This Land is My Land

This Land is My Land


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Wednesday, March 30, 2011


The weather in Santa Fe New Mexico is starting to warm up and spring is in the air.  However this area is well know for its ability to get snow into and through the month of April.  Being a person who loves the warm weather, I need to wait until the end of May before heading out for some Plein Air work.  I love to go up into the Sangre de Christo mountains up to about 9,000 feet above sea level and paint the aspens.  The mountain has 10's of thousands and they are beautiful in all seasons.

I also venture up to Llano de San Juan off the high road to Taos, which is pretty much a desserted town with perhaps 10 or so families living there.  It is an old farming town with some farming still going on but those who have left have left behind their homes which are falling victim to time and neglect.  A wonderful area for all types of artists with many artistic creating opportunities.

Further up the high road to Taos there are many other artistic opportunities with little hamlets and old churches and pretty much 100's of other sights to catch the artistic eye.

Just  beyond Taos is the little town of Arroyo Secco and from the name you can just imagine the artistic opportunities awaiting the artistic eye.

Well,..............the end of May is not far off.

Monday, March 28, 2011


With the color of blue being so visible in La Paz Mexico, I have been on a journey of creating paintings with these various blues represented.  From the ocean to the sky to the houses to walls and yes pottery! Blue is cetainly IN --- in Mexico!!!

This is 16x20 done with a palette knife very quickly wet into wet on heavy linen canvas paper.  The foreground and background are done with a big brush to give some variation in texture within the whole piece.

This was painted to "FRENCH CAFE" A Putumayo World Music CD - this is a very bouncy colletion of French cafe tunes - words in French of course:


Saturday, March 26, 2011


Blue is a a color that is used in La Paz Mexico at lot - on doors - on houses - on walls and of course the sky is blue without a cloud most every day.  My recent month spent there has my painting mind thinking BLUE!  Some of these blues I used in the painting are found in the ocean, the sky, on boats, on surfaces within the city and in the out skirts of this beautiful area. The following is a pictorial presentation of some of the various steps in the creation of this painting.

16 x 20 on heavy linen canvas paper done wet into wet alla prima with Chroma Interactive Acrylics and a big brush.

"Shades of Blue"

Friday, March 25, 2011

RV Show

Today, Friday 3/25/11 my wife and I drove down to Albuquerque - about 1 hour south of Santa Fe and went to the RV show at the Convention Center.  I have been searching on line and looking at various used RV's and of course this has generated a lot of questions:

What type - what size - what features - what make - gas - diesel etc etc.

Well, the trip today answered a lot of those questions!  Since we plan to be full time RV-ers, the length of the RV was the first issue.  After walking thru - sitting - and laying in various length RV's, we agree that the range we feel comfortable with is 29-36 feet.  This is a big range, and if we could find a 32 footer with a layout we like, I sense this would be the ultimate length for our needs.  We like the Class A's better but would be satisfied with a Class C.  It will be important that the RV we select has one if not two slide outs as this provides a lot of additional space in the width of the main living room area.

So while the house has not sold yet, we are one or two steps closer in knowing what we will be looking for.  There will be many more steps to be taken before we find "OUR RV," but we are proceeding forward in a logical manner which is in keeping with a couple of weenies like us! :>) 

Stay tuned as I will update this as more steps are taken.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

2 Guilty - 2 Innocent - 1 Undecided

After being on vacation for a little over a month, and no painting during that time, I have made it back to my easel AT LAST!!.  This is a warm up painting to get back into the swing (arm swing) of painting with spontaneous motions and color.
12 x 24 Chroma Interactive Acrylics on heavy linen canvas paper wet into wet - alla prima - with large brush and palette knife.
My wife was selected for jury duty and that brought about the title of this piece.

The sketch is done very quickly in pencil with just an approximation of the shapes:

I then quickly with a brush apply a dark color to eliminate the white effect of the line  surface:

The next step is to apply paint with a large brush as a "road map" for how I see the color process developing - this is but an under-painting:

I let this dry overnight and finish the painting with a palette knife blending the color wet into wet.

When this step is completed, I paint in the background, foreground and do any touchups necessary.



