During this last roadtrip, I got in the habit of hiking right before sunset in order to maximize my chances of encountering wildlife, especially snakes. This particular hike at City of Rocks State Park took me along a deep ravine where I encountered numerous critters, but these Great Horned Owls were the highlight. I began hearing some distant “Hoots” which grew louder as I proceeded along my path. I came around a wide corner and there was this pair of owls no doubt beginning their evening hunt. I’m guessing the lighter colored owl is the male, and the larger, darker one is the female, according to descriptions I’ve read. They let me get surprisingly close before they grew tired of my presence and flew further down the ravine, but what really struck me was how silent their movement was. They flew right overhead, maybe four feet above me, and I couldn’t hear the flapping of wings. Their feathers are extremely soft, which not only serves as effective insulation, but also allows them to fly quietly when pursuing their prey. Horned owls are known to be mates for life, so I bet this pair has been hunting the snakes and rodents around City of Rocks State Park for some time.
Great Horned Owl Pair, City of Rocks State Park, NM
Hwy 12 from Bryce Canyon Junction to Torrey, Utah
My initial idea was to only post art-related images here, but the result of that plan has been a focus on my travel photo site NOLONELYROADS.COM and the neglect of this blog. I’m going to change that and start posting photos & stories from my travels here as well as anything art-related. I guess you could call all of this “art-related” since I often use my photos as reference for my paintings. I’m most inspired by the American landscape, so it only makes sense to include all those images in this blog.
Here is a collection of shots from Highway 12 around Christmas 2013. This road, which in my opinion is the most beautiful in the entire country, spans 124 miles from Bryce Canyon Junction (Hwy 89) to Torrey. Driving along this incredible highway is like taking a highlight reel tour through the diverse landscape of southern Utah. Alpine forests, red rock canyons, towering mesas, ancient seabed buttes, rolling slickrock saddles, and desolate valleys all encompass this awesome route, but my absolute favorite section is between Boulder & Escalante. This stretch of road follows along the spine of the New Home Bench, with insane views from either side. It literally feels like you’re driving in the sky. Knowing that there are actual places in this world more fantastic than anything I could ever imagine is what keeps me painting. I strive to create something as awe-inspiring as the world I see before me.
Hwy 12 along Calf Creek Canyon, UT
The Being Above a Sea of Mist (After Friedrich), acrylic on panel, 40″x30″, 2014
This is my final piece for my solo show at BeepBeep Gallery in Atlanta in October. It’s based off of one of my favorite Caspar David Friedrich pieces, Wanderer Above the Sea of Fog. The photo came out much darker than the actual painting, but that’s what I get for painting in greys and blacks all the time. I will be leaving on an extended hiking excursion out west for the next few months. I’ll be updating my photo blog during my trip. Adios!
I’ve got one more large piece to finish today, and then I’m done with the paintings for my show at the end of October. Until then, I will be updating my photo/travel blog
NO LONELY ROADS.
The Constellation Tree, acrylic on panel, 18″x18″, 2014
The photo lab I take my paintings to has been having trouble getting a proper scan of my darker pieces, this one in particular. I’ve included a detail so you can see a little more of what’s going on within the branches of the tree.
Working on this big homage to Caspar David Friedrich’s The Wanderer above a Sea of Mist. I have two weeks to finish this and one other big tower piece before I disappear into the desert for a few months.
Painting in progress.
Check out my photo site No Lonely Roads.