This Land is My Land

This Land is My Land


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Saturday, December 31, 2011

Ceremonial New Years Eve Dance

Hi Blog Buddies,

I thought you might enjoy the photos my DW Melissa put up on her blog of me doing the Ceremonial New Years Eve Dance.  Although I'm part Native American, I seem to think I am Mexican as well!


See Y'all in 2012 and let's us all hope the economy really does start to improve ( none of this Politician BS that is going on now) and we can all get back to normal again.  Our BEST TO Y'ALL ---------- JR and MELISSA

:>)        :>)

Friday, December 30, 2011

Hello Blog Buddies

Well --- pretty soon the clock will strike midnight and we will be in 2012!!!!  I hope it is a better year than 2011 although we were fortunate to sell our home during this horrid economy and we ordered our 31 foot RV so while the economy was/is bad we were luckier than lots of folks trying to sell their home as well as many just trying to hold onto their property.

My DW Melissa is off this morning teaching a Yoga class and then going to lunch with a girlfriend.  Soooooooo what does the JR do ----- CORRECT --- HE PAINTS!!!

However first I digress - HEY I have not digressed for quite a while now and if I want to digress I'll digress - IT'S MY BLOG AND I"LL DO WHAT EVER I WANT!!!!

OK - now back to ME!!!!  :>)

In preparation for our RV departure which occurs on 4/1/12, we have been paring down our belongings as there is just so much one can fit into an RV that consists of approximately 300 sq ft.  Meaningful items and family antiques have been stored in a climate controlled storage facility but I must mention there is not a heck of a lot of room left.  Several items in our TINY UNIT will be donated but there are still 4 - 5 pieces to go into the storage unit.  Will they fit - TWT (time will tell.)
We have several items in our TINY UNIT that we will try to sell and if not then MORE DONATIONS!!!!!!!

I had a very large easel which I modified so I could paint large canvases such as 48 x 30 and 36 x 24.  Wellllllll no way would this easel fit in our TINY UNIT never mind in our even SMALLER RV - so I donated it.  I had it for 5 years and it was like loosing a good friend - but things change and we move on.

I made a smaller easel that I mount onto my DW's camera tripod.  The easel most of you folks know as Mr. ED!!!!!  Wellllll a kink may have appeared in the use of the tripod.  As I say, it belongs to my DW and she informed me that once we are on the road, she wants to get back into photography.  She is a wonderful photographer and for many years sold her photographs and also won several prizes.  She is going to buy a Mega - I can photograph your freckle from 300 feet away ZOOM LENS!!!!  So I can hear her now - I'll be painting, using HER tripod, and she will say "STEP AWAY FROM THE TRIPOD!"  Oh well I'll figure something out.  :>)

OK-------- enough about the tripod -------- more about ME!!!


I have got to increase security - some days a few WEIRD PEOPLE find their way into this sacred Hall of Art d' Presentation!!  :>)

OK - first I do a very rough sketch of 3 pears - why three????  Because the title of this painting is:


For those of you who do not speak my native tongue, and since this is a family blog we shall translate that as "A MEETING OF THREE"

OK - the rough sketch:

Red Anjou pears have many colors in them and to my eyes red is present the least - it is a blending of red-orange-parchment and touches of yellow ochre
So I begin to throw paint at the canvas with my usual method - with no pre - planning just me and my spontaneity.
The photo appears more orange than it is in real life - but - hey I've got a $69
 "Point-Shoot-Pray" camera and it does not like all colors.

Got to darken it up now with some more red tones and yellow ochre.  The light coming from the left , I need to introduce some shadowing on the right sides of the pears.
There - now they are starting to look more like a Red Anjou

A few more tweaks to the pears and the shadow sides and then me thinkith I need to eat one of these pears for my lunch and then take a nap.
Shhhhhhhhhh don't tell Dr. DUMB!!!

Not sure when I will finish this as New Years eve & day approach so we may just veg out.  Any Hooooooooooo my DW Melissa and I wish you all a very Happy-Healthy & Prosperous 2012

Thank you all for following my blog and my painting and for putting up with my humor and just think there is no fee to follow me!  :>)

  I hope to see y'all back in 2012

Take care of yourselves and don't be a stranger.

JR   :>)

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Move it from here to there

Yo Blog Buddies,

Well, today my DW Melissa and I cleaned out a small storage area in the bowels of our TINY UNIT and brought this "stuff" to our climate controlled storage area a few miles from here.  We had to unload some of that storage in order to better pack in other "stuff" as well as take some "stuff" out and make some donations of this "stuff."


