Saturday Splendor at the Gallery at Redlands

November 16, 2019

20191116_1044426184385340132583442.jpg

Beginning of my First Painting of the UP “Big Boy” #4014

. . . they remind you of Saturday mornings when you were six and knew the day was young and blue just by looking over the fence through pale smokes of whoever it is is always burning something on Saturday morning (and hammering on nails in the afternoon).

Jack Kerouac, Visions of Cody

Today has been a bright and sunny cold day in Palestine, Texas, lovely enough to step outside in a jacket and walk all over town. Seated in The Gallery at Redlands in the afternoon, I now muse over the entire morning divided between painting, reading, journaling, and stepping outside into the fresh air for the ocassional invigorating walk. The sounds of the city are reminiscent of the white noise I knew from my youth, described by Jack Kerouac above, that I found soothing then, and find soothing this day.

20191116_1014176869598018171910836.jpg

View Outside the Gallery Window of the UP Railyards in the Distance

Two blocks away, the Union Pacific yards are back to their normal work and noise, a week having past since the Big Boy came lumbering into town for an overnight stay. I took pictures then. I begin watercolors now. At the top of this blog is the posted image of the first one, begun yesterday morning. Dave Shultz, the photographer who is also building my new website davidtrippart.com, has provided outstanding photos for me to use as reference to paint this massive locomotive.

20191116_0804215849982864610960060.jpg

Lovely Christmas Tree in my Redlands Hotel Suite

The Redlands Hotel is now tricked out in its lovely holiday attire. In addition to the lobby areas, the hotel staff placed a Christmas tree in every suite of the hotel. I didn’t anticipate what I was to find when I came into my room yesterday. I cried in gratitude; Christmas trees have always overpowered me in that way, and yesterday was no different. Thank you, Redlands! I spent a large portion of this morning beside the tree in my suite, reading and scribbling notes in my journal.

20191116_1014285815607472167145547.jpg

The Gallery at Redlands

20191116_1020104552116264096060711.jpg

20191116_1019102488610438599056819.jpg

Views of The Redlands Hotel in a Walk Across Town

20191116_1048316666681292941990688.jpg

Cover of my Latest Christmas Card

This year, I am adding to my holiday card collection. My 5 x 7″ cards are printed on Hallmark Card stock, blank inside with something I’ve written on the back. With envelope and packed in a plastic wrap, I sell these for $5 each or five for $20. For any of my readers living in the Arlington, Texas area, Boss Cleaners at the Arlington Green Oak Center, 5817 Interstate 20 West, Suite 410, sells these cards in their store.

In three weeks I will be displaying my work for viewing and sale at the Randy Brodnax & Friends Christmas Show: http://www.randybrodnax.com/christmas_show.html

The festival will run Friday through Sunday, Dec. 6-8.

Thanks for reading, and make sure you check out my new blog, davidtrippart.com.

I paint in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

Union Pacific Glory

November 10, 2019

20191110_080234-12486045096721223525.jpg

The Big Boy 4014 Departing Palestine

The 46-degree November morning was worth the chill, standing for ninety minutes watching the Big Boy blow steam and enliven the gathering crowd of spectators. I’ll have more to say about this memorable weekend in the following days, but I wouldn’t have traded this morning for anything. All of us laughed at what happened as the train pulled away:

20191110_0803091377565686269870173.jpg

I’m not sure why I was continuing to take pictures.  And why I was surprised to be engulfed in steam and smoke I am not sure either. But we stood and laughed together for awhile, and I still smile at the remembrance. At any rate, I have well over a hundred photos and several videos to edit in preparation for my next watercolor.

More later, thanks for reading.

I make art in order to iscover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

 

Waiting for the Train

November 9, 2019

Sedona 4

Newest Greeting Card of my Sedona Series

Ten new greeting cards have just been processed, and while waiting for the Union Pacific Big Boy to arrive in Palestine, Texas today, I thought I would start rolling them out on my blog. I began a series of twenty 8 x 10″ watercolors of these red rocks in Sedona, Arizona and formatted six of them yesterday for my 5 x 7″ greeting cards. I print these on Hallmark card stock and insert them with their envelopes in nice Clearbags. The cards are blank inside and have my written thoughts on the back:

Sedona Splendor

“The mountains are calling and I must go.”

