Fall

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“Surf Style” Oil on board

“Surf Style” in progress – oil on board
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“Alpine series #1” -Oil on reversed glass 11/17/2015
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Oil on glass
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Zentangle and travels with pen and ink.

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Needles Utah 11/1/15
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“The Stranger” oil on reversed glass 10/15/15
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New Window 10/10/2015

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Sharpie sketch

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Close up- in progress

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“Fading from Red” Oil on reversed glass

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ALIVE DAY

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Alive Day

     On September 7, 2005 in Helmand Province Afghanistan, a Suicide bomber detonated a vehicle borne IED a few feet away from me. 8 local nationals died instantly to include a young boy on a bike. I was knocked out and lucky to be alive. No other Americans were injured.  I feel that there is a piece of my soul left behind, lost, and confused back in Afghanistan.

     Today is the tenth anniversary. Wounded vets refer to it as their Alive Day.  I feel extremely lucky and grateful for the life I have.  A sense of renewal has taken root. As you know, I like to share every morsel of goodness with friends and family.  Ramping up to this day is always tough, yet this year has been nothing short of a miracle. 

     My intent was to extinguish the negative past and celebrate the new normal. As fate would have it my alive day would be at Snowbird,  where all of my fondest childhood/young adult memories are based.  The perfect location to bring in a new chapter of my life.  The reunion with the Bounous family was pre destined by a higher power. (I needed that extra boost from those I admire most) Deciding where to go on the mountain to pay homage was so eloquently suggested by 90 year old Junior Bounous:

“Find a nice patch of flowers”

     I followed his advice and started up the mountain in the pre dawn hours.  As I hiked I was Flooded with emotions and planned a ceremonious burial. I brought with me the sleeve from my uniform that contained the blood and charred remains of the blast.

     The crescent moon was my guide and slowly the light softened into the pastel shades of morning. The stillness interrupted by chirping and rustling chipmunks.   The tops of the peaks were painted by the first rays of sun.  I found a nice patch of flowers with a commanding view of the valley below, and the rocky crags above. Then I dug using a wedge of wood I found on the race hill. I placed my past into the shallow crater.

      I said a prayer with gratitude, I asked for forgiveness for the things I saw and did while deployed. I prayed for those heroes whom did not return. I prayed for those who are preparing to deploy. Lastly I asked for guidance in how to live with honor and purpose.

     I covered my little plot with flowers and granite, and felt instantly relieved. A weight has been lifted.

     Thank you all for making my life meaningful. I am on my way back to the Midwest where I feel safe, amongst the lakes and trees. Furthermore the most important life additive; is the people we surround ourselves with.  You make my world a better place.

Peace! 

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Glacier 2, oil on glass 10/16/15
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Glacier 1, oil on reversed glass
10/16/15

    

    

     

Summer

Time to be productive. Summer means Mural season to compliment the studio sessions. My latest forray into the local fabric is volunteering for the Delavan Walldogs. I’ll be hosting an artist, and working on one of 18 murals in Delavan with 130 artists from around the country. My first experiment is an adorandak chair with an image of a clown motif to be auctioned off.

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Artists unite

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Great learning opportunities!
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It was an amazing week with fabulous artists!

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Final touches sealed with a kiss.
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New window- oil on reversed glass. “Post Red”
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“Chicago Sail”- oil on reversed glass

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Finished detail.

Spring

I’m starting the new season with a three drawer dresser.  I painted a scow on all sides for my mom who was an avid inland lake racer. It has been a productive day and night with out pause. I look forward to new themes and more windows… I still have a big wall in Williams Bay to complete, however it’s still snowing as I write this so I’ll stick to the studio for now.
     Cheers!

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Audrey Hepburn sketch-
Sharpie and watercolor on canvass.
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“Adaptive Adventures Summer”
-oil on reversed glass
4/17/15
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Winter 2014/15

The Frosty Wisco temps proved a reasonable excuse for studio sessions. I focused on several oil on reversed glass windows. The unexpected twists and turns in slathering the medium onto the smooth glass takes on a life of its own.
    

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Military Warriors Support Foundation interview:

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=qMyo4KTyJMs
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The Williams Bay Tourist House

I am in the mix of going really big for a Geneva Lake mural at Mike and Laurie VanderBunt ‘ s vacation rental. The wall is adjacent the back yard on a neighbors garage.  The project is taking shape as the challenging details are yet to come. I like the fact that all the colored blobs look fine from the street.
     Stay tuned for more updates. A big thanks goes out to The VanderBunt ‘ s for their faith in my vision.

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My dog Charlie is on hand for some up close advise.

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Summer projects 2014

I left New Mexico’s Land of Enchantment for the Lake Life in Wisconsin.  Summer 2014 will forever be the most memorable for all the blessings I received. A new mortgage free home thanks to the Military Warriors Support Foundation (MWSF) tops the list for the life altering gifts. What I thought was too good to be true was real and my gratitude towards the MWSF is never ending. 
     The new home includes a basement gallery and art studio. I feel like it was custom made for me and my work. The summer projects are a culmination of works dedicated to making the house a livable space with personalized decorum.
     A free dresser found on a curb side was the first project. As ugly as it was I begrudgingly loaded it up and took it away. My mom said to paint it, so I took her advise.  She thought a solid color would work but I had other plans.  With 5 drawers, the top, and two sides turned into 8 separate paintings. I enjoyed each step making the lake scenes come to life.
     The next big canvass was started in my living room, inspired by a painting at Benelux restaurant in Milwaukee. I tweaked the scene to include the rolling country roads that dominate the corn field and silo filled  landscape of my new home. 
     The official key presentation for the Delavan house was in front of 80,000 Badger fans in Madison Wisconsin.  There were interviews on the field and at the home.  The art studio was transformed into a TV Production studio. I filled the walls with work from the past 25 years.  To include a few new oils.
     I look forward to many years of painting the days and nights away in my own little Wisconsin piece of heaven.

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Enjoy!!!