So when all was done the TINY UNIT storage area was emptied - thereby saving us $20 per month to rent it.  Our climate controlled storage was re-aligned, 3 things removed and donated.

All in all it was a very productive morning.  The $20 per month savings for the next 3 months will result in $60 staying in our account to be used for 2 nights at a nice RV Park - or 3 nights at a State or Federal campground.

On the way home after stopping and making our donation we stopped at the Santa Fe National Cemetery and took a nice long brisk walk!

Soooooooo now it is NAP time - don't tell my moronic DR. that I'm napping against his wishes - DUH!!!!

The brushes and palette knife will rest for today - but perhaps re-activated tomorrow - Time Will Tell  (TWT)

Enjoy the day or as my friend Dale says:


JR  :>)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011


Good Morning Blog Buddies,

Today is food shopping day and errands as well, so this post will be sort of quick as I have a lot to do.  We are starting to move things our of the TINY UNIT into our 8x10 storage area a few miles from here.  Who we are, What we are and all we have is pretty much stored in the 8x10 crypt!!  We move out of our TINY UNIT come April 1, so we figure we move out of here slow and easy.  The storage facility is almost across the street from Sam's Club so I can drop things off each Wednesday when I go to Sam's.

My DW Melissa is a very good photographer and loves to work in Black & White.  A friend of hers also works mostly in B&W.  We will be visiting her friend during our RV Journey so I painted this yesterday afternoon as a gift for Melissa's friend.

As I say, I'm on the fly today so here we go:

This is 14 x 11 on canvas panel painted with palette knife, big brush and my hair comb.  I use the comb to get the texture of the pine trunks.  I just have to remember to wash it out before I use it to comb my hair - :>) 

Very quickly I sketch in some tree trunks

Next I "throw" lots of thick juicy paint onto the canvas and use my hair comb to create "bark texture" of a pine tree

Close up of a "combed" trunk

OK - the rest will be quick as I'm running behind WHEW - for an old guy i can move pretty quickly  :>)




A close up for my "ATTENTIVE" Blog Buddies -


Well, I'm off and running - OLD but QUICK!!!!

Enjoy the day my friends and take time out to enjoy life!!

  JR   :>)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Plains Of Taos NM

Good Morning Blog Buddies,

Well today is Tuesday - laundry day and TINY UNIT cleaning day.  I went down into the Bowels of the TINY UNIT early this morning 730 - and got the laundry started then came up and started cleaning the TINY UNIT.  It is so TINY that the cleaning process does not take very long.  The timer went off so I went back down into the Bowels of the TINY UNIT and moved the two loads of clothes from the washing machines into the dryers.  Came back upstairs - set the timer for 45 minutes and proceeded to clean the house.  The timer went off and I went once again down into the Bowels of the TINY UNIT and got the dried clothes - well - the bath towels were not quite dry - damp in places so I'll hang them in the bathroom to finish drying.  WHEW -- my chores for the day are over!!!!!

I started this painting yesterday - it is 18 x 24 on heavy Linen paper done wet into wet with a big brush and my fan brush.  As always it was done very quickly with lots of spontaneity and gusto in color and strokes.

The road into Taos provides some very nice areas one can pull off and see some beautiful sights.  The high desert provides a lot of desert scrub brush which leads up to the base of the many mountains that surround Taos.  I used a photo that I took this past autumn for my model.  The high desert takes on many different colors depending on the time of the year and certain scrub bushes do go through a change in color during autumn.

First thing I did was find a blank piece of 18 x 24 heavy Linen paper and then I saturated the sky area with nice clean cold water.  I then started to apply color to the sky with very deliberate strokes of my big brush loaded with globs & blobs of thick juicy paint.  Four different colors of blue were used for the sky as well as an off white and a pure white for the clouds.

During most of the seasons with winter perhaps being an exception, storms build up behind and over the mountains and the upward surge of air found in the mountain areas tend to generate massive storm clouds and sometimes even rain, thunder and lightening.

Next I put in some color for the desert ground

The scrub brush was put in very quickly with a medium size flat brush and my trusty fan brushes.  BUDDA BING - BUDDA BOOM


Some close-ups for my "ATTENTIVE" blog buddies

When we lived on the East coast at the ocean, the weather could cause the ocean to become almost violent and any person in their right mind would build up a very sincere RESPECT for the fury and strength of the ocean. 