John Muir

Words defy my deepest feelings when I stand on the bare ground of this magnificent land and gaze with awe at the towering peaks of the red rocks of Sedona, Arizona. Standing at my easel, I breathe prayers of gratitude as my eyes move all over this silent sculptural portrait gazing back at me with seeming encouragement and approval.

David M. Tripp               (817) 821-8702

http://davidtrippart.com

(blog) https://davidtripp.wordpress.com

Today promises to be an exciting one. The Union Pacific Big Boy 4-8-8-4 is scheduled to arrive in the Palestine train yards at 2 this afternoon and stay till 8 tomorrow morning. All my life, I have envisioned this iron horse shaking the ground with its tonnage and belching steam into its surroundings as it pulls into a town. Soon, I will get to see it with my own eyes. I’ll be set up with my plein air easel, hoping to capture a decent image of it in watercolor and pencil.

Stay tuned.

Union Pacific “Big Boy” 4014 Arrives Tomorrow

November 8, 2019

big boy 4014

Union Pacific Big Boy Restored

Friday night has arrived and I am tucked in for the night in Palestine, Texas. Tomorrow at 2:00 p.m., the restored Union Pacific “Big Boy” #4014 will arrive two blocks from the Gallery where I am privileged to hang my hat. When the big moment arrives, I will have my plein air easel set up to see what kind of work I can accomplish, sketching this big behemoth in watercolor with steam blowing everywhere. The locomotive will stay until 8 a.m. Sunday.

Out of the eight Big Boy locomotives that exist today, only this one is in operation, having been just restored after nearly six decades of retirement. Before service ended, the locomotive had traveled over one million miles. I have seen two of these models, in the transportation museums of Frisco, Texas and St. Louis, Missouri. This 4-8-8-4 engine is over 85 feet long, and has an axle weight of  nearly 68,000 pounds. The driving wheels are 68 inches in diameter.

20170622_1031343846148208967933243.jpg

My Father standing next to a Big Boy in St. Louis

Tomorrow promises to be a special day, and I hope to have good things to report. Also, I invite you to check out my new website www.davidtrippart.com, launched just last week.

Thanks for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind muyself I am not alone.

My New Website has Launched!

November 4, 2019

I am thrilled to announce that my new website is now live and I invite you to check it out. Parts of it are still under construction, but many images have been loaded, and information on my blog is included as well:

https://davidtrippart.com/

20191104_090439-27787637215079272916.jpg

Sedona, Arizona Dream, 8 x 10″ watercolor, matted. $100

Life is a train of moods like a string of beads, and, as we pass through them, they prove to be many-colored lenses which paint the world their own hue, and each shows only what lies in its focus.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Experience”

The energy surging through east Texas has buoyed me like a surfer from one wave to the next.  My friend Dave Shultz has been building a new website for me and most of Friday was spent in The Gallery at Redlands photographing all the art to load on the new site. The artists in the Bullard community invited me back for another watercolor workshop Saturday and the time spent in the home and classroom of dear friends has flooded my soul with new memories and richness. Sunday at the Redlands Hotel featured an afternoon of music as several artists performed multiple sets. The lobby filled to capacity and the sweet sounds of jazz, classical and gospel music filled the atmosphere with a sweetness that defies description.

20191103_1400384670478213734909026.jpg

Kimberley Greene

One of the highest moments of the event for me was when Kimberley Greene came into the Gallery at Redlands, requesting permission to warm up for her set coming up in about half an hour. I sat with my back to her and worked on watercolors at the drafting table while she loosened up. When she played Bach’s Cello Suite No. 1 in G tears welled up in my eyes. That piece has moved me for so many years and I cannot express the depths of my gratitude when someone plays it live in my presence.

Kimberley taught strings to elementary students in the same Arlington school district where I taught for twenty-eight years. She now resides in Crockett, Texas, and will be opening her own school of music soon. I will post information on her school as soon as I receive details.

20191103_144614429133380081192810.jpg

Kimberley Performing her Set

20191103_1413264500036101413772995.jpg

Krissy Clark Singing Jazz

I had the privilege of meeting Krissy Clark the day before she performed. A skilled vocalist, her sultry voice electrified her audience with traditional jazz in a manner reminiscent of Etta James. I would have loved for her scheduled twenty-minute set to extend past an hour, but wonder how long she would be able to sustain that kind of energy. I’m thrilled that she is a local resident, and with Kimberley being less than an hour away, I hope there will be more venues for these lovely musicians to perform. They certainly drew many fans yesterday.

