Pasadena Adjacent

Life Lived on the Edge of Pasadena

Year of the Perdue Wonder – Chicken



The truth will set you free. But not until it’s finished with you.

David Foster Wallace

My #9 pleine air watercolor in 33 years.

Last week I didn’t make the pleine air watercolor session because I was actually making money (see prior post) from my own studio practice, (a term I hate – but it does kind of sum it up nicely).  Heady after a month of actual financial pluses, I was off to the field once again. Oh boy, that M.F.A. is paying big!  Usually I plunk myself down next to Barbara. Gives me a chance to chat to a fellow human. I spend a lot of hours alone. And a sense of security. I’m insecure. Anyhow, feeling sassy, I found the confidence to go it alone.

This is San Pascual Stables. I kept my horse here for a short while. Once upon a time, South Pasadena saw fit to remove the stables from the hands of Anna Wartz and lease it out to a latino lethario named Rinaldo. Remember that Jerry Seinfeld episode where he gets stuck wearing a puffy shirt? That was Rinaldo’s uniform of choice. Rinaldo took pleasure in breaking up marriages. Like I always say (once) “Better the peanut gallery you know then the peanut gallery you don’t.”

[WARNING SHOP TALK] Not visible here, I put in a 3/4 inch border using tape. Several places the paint slipped under. But not in a way that takes away from the piece. This ended up being one of my compression paintings that I had to rein in; pun intended. I went for that desired expressionistic brush stroke, but I started with the specifics (trash bins, tractor, horse). I haven’t found the right balance on how to meld the two; immediacy/specifics. If you watch the video you’ll see the swath of fallen earth behind the palm tree. It should have been kept light. Unfortunately I had lost the form of the silver tree to it’s left. By going back and working the specifics, it became clearer to me what was needed in the way of the hillside behind them. A kind of push and pull. The houses on the ridge are clean and simple. Surprisingly, the black tarp reads well. The shed housing the alfalfa cubes is kind of whacked out but I liked it, and left it ALONE.  Editing and quitting takes a certain maturity. The orange horse? can’t believe I can still draw one.

For Sale: Red Pony 12″ x 16″ on Arches archival paper $250.00 unframed

C U There


December 7th, 12 to 3 PM – 1831 Santa Fe Place Monrovia CA

(Behind AAMCO and Troys Burgers)

Cash Or Checks only


Year Of The Shitsu 2007 Mimetic- Resolution- Cartridge- View- Motherboard- Easy-To-Install Upgrade For Infernatron/ Interlace TP Systems For Home, Office Or Mobile (sic): Watercolor #8



Yes, David Foster Wallace [again]. I’m in love with a dead man.

~~awkward segue~~

My #8 pleine air watercolor in 33 years. I’ve been going on about wanting something other then what I’m successful at. And it didn’t help that a friend of mine, who only recently picked up the brush and is doing these knock out watercolors, sent me yet another stunner. Everything I wish mine to be. True, I’m jealous AND I love a dead man. Time to shake the Q’uyas, spit the Florida Water and tie another ribbon to the death arrow. They say that the core task of the shaman is to dream her world into being. That’s the plan anyhow.

[WARNING SHOP TALK] This session took place at the Arroyo Seco Casting Pond in Pasadena. I chose to only bring out my large Chinese brushes so as not to get caught up in the painstaking details. Loose and immediate was the achieved goal. Clarity was too; FAIL. Just not enough solid areas to rest the eye. The green masses above the sycamore branches were meant to be the distant evergreens on that ridge that runs down to the Colorado Street Bridge. Also the streetlight. Never paint geometric curves first. And somehow I managed to completely leave out the bench that was in the lower left hand corner. But there are areas I’m fond of. The building on the right and the use of blue, the center sycamore, phalo green receptacle and the areas left unpainted. It’s bright and crisp – not overworked. All good.

Next week the plan is to meet at Bailey Canyon Park. I won’t likely make it because of other plans – that I’ll let you in on in the next post.



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