Labor Day Weekend Roadtrip: Day Three

The drive from Portland to Three Forks, MT takes just about 12 hours. We took our time and stopped along the way, but when we finally met up with our friends Saturday night  it was nice to know we wouldn't be spending so much time in the car the next day.

My friends live on a 20 acre plot of land outside of Three Forks and it is so very quiet here. Laying in bed our first night the only sound was silence. Sunday morning their roosters crowing was my alarm clock, but I managed to sleep in a few more hours. After breakfast we hit the road to hike in the Gallatin National Forest.

The view from my friend's place Sunday morning.

Hiking in the Gallatin National Forest in Montana.

The drive back from Gallatin, just before sunset.

Ending the day grilling steaks and watching the sun set from the patio.

Day Three was a good day. Today (Monday) is off to a slow start, but I'm sure we'll find a little adventure before too long.

Art Making and Other Adventures

The last couple of years have been largely about personal and creative exploration. I have an insatiable wanderlust, barely kept in check by a lack of funds. I find travel, whether it's local day trips, national excursions, or international exploration, to be inspirational in so many ways. Lately my travels have been fueling my Cityscape artwork, as I translate the colors, energy and emotion I experience while interacting with different places and cultures into art. 

My cities are largely fantastical, emerging from a series of brush strokes and colors, layering one on top of another. They allude to places I've been or situations I've experienced, but are meant to be open to interpretation. It's fun to hear people discuss their own ideas of what each piece represents to them, and I'm always thrilled when someone makes a personal connection with my work- it may remind them of a place or culture they remember fondly, which is completely different than what may have inspired me. Sometimes they know exactly the inspiration. Other times they want to talk about it; they want me to tell them what it is they're looking at. I guess my paintings are largely my way to interact with cultures and individuals and share a moment of whimsy.

As I write this post, I sit in my friend Cori's living room in San Pancho, Nayarit, Mexico. We've begun an unofficial creative exchange program: she stays with me during the Portland summers, and I escape to her home here to paint and recalibrate in the gloomy Portland winters. It's a pretty great balance. We chat about art, (creative) self-promotion, food, life. It's relaxing and inspirational to see the life she's made here for herself here in San Pancho, and in Sayulita where her gallery is.

I've been painting on her rooftop in the sun, enjoying the sights and sounds of San Pancho. Here's a few snapshots with more to come.

Stunning sunrise from Cori's rooftop.

Stunning sunrise from Cori's rooftop.

My rooftop studio.

My rooftop studio.