Out in the Southwest, the weather can change quickly, the sky over the mountains can change from blue to a fury of dark grey, dark blue, and black.  It s not uncommon for many squalls to develop over the mountains and work their way down in elevation.
Not long ago, during this past autumn my DW Melissa and I went up into the Sangre d' Christo mountains to an elevation of about 9,500 feet above sea level.  I was a nice day - mostly blue sunny sky with a few clouds and a comfortable temperature.  We packed a picnic lunch and brought our lounge chairs and reading materials.  Within 1 hour the blue sky and sun were gone!  The temperature dropped about 20 - 25 degrees, the sky became an ugly light and dark grey and the wind started blowing with gusto!
Well - long story short during the next 1 1/2 hours we sat in our car the rain coming down so hard we could not see out the windshield - shortly the rain change to very large size hail stones - shortly the hail stones changed into SNOW!!!  It snowed in a blizzard fashion for about 1/2 hour.  Then if by magic everything became very still and the sun started to come out!  VERY SCARY!!!!

We left the mountain and on our drive down there had been an accumulation of snow and the storm had moved down in elevation so as we descended the mountain we were once again in the middle of this fast moving storm.

Until next time - take care my friends and Melissa & I wish you all a very healthy - happy and prosperous 2012.

JR  :>)

Monday, December 26, 2011

18 x 24 Dune Series

Yo Blog Buddies,

Well I hope Santa was good to everyone - I made sure I put in a good word for all youse guys!!

This is where we left off the other day with my requested larger 18 x 24 Dune Series painting.

The processes left to be done ( or is that dune ) :>)

I need to create some sort of a beach and dunes in the foreground as well as the grasses that are found on the dunes and blowing in the breeze caused by the wave action in the ocean.

So I start by literally throwing some paint onto the FG area using a big brush.

Humps - Bumps - Dips all suggest the perhaps wind swept sand on the dune area

Following close up gives a better view of the texture to the sand surface

This part of the painting moves along very quickly as I'm using a big brush and lots of paint with spontaneity in brush strokes - nothing planned - just slap it onto the surface.


Once again, the grasses where done using my fan brush as where the indications of "wind swept" sand on the very FG of the beach.

A couple of close-ups for my very attentive buddies - ( I was nicely reprimanded for using the work ANAL) So I have agreed not to use the word ANAL again in my postings - although as with painting, when I'm writing my blog I'm not doing a lot of thinking or pre-planning so it is quite possible that the word ANAL might appear in future blog postings and perhaps the last thing on my mind is to use of not use the word ANAL - however that said and I just said it I will try very hard not to use the word ANAL again and I may even become ANAL about its use.  :>) 

OK  ATTENTIVE BUDDIES (see, I remembered not to use ANAL)
here are a couple of close ups so you can say "How he do dat?"

Friday, December 23, 2011



Good morning again Blog buddies.  Well my DW Melissa has gone off to teach her Yoga class 11-1, so I of course have to go stand in front of my easel MR. ED!  So while I'm standing in front of him I just might as well paint something.
I've had a request to paint a larger "DUNE" scene with some "wave action"  Larger meaning in this case 18 x 24 - quite a bit larger than 5 x7 and 12 x 18.

I digress - some Blog Buddies have asked what I mean by the term "Large Brush."
Sort of like "How large Isssss the brush?"  OK - when I say "painted with a large brush" what I mean is the brushes the follow picture shows.

Bottom to top - bristle width:

2 inch ( bought at Ace Hardware !!! )

1 1/2 inch (My Tony Van H brush)

1/2 inch

In this painting, the 2 inch and the 1 1/2 inch brush were both used for the sky and the ocean.  With both of these brushes one can spread paint like a "Wild Man!!!"

My approach for these two areas is to flood the surface ( heavy Linen paper) with nice clean cold water - when I say FLOOD - I mean dripping/runny wet!!

I then load up thick juicy color ( three different blues used here ) onto a relatively dry brush starting with the 2" one and I apply color "with gusto and spontaneity" and as I get closer to the horizon line I switch to the 1 1/2 inch brush and go into a deeper blue.
For the ocean I do the exact same thing starting with flooding the surface and applying paint - again 3 colors of blue.

White paint was used with the 1/2 brush for the highlights in the sky as well as the development of the "wave action."