20191104_0904513002751441990199787.jpg

Sedona Watercolor sketch, 8 x 10″ matted.  $75

20191104_0904596589811501412488879.jpg

Sedona Watercolor Sketch #2, 8 x 10″ matted. $75

As the concert played, I propped the gallery door open and worked on small watercolors at the drafting table as I listened and visited with patrons drifting in and out of the gallery. I am posting three of the pieces that were completed and signed during the event.

Next weekend, the Union Pacific “Big Boy”#4014 will arrive in Palestine at 2 p.m. and stay until 8 a.m. the following morning. I will be onsite to paint the steam engine live, and can hardly wait for the occasion to arrive.

Thanks for reading, and please check out my new website at davidtrippart.com.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

Harvest Time

October 27, 2019

20191027_1442142535798447931485466.jpg

Six New Watercolors Completed. $100 each

One of the thrilling benefits of planting, watering and weeding numerous paintings together is that occasion when several come to fruition the same day. Last summer, while vacationing in Sedona, I began about twenty 8 x 10″ watercolors of the view behind the rental where we stayed. This morning I finished six of them, signed and harvested them, installing each in an 11 x 20″ white mat. I’m leaving them in the Gallery at Redlands for the time being.

I am happy to announce that I have a new website under construction which will launch within the next thirty days. Stay tuned for more details . . .

Thanks for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

Saturday Night in the Gallery

October 26, 2019

20191026_1352085227456101615633749.jpg

Palestine Victorian. 8 x 10″  $150 with white mat

It’s not what you put in but what you leave out that counts.

Andrew Wyeth

Palestine, Texas has been chilly all day, but the crowds still came out for the annual Hot Pepper Festival. I chose to stay warm inside the gallery, and brought this 8 x 10″ watercolor to a close. After spending hours detailing the part of the Victorian home that most commanded my attention, I decided to fall back on my favorite Andrew Wyeth compositional dictum that the strength of a composition depends on what you omit, allowing the viewer room for imagination in viewing. Frequently I choose to leave the peripheral elements blank, believing that the viewer will then focus on the portion of the subject that first caught my eye and held my fascination.

The Redlands Hotel has already installed many of my watercolors in the Queen St Grille, across the lobby. Tonight they have selected three more to hang in the side room of the Queen St Bar. I’m proud to see my work hanging throughout the hotel now.

20191026_1638437771155936545360877.jpg

Tonight as I paint in the gallery, I am listening to an adaptation of the original broadcast of H. G. Wells’ “War of the Worlds.  This 1938 CBS radio broadcast is being reenacted before a live audience at the Nickel Manor down the street from the Redlands Hotel. Smooth Rock 93.5 is carrying the broadcast and Alan Wade is in the studio now making the sure the radio signal is steady. Listening to this chilling broadcast is quite an experience and makes me wish now to re-read the novel. Having read it in junior high, I’m confident that there is so much more I could enjoy from the text in my later years. Here is the link to the Palestine broadcast event:  https://www.visitpalestine.com/events/2019/hg-wells-the-war-of-the-worlds-live-radio20191026_19453156590346373319748.jpg

20191026_1945252809557620786259263.jpg

20191026_1945175501187495529108010.jpg

20191026_1945091408280429943949626.jpg

20191026_1945054935659471786494017.jpg

While listening to the broadcast, I’ve been chipping away at a number of compositions begun this past summer while vacationing in Sedona, Arizona. The gallery has experienced quite a number of patrons passing through, and the conversations have been most enjoyable.

Thanks for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

Re-shaping my Subject

October 25, 2019

20191025_1852252607362328496697201.jpg

Friday Night, Painting in the Gallery at Redlands

Three dimensions have been flattened into two, light has been exchanged for paint, the whole scene has been knowlingly composed. Art, Cézanne reminds us, is surroundeed by artifice.

