Wednesday, May 11, 2011


What a week it’s been. It started with a series of horrible tornados and mass destruction, then the common girl married her prince, and the #1 bad guy was caught and killed. Is this real life or a Disney movie? While all this was going on, preparation for our far less dramatic art event at Pacific Coast Dream Machines was in full swing as last minute details piled up like rubber neckers on the freeway.

Saturday, Leslie and I went to check out the venue at Half Moon Bay airport which is right next to the beautiful Pacific Ocean. Classic cars, antique airplanes, monster trucks, motor cycles, all sorts of toys, and many vendors like us would require lots and lots of space! It was an ideal location. The event itself was free of intense rules and regulations, providing us a unique opportunity to get an understanding of how these events flow. The downside is that it gets windy out there. Saturday there were 30 mile an hour ocean winds tearing a path across the tarmac which made us both nervous. I’d spent the last two weeks namby pambying every piece of art, each matte board, every frame, handling all with kid gloves and stressing over any even potential scratch, and I was going to hang it all in the middle of a tornado? I also had plans to bring some gift baskets, one of my custom scrapbooks, and framed sticker art. I scratched the idea because I was afraid they would be ruined.

As luck would have it, the event coordinator was there. He checked us in and showed us where we’d set up. He also strongly suggested we put something in place to reserve our space just in case. Leslie and I raced back over Devil’s Slide to do our final errand at Lowe’s and then over the hill to our house to pick up our stuff, so we could erect our canopy in Half Moon Bay before sundown. So there we were, just us and a bunch of antique airplanes, lugging cinder blocks, hammering steel rods into the hard ground with a cobalt mallet to tie it down, and we did it all in gale force winds. When the tent was fully expanded, we held our breath, but it proved all sorts of rules about aerodynamics, as the wind simply blew through it, as opposed to tearing it to shreds, which is what I was afraid of. Relieved, we went home to keep an eye on the weather.

On Sunday, the three of us were out of bed early, at the airport, and set up well before the 10:00 a.m. start time. The weather was flawless, sunny and breezy, without a gale wind to be felt. There was almost immediate interest in my work, which was a combination of older black and white abstracts, new full color renderings, and one or two odd pieces to spice things up. They were all framed and matted to perfection. One fellow named Robert purchased a framed print of my dragon spirit guide, Gregor, for his girlfriend. That was encouraging. All day long, there was interest in my dragon, along with considerable interest in the piece entitled “Oh Lydia!” for obvious reasons given the audience (if you’re familiar with the piece and understand there were bikers around). I was asked about commissions, gave out many cards, and answered questions about my style and approach. Kirk Prentiss, an old friend from a previous job, turned out in his own toy, a snazzy motorcycle, to lend his support.

We worked our booth as a family but still found time to check out our surroundings. Elizabeth rode an electronic bull and got flung outside the padded ring. Leslie scoped out our neighbors and was happy no other artists were around. Together, they played with remote control race cars on a groovy little speedway one vendor down. We worked our booth like a family and had some fun, as well. When we got home Sunday night, we were all too tired to unload the van, ate something nice and hot for dinner, and crashed!

This experience allowed me to indulge a long desire to beautifully frame as much of my original art as I could and get it out into creation. Symbolically, it was an affirmation of my creativity, my confidence, and my self-esteem. It also took my work to the next logical place after having launched a website devoted exclusively to my creative endeavors one year ago. More than that, however, Leslie supported this effort emotionally, encouraging me when it would be so easy to succumb to pragmatism. I find it difficult to put into words how much her support through this has meant to me.

Now, we have everything we need to enter other events in the Bay Area. There are too many art and wine festivals to count, and all sorts of other interesting events and venues. We will explore all of them. In the meantime, rest is the order of the day.

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