Traveler🌎 Artist🎨 and Creative🎬, capturing the spirit of a place on canvas. Follow my adventures. Check out my artwork email@example.com
More alligator pics, lol. I'm fascinated by these guys. Contrary to what many believe, they aren't just mindless eating machines that kill anything that comes near them. They are a vital part of the ecosystem in the Everglades, which would collapse without them. The alligator holes that they build sustain life during the dry season, becoming a source of habitat, food, and water for fish, birds, and every other creature in the Everglades. It was a thrill to be able to get so close to them in the wild.
Got up close and personal with the local residents while hiking through the Everglades!
Good morning from Key Largo! Headed up this morning for a hike through the Everglades
Visited the Sea Turtle Hospital in Marathon today. Most of these guys are here due to problems or injuries that are a direct result of human carelessness or ignorance; intestinal impactions caused by eating plastics and other garbage that they mistake for jellyfish, injuries due to propellers and boat collisions, and tumors caused by a virus directly linked to pollutants, with a dose of fun damage or loss from entanglement with fishing lines. Most will be released when they heal, but some can never be returned to the wild and will live out the remainder of their lives at the hospital, or at a zoo or aquarium. Please, everybody, while you're enjoying this planets beautiful beaches and oceans, be mindful of the effects that your activities have on the creatures that are sharing these places with you.
Staying at the Amoray Dive Resort in Key Largo, getting ready to head out for a little snorkeling on the reefs.
So I spent this evening watching the sunset and reflecting. I got a call this morning, telling me that one of my mentors from my days in the horse business had died. He was in his seventies, still training horses, and was killed when the horse he was riding flipped over on top of him. He died doing what he loved. We kept in touch sporadically over the last four years, mostly on Messenger. I knew where he hung out, and I kept meaning to go see him, but I always seemed to be so busy... I didn't know until today that he had been keeping up with my art career, and how proud he was of me. It was a mistake, not going to see him when I could have, and I can't go back and change that, but what's important in life is that you learn from your mistakes and make an effort not to repeat them. So I spent the afternoon picking up the phone and reconnecting with the people who are important to me who just fell by the wayside, some because life got in the way, and some because pride did the same. It felt good. Life is too short to wait. Are there people in your life that you're waiting on the "perfect" time to reconnect with? There is no "perfect" time. There is no better time than now.
One of my students working on her first large painting. She's got the underpainting done, next we'll add the color. So proud of her!
Oil study of a Mariachi band taking a break between sets, done after my trip to the Yucatan.
Frying bananas...Mmm! Thai market, Tampa
Orchids for sale at the Thai market.
When you're short on funds and vacation time, it's great to be able to travel in your own backyard! This is Wat Mongkolratanaram, otherwise known as the Thai market, in Tampa. It's an active Thai Buddhist temple, complete with its own population of resident monks, on the banks of the Palm river. On Sundays, volunteers from the temple cook and Steve authentic Thai cuisine at super cheap prices, with all money going back to support the temple. They also sell orchids and various fruit trees and herbs. Visitors are welcome to attend the services at one. It's a great way to spend a morning, experience another culture, and support the local community without having to buy a plane ticket, lol.
Snorkeling in Rainbow Springs. Swimming with manatees in nearby Kings Bay was an amazing experience. We were approached my a female and her juvenile male calf.Female calves remain with their mother for 2-3 years before going off on their own, but apparently male calves will hang around and mooch off of mom for as long as she allows it...Go figure! They let us scratch their backs and bellies and really seemed to enjoy the interaction. We had an excellent guide from American Pro Dive Shop. That excursion was a bit disappointing though; I had hoped to get some good underwater photos of the manatees, but the water in King's Bay is so murky due to the high amounts of pollutants that visibility was very limited. On the other hand, Rainbow Springs was crystal clear and beautiful. I'm definitely taking a trip back this winter when the manatees will be in the springs!
Getting ready to check one off the bucket list... Swimming with manatees!
My painting "Rest", just accepted into the 2018 Acrylic Painters USA annual juried exhibition. I did this from a photo I took of flamingos at Busch Gardens.
Noel has a breakfast buddy! I made friends with this backyard squirrel when I bought the house, and he finally got brave enough to come near the bird...Cute companions for my morning coffee!
Even though I prefer to do my traveling and painting outside of the US, I can't always jump on an airplane to go find inspiration. Luckily, the area around my hometown offers plenty of subject matter. This is a painting from Sunset Beach in Tarpon Springs, just 10 minutes down the road. A storm was rolling in from the Gulf, and I loved the drama of the dark storm clouds against what was, fifteen minutes before, a beautiful sunny sky. One of the things I love about painting is that it opens my eyes to the beauty of the everyday things around me.
These are a couple of my miniature paintings that were juried into this year's MASF Art Show, now being exhibited at the Dunedin Fine Art Center.
This is my kind of white Christmas! Merry Christmas from Florida
My painting of a view of St Phillips in Charleston, SC. I did this a few years ago...This scene has probably been over done, lol, but it just says, "Charleston"!
Love all the old churches in the Holy City
Taking a carriage ride through Charleston, courtesy of an old friend who is the barn manager at Palmetto Carriage Company. Even though I grew up here, I still take one day to play tourist when I visit!
I finally bought my own house...Closed last Tuesday, but I've been so busy redecorating I forgot to post, lol. This will keep me busy for awhile...
"Pelican Brief" won second place and a spot in The Artist's Magazine
Check out the December issue of The Artist's Magazine, PG 62. My first time in print!
Hurricane shutters going up....
Miniatures I'm doing for the September and October shows... Can't work on them too long or I go cross-eyed, lol!