Some of the white in the ocean is actually "the linen paper "untouched" with paint.  I do this by quickly "skipping" over these areas with the brush.

So after sitting through that digression (which I tend to do), the painting has progressed to this point.

Close-up of wave action

You can see the "untouched" pieces of the linen paper (the streaks of white) closer to the horizon line - these merely give the impression of waves without putting in the actual detail of a wave - as this (less is more) gives a better indication of depth in the scene.
I want the viewer to say "WOW - look at that wave action" ----- as an artistic side note the wave action up close is justified by the appearance of waves in the distance - these in the eye of the viewer will be the next waves to come crashing in.

So now I rest and think about what the dunes and the grasses will look like based on the wave action.  If there is action in the waves/ocean, the dune grasses can not be static nor can they indicate a violent storm.

At times I indicate that I do not put a lot of "pre-planning" into my paintings - this for the most part is true and although some times I outright lie about that, truth be told I'll be snoozing in 5 minutes and very little visions will be concocted regarding the dunes and the grasses.  No doubt my DW will wake me up when she returns home. 
So off to my recliner with visions of sugar sand and grasses in my head!!  :<)

Til next time my friends.

JR   :>) 


Good Morning Blog Buddies.

Just a short hello - after all I don't want you to think that I ran off to a tropical island and have my feet in the warm ocean and a frosty diet A&W root beer in my hand!

Last nite we did out "grab a bit of Christmas" tour of the lovely resort hotels around the Plaza area.  Got out hour or so of beautiful decorations and decorated trees.  Sat in front of a roaring fire in the Hotel Santa Fe - they have a HUGE kiva fireplace that a person can walk into (it's that big) and enjoyed a nice hot chocolate.  They have a fire going constantly in the fireplace during the winter and burn on average a cord of wood every 5 days!!!

The Plaza was all aglow with all the trees decked out in Christmas lights - very beautiful.

We then went out to one of our favorite Bar & Grills and had a grilled cheese and tomato sandwich with french fries.  When we came to Santa Fe looking for a home, back in Jan 2007 we found this restaurant on a very, very cold evening (as was last night) and we had a grilled cheese with tomato and french fries.  So last nite was sort of a "goodbye" to this bar & grill with the enjoyment of the same meal we had almost 5 years ago.  We are very sentimental people!

Any Hoooooooo over night we had some snow - I would guess about 2-3 inches - nice power snow and today the sky is blue and it is 22 degrees - a nice crisp chill in the air but the sun is shining and all is well.

Melissa is teaching a Yoga class this morning and tonight we are going to the home of a friend for some nice conversation and some great food.  Our friend is a wonderful cook and we look forward each year to this outing!

In the meantime for those of you who do not have any snow (especially our good friends Nancy & Wayne in Florida) we send y'all some of our overnight snow.

I'm dreaming of a white Christmas........................................................

JR  :>)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


Hello Blog Buddies,

Well today was food shopping day as well as a couple of errands.  We are starting to move small stuff out of the TINY UNIT into the SMALL STORAGE SPACE.  I've purchased several small things for the RV and these items started closing in on our space.  When I say our TINY UNIT is TINY,  I mean TINY!!!
We are also starting to box some stuff up to donate and our intent is to be 99% moved out by March 25.  After this, it will be paper plates and sleeping on the floor.

As my DW always says "When it's time to go --- it's time to go!"

We fly out to Elkhart Indiana and pickup our RV on April 4, 2012 and this starts our RV Journey!!

OK enough - after doing the food shopping and errands, I came home and decided to do another contemporary/semi-abstract painting.  I'm having fun with these so I shall continue for a while.  This one is 8 x 8 on canvas panel - painted with gusto, emotion, expression and spontaneity

I got to thinking and IF fruits could enjoy the Holidays, I'm betting they would get dressed up in there BEST SKINS and enjoy the time.  With this in mind, I set out to have fun with this contemporary/semi-abstract piece.

This was done wet into wet with a large brush with not even half an attempt in accuracy of color or form - being semi-abstract color and form do not exist and that my Blog Buddies is the FUN OF IT ALL!  Remember these fruits are dressing up in their BEST SKINS for the Holidays!

HEY - you fella in the back row center seat - of course this is possible and DON'T EVER SAY THAT AGAIN!!!!! 

This will go quickly as I'm using a big brush and the canvas is only 8 x 8, which is small.  Some tweaking up and perking up of the color and the shadows and a tweak here and there in the forms

I've got to finish this up as I'm running the risk of creating mud as the paint is very juicy and applied in globs and blobs - and THAT'S THE FUN OF IT!!


