Live from my Québec studio…just finished this commission

“April sunset at there beaver pond” – 12″ x  24″. pastel on paper

This original will be included in my exhibit on July 6th. Stay tuned!

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Hot off my Québec studio

“Beaver pond, April sunset”, 12″ x 24″, pastel on paper

 

Le bonheur est un chien de traîneau fatigué (Happiness is a tired sled dog)

(Above) “Dealer” chillin’ after a morning run while I finish a commissioned piece for Myrtle Beach State Park.) The original will be for sale at my July 6th exhibit at the Cumming / Preston Tate house .

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Some unpublished drawings and sunset last night

“Dealer” 9:15 last night at my Québec  farm house “home in the sky”.

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Hot off my Québec easel! (I can’t make this stuff up))

SEE SOMETHING. PAINT SOMETHING.

Above: “January cloud study 2″ , 11″x14”, pastel on paper

This painting is based on a January 16 sunrise in north Georgia. This cloud pattern doesn’t happen often but when it does, it takes my breath away. I just finished this pastel here in my Québec studio. It will be included in my July 6 exhibit at the Cumming /Preston house.

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Live from the A.T.; After the Murder

PORTRAITS from the TRAIL 2019 

Live report- interviews with five NOBOs today and their report of the mood on the trail “post tragedy “

Above: “Tanook’s vernal equinox moon”, 11′ x 14″, pastel on paper (this pastel included in July 6th exhibit at Cumming/Preston house)

FREDERICK, MD., June 8, 2019- Today started hot (75 F) when Dealer and I started our day hike south from a trail head north  of Frederick MD. Broken window glass from a recent car theft was a bad omen. The parking lot was almost full of over fifty cars at 8:30 am and the vibe was not happy or friendly.

(Above) “Kiwi” and “Dealer” from NZ (naturally) started from Springer Mt in mid March and today gave her take on the mood of the community “post murder”.

I asked a group of hikers fumbling with their packs in the parking lot if they were thru-hikers. A pasty faced teenaged boy looked at me blankly and sheepishly asked “What’s a thru-hiker?”

Yesterday, I visited the Appalachian Trail Conservancy headquarters in Harpers Ferry to get a feel of how the hikers are recovering from the tragedy on May 11. I was virtually ignored, no eye contact, few smiles. The vibe was definitely not happy or friendly and I attributed this to the hot weather (85F) and the nearness and grief of the recent murder on the trail. Needless to say, merely broaching the subject of the murder and its effect at this sacred halfway point would have been inappropriate . This felt like a time for somber reflection.

(Above) NOBO “Flap Jack”  with Dealer at the trail head was all smiles this morning

But after getting on the trail today and speaking with four new thru-hikers, my spirits and hopes were lifted. All four were very happy and friendly. I popped the question carefully to all four “So how is the mood of the north bound community since the tragedy?” They all were quick to confirm that the joy and fellowship of the AT thru-hiking community is far too pure and loving to be overshadowed by a freak occurrence on the safest community in the world.

Stay tuned for more from the trail tomorrow …

(Above) “One Way” from Jackson MISS, was unfazed by the tragedy and all smiles

 

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Live report from Québec: Murder on the Trail

PORTRAITS from the TRAIL 2019 

100 Northbound Thru-hikers

Before and After the Murder on May 11, 2019

COATICOOK, QUÉBEC, May 29, 2019- Today, I’m feeling a mix of emotions about the tragedy on the Appalachian Trail. I’m sure all thru-hikers must be more than uncomfortable  after the attacks on two through hikers by a psychotic young man from Massachusetts, killing one hiker and wounding another on May 11, in Virginia.

I’m deliberately omitting any photos, the name of the accused murderer and other details of the murder since it was covered thoroughly by Outside Magazine, The New York Times, Boston Globe. and is receiving far more press and conversation than it deserves. In social media, the psycho killer has been called everything from a “victim” to a “scumbag” and the murder has been blamed on everything from incompetent law enforcement to Donald Trump to negligent FBI to climate change.

First reports, reactions, and assumptions about breaking crime stories are almost always wrong. I have to confess, my first thought, when I heard the news, saw the mugshot of the alleged killer and read that he was a 30-year-old man from Massachusetts was ” ill bred, redneck/yankee on drugs”.

The only explanation I came up with is it was a tragic act of God or nature. The fact that it happened on the Appalachian Trail, the safest most crime free community in the world, has made it a valuable lead story on all major news outlets .

Several famous murders come to my mind that generated a similar shocking ” end of innocence” cloud over formerly safe, happy, “youth movements”: Charles Manson murders 1969, Altamont killing at Rolling Stones Concert 1969, 1972 Olympic Games terrorist murders, John Lennon’s murder 1980, and, the final blow for me was, the Boston Marathon bombing in 2014.

This sketch above is the title page of my journal beginning on April 2, 2019. “Printemps de chagrin”  means “Springtime of grief”. Since then, I went through about 4-5 weeks of dark grief work combined with sacred peace and comfort of being “chez moi” in my spiritual home of Québec.


Above, my new four-month-old Malamute “Leader” on our back porch of our farm house in southern Quebec. We’re on the top of a hill and our visa is well over 100 miles to the north and west. We have our own private furnished apartment with kitchen, studio, hi speed internet. We are quickly adapting and socializing with the 5-6 cats, a 14-year-old  Great Pyrenees/Poodle mixed breed owned by my landlady, Viennese born French Canadien.

The point of this report is that, if not for the unblemished joy and peace I experience in all of Quebec, and the bliss and adventure of being a new “Papa” of unquestionably the best malamute I’ve ever owned, I would still be stuck in a dark hole of loss and shock over tragedy on the AT.

I’ve interviewed and sketched about 30 NOBOs since early March. I need to interview 60 more in the next few weeks to meet my quota of 100 for my book idea. My hope is that the joys and transcendental magic that I’ve alway’s experienced on the AT is not dampened by the freakish tragedy last week. Stay tuned!

 

 

 

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Just finished this watercolor…a tribute to a magnificent animal

Forever young, powerful, and a gentle giant, we lost Tanook age 5) to a sudden and mysterious illness on February 7 this year. We now have a new malamute puppy even more impressive  than Tanook (a swimmer and a long legged running champ!)

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“Notre Dame et la Seine” SOLD in seconds to art patron/ former AJC editor Anthony Healy

“Notre Dame et la Seine” SOLD in seconds! (merci Tony!) Car Break Down in Québec, and Back on the A.T.

Un grand merci to former AJC editor and longtime friend Tony Healy who bought my pastel of Notre Dame (from 2014 exhibit) in seconds after I posted it.

Also, today I’m hiking on the A.T. in Virginia in Tornado conditions looking for interesting ‘NOBOs” (north bounders) to sketch, interview an include in my upcoming art book “PORTRAITS from the TRAIL”. Stay tuned!

(Above) “Notre Dame et La Seine”- 16″x 22″, Pastel on paper, framed- SOLD

 

 

(above) Detail from my live journal last month at Amicalola Falls

 

 

 

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Boston Marathon and Notre Dame in Paris

Just finished these live sketches from my Québec studio: Boston Marathon winners sketched live from video freeze and a 2015 pastel of Notre Dame from my exhibit of solo bike trek from Paris to Berlin (it’s framed 19″x 24″ and still available). Stay tuned for more new work for July 6 exhibit.

 

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Live from Baie St. Paul, Quebec

Street scenes yesterday in Baie St. Paul (and a new pastel for North Georgia for my July 6 exhibit)

“February cloud study”- 11″x14″, pastel on paper

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