Jonah Lehrer, Proust was a Neuroscientist

Eighteen months ago, I began an 8 x 10″ plein air watercolor sketch of one of Palestine’s historic Victorian homes. I found the house several blocks beyond the railyards that separate the old downtown where the gallery is located and one of the city’s older, well-preserved neighborhoods. After working on it for about half an hour, the sun grew hot and I brought it to the gallery. It was then, studying it closer, that I noted several mistakes made. I stopped working on it, stored it with other discarded works, and soon forgot all about it.

Yesterday, while packing to come to Palestine for a four-day stay, I came across the abandoned painting and tossed it into the Jeep with my other art supplies. Today, I decided to push it further and see if i could shape a decent composition, even if the work is architecturally deficient. So far, I am happy with the way the composition is taking shape and just may have a painting to frame after all. I should know by tomorrow.

The Hot Pepper Festival is all day tomorrow (Saturday). I plan to work in the gallery, as I have all day today, taking occasional breaks to cruise the streets and see what the vendors have to offer. If you are nearby, come see us at The Redlands Hotel. The newly-opened Queen St Grille and Bar will be open and ready to receive you. And I, of course, would love for you to visit our Gallery at Redlands. We are planning for a spectacular day.

Thanks for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

Layered Mornings with Einstein

October 25, 2019

20191023_0905466513145330156114989.jpg

Morning Watch with Einstein Reading

Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.

Albert Einstein, letter to his son, February 5, 1930 (thank you Walter Isaacson!)

Twelve years ago. Summer 2007. Heavy rainstorms pounded Leadville, Colorado. Safe inside the Mountain Laundry, I inserted coins into the washing machines to clean two weeks’ worth of clothing during my trek across Missouri, Kansas and Colorado. The storms chased me off the headwaters of the Arkansas River in the Sawatch Range of the Rocky Mountains. While the laundry churned and I plotted the remainder of my trip across Colorado, New Mexico and Texas, I opened a volume I had just purchased: Walter Isaacson’s Einstein: His Life and Universe. Not only did the book convert the coin laundry into a sanctuary that dark stormy morning; it kept me company the rest of the trip. But by the time I reached home, I put it back on the shelf, having read only the first 108 pages. So I reopened it this morning (Wednesday) and decided to begin from page one and finish the work. Every biography from Isaacson is a true gift; I have read in their entirety his works on Steve Jobs and Leonardo da Vinci. The Benjamin Franklin tome met the same fate as Einstein, but I intend to go back and finish that one too.

The quote above about riding the bicycle resonates with me at this moment in life. The past couple of weeks have been frenetic as I have moved from demonstrations to workshops to art festivals to private art lessons. A few days of rest intervened, and I feel much renewed from that dormant period. But now it is time to kick it up once again; I have the Hot Pepper Festival this weekend in Palestine, followed by a workshop, followed by a plein air event. Finding the balance to continue on this bicycle has not come automatically for me, but I am focused on the effort.

Einstein horizontal

Reproduction of my 1990 pen & ink drawing/collage

5 x 7″ in white 8 x 10″ mat–$20

In my earliest years of teaching high school art, I created a pair of pen & ink drawings of Einstein partial portraits and then completed the works as collages. I gave them away as gifts, but photocopied them before letting them go. In the decades since, I have digitized them and sold them as greeting cards for $5 each or placed them in a good framable size mat to sell for $20. After all these years I am still proud of the pair of works, and now that I am immersed once again in this biography, I intend to begin a new series on Einstein.

Today is Friday. I am settled into The Gallery at Redlands in Palestine for the weekend’s Hot Pepper Festival. My friend Patty, a marketing specialist who has an office in this hotel, told me that her husband Tim had a drafting table he was willing to pass on to me if I had use for it. Enthusiastically, I received it and now have it next to my gallery desk near the window so I can work on art here in the gallery without converting this nice desk into a work table. Thank you Patty and Tim!  I hope to begin some new Einstein-related art in addition to my watercolors in progress throughout this weekend’s festivities in Palestine.

20191024_2103022103815641222811167.jpg

View of the Gallery through the Lobby Window

Einstein long face

Reproduction of my 1990 pen & ink drawing/collage

5 x 7″ in white 8 x 10″ mat–$20

My renewed reading in the Einstein biography has flooded me with new ideas that I am transferring to my world of art from his world of physics and music:

Music continued to beguile Einstein. It was not so much an escape as it was a connection: to the harmony underlying the universe, to the  craetive genius of the great composers, and to other people who felt comfortable bonding with more than just words. He was awed, both in music and in physics, by the beauty of harmonies.

