Why do I do it?

"Wave Watchers" 9x12" Oil on canvas panel

"Tethered Blue" 9x12"  Oil on Canvas panel 

All checked into Hotel Boylan for some much needed rest after a crazy and exhausting fun time in Laguna Beach Plein Air
You may ask; why do I do it? 
So many crazy things can happen in a painting event, it could easily become a reality show. For example, while heading to the airport I once again forgot my meds, only to rush back home and realize I had them with me all along, and yet, I miraculously made my flight. Then I got pushed by a cute little sneaky wave while crossing some rocks on the Keyhole that scooped up my panel and lunch, and the surf tried to swallow my flipflop. Finding appropriate bathroom facilities was partly creative and partly embarrassing too. I tell ya, guys have the advantage. I was yelled at by a homeless person for painting on their turf. I must have looked the part with my ragged clothing and gear on my back, and eating between long intervals of creativity only to find that lettuce, beans and rice is the only thing I can eat (fun being next to me). The worst part was when I was turning in my competition pieces I had lost grip and dropped one of pieces face down in the gravel parking lot, only to find a scratched and dented frame. I wept with grief, but my gal pals Suzie and Aimee hugged me and offered support with a few touch-up supplies. Oh the drama of it all.

Painting the canal with pastels on Balboa Island at sundown

But it's the scenery, experiences of painting with great artists, and the laughter while painting a view  while your tripod is nearly sliding down a dusty dirt hill towards a patch of prickly pears, discussing art, and the common threads taking hold on my heart that keep me coming back to the circuit. Somehow I function on three hours of rest each day because I am so excited to get up again to face another opportunity to paint something new and meet new people. Perhaps I do this to create another funny memory and to make another person happy to own my work. Or perhaps it is the big sparkly Gala at the end of a week where being celebrated for what we do keeps me coming back. 

My friends top left to rt: James McGrew, Jennifer Diehl, Zufar Bikbov. me, and Anthony Salvo
after a painting session on the hill.

Though it all, many ask how I do it. Well, I've noticed over the past four painting events that the stress is hard on my health and is also hard to manage while traveling. For this reason I am looking forward to some down time to regroup in my studio to recreate something bigger from my small summer studies....and perhaps rethink my artistic path. 
And so that is why I do it.

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