I painted together.

We had some friends over Sunday evening and it amazed me at how subjective art really is.  I asked what seemed to be strait forward questions, and inevitably everyone would confidently answer... differently.

So what did I learn then?
Consistency, unity, cohesiveness, selective variety, sensitivity.

All these terms are a book unto themselves to an artist.  My goal in this series is to create a series of interactive maps that integrate line-work, color, and... gold, into every work.  Why gold?  Because every time I think of a map I think that the maker of the map was trying to show the viewer a treasure if only the viewer were clever enough to discover its secrets.

I have for years collected gold and silver coins and old bills.  Why? It began because my Uncle Mark started my younger brother a quarter collection in 2000.  Year 2000 was when the quarters first began having the states represented on their reverse.  The face or Obverse side stayed the same, but variety was introduced in the minting and over the years, the quarters have continued to expand beyond the 50 states and onward to the territories and such.  Interesting as it was in the beginning for me, I moved on to bigger value coins and developed my collection from there.

In 2007 I had an amazing idea! (At least to me).

When Cara and I have children around the age of 8 or so, I will send them to the attic or basement to find something trivial like a flashlight or something we haven't touched in years.  Little will they know I have hidden a map somewhere nearby but out of plane sight.  This map they find will be an apparently old map.  This map however will lead to a very real, and by then, quite valuable, Treasure.  My idea is that they will come to me and Cara to show us what they've found, and I will act like its fake, so that they will be all the more interested to search it out to find out the truth.

Children love the idea of being the first to discover something even if it was man made...   Some of us never grew up... :)

This interest of mine, in treasure maps, and making memories, has motivated this series in a very different way than other projects in the past.

Here is an image of my second map in the process of being painted.  This time the map will have a blue background.  My thought is that when laying gold leaf on top of the deep blue paint, the contrast will be far greater than the previous map on neutral brown tones.

Thank you Cara for taking and editing the picture!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

A joint 'Ad'Venture

     My beautiful wife Cara and I love spending time together.   We often enjoy finding ways to improve our home by discussing our interests, and putting our ideas into action. One of our interests in life is travel.

     Just the word 'Travel' brings joyful imaginations to mind that inspire us both to act. We know we may not be able to fly away like a bird just yet, but we can express our interests exactly where we are now... at home.

     So Cara and I were bouncing ideas back and forth with one another. I was wanting to paint a world map by hand, and she had the genius to make it interactive! I said How?

     "By stretching the canvas painting of the world map over a cork board backing, we can not only have a painting of the world map, but we can put in map pins where we have been and draw out a plan of where we want to go." (Cara)  That way anytime we get back from a new place, we can add another pin and dream all over again. Each pin represents memories of shared experiences that can never be taken away. So without any further a-du, here is what we made. :)