I was always a poor student of science, but reading this biography allows me to transfer some of Einstein’s ideas to my own creative world. Because of this reading, I am renewing my studies in aesthetics, seeking to understand better the laws of composition lying at the foundation of good art.  As I look over these composite drawings of Einstein from 1990, I intend to begin a new series in the Gallery today. Waves of enthusiasm are sweeping over me as I prepare these new materials.

20191025_0905382042448818742629400.jpg

Kevin Harris doing the Morning Show

I always enjoy mornings with Kevin while he does his radio show on Smooth Rock 93.5 FM. He invited me into the studio this morning to pitch this weekend’s activities with the Hot Pepper Festival that runs through Saturday. I will work in the Gallery as before, and take a few trips out into the streets to meet the vendors, always in the hunt for local artists to promote. Festivals always excite me, and I of course am glad to have a permanent headquarters inside this gallery. I won’t have to travel and set up a temporary festival booth until December, I am happy to say.

20191025_0936232215360507094874359.jpg

“Thinking of Jack Kerouac”

30 x 24″ framed watercolor–$400

20191025_0934243156909163641955384.jpg

1902 Cabin from Cotter, Arkansas

24 x 30″ framed watercolor–$300

I have put out two new large framed watercolors in The Gallery at Redlands. In addition to these, I have a number of works in progress that I intend to resume today, covering subjects ranging from historic landmark homes to landscapes. In addition to the composite Einstein pieces and some new railroad themes, I should be pretty busy with the creative process throughout the weekend.

Jean Mollard, owner of The Redlands Hotel, always introduces me to her guests as the “artist in residence.” I have always relished the sound of this introduction, since I first heard it in 2015 when Texas A&M University Corpus Christi named me their artist-in-residence for that week-long Laguna Madre excursion. Prior to that, I was stirred by the sound of the title during my university years when the institution brought in an artist for a short series. But here at The Redlands, it is so much more. The community has embraced me, making me feel a genuine part of these surroundings. I cannot express in words the absolute beauty and class of this hotel and I am humbled to dwell in it.

20191025_1021406297849936126657667.jpg

The New Queen St Grille Bar now Open for Business

The Queen St Grille, across the lobby from The Gallery at Redlands, had to wait for a liquor license before opening the bar. The process was completed last week, and now this beautiful space is open. The bar area is small and intimate, with access to the Queen St Grille to the left and an additional room conducive to meetings to the right.

20191025_102152233046824244221070.jpg

To the left, the bar has direct access to the restaurant

20191025_102146605422034494763788.jpg

To the right, a meeting room is being prepared as well

20191025_102140-pano1627997968638896000.jpg

My Attempt at a Panorama

Activity is beginning to heat up at The Redlands Hotel. It is now Friday nearing noon and the sounds of people are beginning to fill the lobby. Time for me to get back to work. Following Einstein’s dictum, I need to keep this bicycle moving if I hope to sustain any kind of balance.

Thanks for reading.

I make art in order to discover.

I journal when I feel alone.

I blog to remind myself I am not alone.

October 19

October 19, 2019

20191018_125244-14864075319216306801.jpg

20191018_125353-14071940646470921969.jpg

Sundance Square. Fort Worth, Texas

The sunwashed cool days of this weekend have been so satisfying. I feel that I am finally rested from the past couple of weeks of activities requiring constant travel. Sitting outside at a Starbucks in downtown Fort Worth, I read through a journal of mine from the winter of 2015-16. Finding notes I took on N. C. Wyeth, I rediscovered the historical events that all occurred on today’s date–October 19.

On this day . . .

. . . 1902. N. C. Wyeth arrived in Wilmington, Delaware to study under the illustrator Howard Pyle.

. . . 1932. Andrew Wyeth entered the studio of his father to begin his apprenticeship as an artist.

. . . 1937. Andrew Wyeth opened his one-man-show in New York City. It sold out the following day.

. . . 1945. N.C. was killed along with his grandbaby, struck by a freight train when their car stalled at the crossing.

I feel that I’ll never see October 19 the same again.

Thanks for reading.