Of course I would not be completely done if I did not offer a close up for my "Inquisitive Blog Buddies" who always seem to say
"How he do dat?"

Well, I'll be taking a few days off to spend some quiet Holiday time with my DW.
There are several nice RESORT HOTELS down on the Plaza so tomorrow early evening we shall go on a tour of these posh places and enjoy all the decorations they display and then we'll grab a lite dinner.
On Friday evening we have been invited to a party at the home of some friends of ours and we have been going there for a few years now and really enjoy the company and the food - TONS OF WONDERFUL FOOD!!!  :>)

So my friends - enjoy your Holiday and stay healthy and happy.

JR  :>)

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


Yo Blog Buddies,

YO - HO - HO!

Did some playing around this afternoon with another quickie done in a semi-abstract-contemporary style.  I work in this style every once in a while when I feel like "painting crazy!"

This is 10 x 8 on canvas panel and was done wet into wet "quicker than quick!!"

I started this one out with a sketch using a round brush and some Paynes Grey paint - the attempt was only to get some shapes onto the canvas that I could work with and once again SPONTANEITY is the operative word here.

This is my second post today so I will hold off on the blah-blah-blah - the pictorial presentation will represent - a rough sketch followed by throwing color around and fine tuning the shape and color to represent a semi-abstract-contemporary Holiday painting - CHEERS


My DW Melissa and I wish all you folks a very Happy - Healthy and Prosperous Holiday Season


Well - Good Morning Blog Buddies,

WHEW!!!!!!-----------  The snow has moved out of the Santa Fe area - we ended up with maybe 2 inches where we live.  HOWEVER parts (north-east) sections of the State had BLIZZARD conditions, with the 2 interstates I-25 closed just north of Santa Fe and I-40 closed down to the Texas border - with upwards to two feet of blowing snow.

WHEW - we dodged the bullet - thank goodness!!!

The sun is out here - the sky is mostly blue and the temperature is 25 degrees at present.
Today being Tuesday, I cleaned the TINY UNIT and did 2 loads of laundry - and that is all folded and most of it put away.

Soooooo that being said --- and I just said it ------- the rest of the day belongs to
ME-ME-ME  :>)

Going to do another QUICKIE today to perhaps get my painting arm in shape for a larger painting - TWT - Time Will Tell.

This painting is 5 x 7 on canvas panel done with gusto - spontaneity and no pre-planning of dis & dat - spontaneity is the operative word here!

I establish a rather accurate horizon line in its straightness and its position on the canvas.  Where is the horizon line NOT suppose to go?  The lady in the 4th row middle seat who is waving her hand like it is on FIRE!!!!  What say Ye woman??
CORRECT-------- the horizon line cannot go in the exact middle of the height of the surface and WHY is that???/  HEY you had a turn - anyone else?  OK the guy in the front row - first seat on my left - what say Ye dude???  CORRECT----- because it will cut the painting surface in HALF and that would -------- RIGHT ------ SUCK!

Sooooo begins "Dunes At The Start Of Dusk"
5 x 7 Canvas Panel

Horizon line in place time for some color applied with quickness - wet into wet

Time to throw in some additional color - indications of slight white clouds and some blue of the sky still peaking through

OK some more tweaks to the sky and the introduction of the ocean as well as the reflections of the setting sun in the sky as well as the land mass

OK the remaining processes to be done are the creation of the FG and the dune grasses - once again as with the other Dune paintings, a big brush was used for the creation of the painting up to this point.  The grasses and shore will be done with a Fan Brush - very quickly wet into wet with sharp crisp movements on the fan brush in upward motions - almost "stabbing" type strokes.
I've also tried to indicate some "Rip Tide" movements in the placement of the waves thereby giving both movement and a suspenseful visual of the on-coming dusk.
Viewers familiar with the movements of the ocean will perhaps notice this and it will present a chance for their eyes to finish the scene with their interpretation of the on-coming dusk.

OK for my anal pesky Blog Buddies ---- some closeups to try and show
"How he do dat?" 

Monday, December 19, 2011


Good Morning Blog Buddies,

Well New Mexico is under a severe storm warning and parts of NM are under a BLIZZARD warning.  Very unusual weather for New Mexico but I guess our overall lack of concern for the environment is starting to catch up with us.  The Santa Fe area is forecast to get 4-6 inches of snow which is not normal. 

