This blog is typically reserved for professional work, but here's a recent personal project.
For the last few years, I've painted watercolors as Christmas gifts for my parents. They recently renovated my childhood home in Maui, and empty walls needed decorating.
↑ Kolea (Pacific Golden Plover) photographed in my front yard. This guy summers in the arctic tundra and returns to Hawaii each winter to defend his feeding ground in front of my parents' dinning room. He's the closest thing my folks have to a pet. I fly home to Hawaii every winter too and meet him there.
↑ One of many large centipedes spotted on our porch. This one's about five inches long.
↑ Many weeds were uprooted in search of the perfect silhouette.
↑ A watercolor lesson from Maui-based painter, Eddie Flotte.
There are a lot of artists on Maui; Lahaina town allegedly has more galleries per capita than any other town in the US. Among the many artists here, Eddie Flotte is the only one who paints a Maui that feels completely authentic to me.
Back in the early nineties, I used to occasionally pass Eddie and his easel on my walk home from elementary school. He'd be hard at work on a new plein air painting of Makawao town, and I'd silently peek over his shoulder. I had never seen an artist work before, and as a young kid that liked to draw, watching Eddie turn dark green globs of watercolor into sunlit trees was pure magic. Twenty-plus years later, I'm still a huge fan. Having no technical training with watercolor myself, I emailed to Eddie in hopes that he might let me pay a brief visit to his studio. Not only did he invite into his home for a look at his latest work, he sat me down for a three-hour impromptu painting lesson. I left fired up with whole new understanding of watercolor technique. It's rare that an encounter with an artist who I admire lives up to expectation, but Eddie's generosity and wisdom were as inspiring as his paintings.
↑ Float-mounting was another technique I picked up while working on this project.
↑ "Pitcher Plant," another Christmas gift in a similar vein. Yup, that's Mothra up top. I did this pen and ink drawing prior to the watercolor above, and it planted the seed for the Kolea piece. It was done for my good friend, Allison Maletz. She's an amazing watercolorist herself, and she did a gorgeous painting of my cat in exchange.