Monday, March 21, 2011


I have been using Cheap Joes products for most of my painting supplies since 1994.  I started painting with watercolors and my paint, brushes and paper supplies were all purchased on-line from Cheap Joes.

I used Joe's own brand of paint and paper - American Journey -and have been completely satisfied with the quality and the pricing.  The service is wonderful and I've never had a problem with any of his products.

For the past 5 years I've been painting with acrylics and once again I relied on Cheap Joe's for my paint ( I use Choma Interactive Acrylics) exclusively . I use his brand of brushes and I also use his brand of stretched canvas. I also purchase Fredrix Archival Linen Canvas Panels from Cheap Joe's.  This company represents quality in products, favorable pricing and excellent service.

Recently I started using Dick Blick for a specific product, Strathmore Heavy Linen Canvas Paper.

I find this a wonderful surface to paint on and the Linen texture is just fantastic.  The pricing is very good and they ship them out very quickly.  I'm very pleased with their service.

Sunday, March 20, 2011


As some of you may know, I have a great respect, admiration and affection for the Native American people and their culture.  My grandmother told me many, many years ago that I was part Native American.   As we all are aware, grandmothers DO NOT lie!!  Whether she was lying or not, I've always felt an inexplicable connection to Native American culture. I have always thought of myself as part Native American and living in the southwest gives me a great opportunity to visit many pueblos and experience first hand the culture of these people.  Native Americans are very talented in many facets of creating art - pottery being one of my favorite forms.  I am fortunate to have collected many pots from local Pueblos here in New Mexico.

I've had a pony tail for 5 years or so and recently, at the suggestion of my wife, started wearing it braided.

People ask why I have a tail and I jokingly tell them because it saves me $30+ dollars per month on haircuts!  Truthfully I like it - it's comfortable and I get a sense of being closer to my roots - thank you Grandma!!

Saturday, March 19, 2011


We have just returned from our month long trip to La Paz Mexico and it was without a doubt the very best and most wonderful vacation we have ever had!  La Paz is indeed a slice of heaven - a most wonderful place.

Our condo was on the Costa Baja Marina with a sweeping view of the marina.  We were on the second floor and beneath us was a wonderful restaurant Azul Marino.  We ate there several times during the trip - mostly on Friday evenings as they had a jazz band from 8-11 so joining the fun was the thing to do as sleep was not going to come until the jazz session was over!

We became friends with the owner/chef - Christina who prepared the most wonderful meals with layers and layers of flavor - a gourmet delight!  We also became friends with Raphael who is pictured below and was our wait-person for most of our meals.  A very nice person and one of those rare meetings that result in an instant friendship.

If anyone wants more information on La Paz, just let me know as it is so nice there!

J. Richard Secor and his new friend Raphael:

Monday, March 7, 2011


My friend Dale is a fellow artist - I've never met him in person, just through email - but yet we have become good friends. Our individual style of painting is very, very different with me being an expressionist and his work being very detailed, classical and very close to photo realism.

If I have a straight line in one of my paintings it is a MISTAKE - if Dale DOES NOT have straight lines in his work it is a MISTAKE.  We could not be any different in our style of painting but yet we truly appreciate each others style and in fact we own a couple of each others work in our private collections.

I enjoy his work very much and salute an artist who can produce the level of detail in a painting that my friend Dale creates.  Following is the link to his wesite - check it out as I'm sure you will enjoy his work.

Friday, March 4, 2011


Nothing has changed on the RV front as our house is still for sale and although we have had several showings - no offers as of yet.  The RE market in Santa Fe is all but dead and we expect it to take a while - perhaps a long while for our home to sell. 

Our search for an RV is ongoing and I search certain dealers in various states as well as the Good Sam Club.  I base my search on both Class C and Class A Rv's within a certain age range, a certain price range and size range.  There are plenty of used RV's out there and I keep track of the ones that interest us.

Once we do get to the point that our home is sold, we will seek out some of these RV's that fall into our specifications and search results.
Once we find the RV that we feel is for us, we will pay to have both the RV and its components inspected as well as the actual motorized portion of the unit.  Sort of like a home inspection one has done before buying a home.

If any readers have experience in purchasing a used RV, please drop me an email or comment on this Blog - we will appreciate your suggestions as we are new to the Rv world.