We originally had plans of picking up our RV this past October and heading directly to Florida for the winter months.  However we felt in order to properly market and promote Melissa's novel it would be better to stay here in Santa Fe to do so.  This marketing and promotion has taken a lot of time and effort on Melissa's part and some assistance on my part.  Soooooooo instead of sitting on a beach right now with our toes in the ocean we find ourselves waiting for 4 - 6 inches of snow to pile up!!  :>(

That's OK as with each little snow flake that comes down we know that this is our last snowy/cold winter.  Soooooo "let it snow-let it snow-let it snow!!"

It does not appear that my DW Melissa will go into the Yoga studio today so we will work on a few RV Journey administrative issues and also go over our RV BUDGET.  There are a lot of monetary factors to consider when RV-ing.  A budget is needed and staying within that budget when on a fixed income is of course very important.  RV PARK rental is a big item and there are only certain ways one can reduce that cost.
Boondocking is one way - this is where one stays in state/federal parks for a very reduced fee - the fee is reduced because there are little if any of the modern conviences found in RV PARKS.  Normally there is no electrical - water - sewer provided.  Our RV will be self-contained in that we will have a generator and can generate our own electricity and our "holding tanks" will let us be self-sufficient for about 1 week at a time and then some "tank emptying" will be needed.  We really are not the RUSTIC types and could maybe do this for a week at the most.  One can tend to save about $20-$25 per nite in these parks compared to the rental costs in RV PARKS where all the conviences are provided as part of your rent for your space.

Other ways to save are to stay in ONE NIGHT STOP OVERS" in parking lots at WALMART - SAM'S CLUB - and other establishments who allow "OVER-NIGHT RV PARKING."  Again no "services" are provided but it is only for one night.

One can reduce the cost of RV PARK rental by selecting a sight with only partial services - such as only electricity.  Our RV will have a fresh water tank of 40 gallons which with conservation should last us the best part of a week.  Our other holding tanks for grey water/black water would last at least 4 days.  Most RV PARKS have "dumping stations" so every 4 days or so we would be able to dump our tanks.

These limited services sites on average are about $10 per night cheaper than full service sites.  So a one week stay with limited services could save at least $50 o week.

There is also a practice referred to as "BOONMOOUCHING"  This is where you stay for a night or two or three in the driveway of a VERY GOOD FRIEND!!!!  Most homes have exterior electric plugs - there is a product called a "DOG BONE" which in our case will take our 30 amp electrical requirement and reduce it down to 15 amps thereby letting us plug into a house exterior outlet.  This will give limited electrical service but certainly enough to use the lights in the RV as well as keep the "HOUSE BATTERIES" charged.
This brings up another RV component - that of 12 volt DC power.  We will have a battery bank of 2 "HOUSE BATTERIES" which will allow us to use all those components controlled by the 12 volt system.  This would be things such as the water pump so we can use our stored fresh water supply for showers etc. Making a 2-3 night stay in the "BOONMOOCHING" mode possible.  This can save upwards to $35-$40 per night.  As I say you would need a "VERY GOOD FRIEND" to allow you to park in their driveway.

Additionally the cost of a full week at an RV PARK is at a reduce rate normally 7 nights will equate to the cost of 6 nights - so one can realize a $30 - $40 weekly savings.
This works for us as we plan on staying in most RV PARKS for 1 - 2 - 3 weeks and this of course will result in a savings on GAS which can be a big expense.  Our gas tank will be 55 gallons and at say $3.00 - $3.50 or so a gallon - WOW - lots of $$$$$$'s to fill up and at 8 - 10 miles per gallon DOUBLE WOW _ LOTs of  FILLUPS if you drive every day!!!!  So staying put will save money - I look at it as the RV equavilant of "CAR POOLING!!!"

Our planned interary has us staying some places for 3 weeks to a month!!!!
Our new Hondda Fit that will be in tow behind our RV gets on average 30-32 miles per gallon and will be our transportation while the RV is parked.
So, as I say lots to think about budget wise as with a home without wheels so careful planning and monitering is required.

YAWN-YAWN OK OK I hear y'all - BORING-BORING-BORING I know but perhaps some of you guys are interested  -   We'll see what the day brings and perhaps I will do some sketching and painting TWT  (Time Will Tell)

Until next posting - have a good day and enjoy yourself and others.

JR  :>)

Saturday, December 17, 2011


Hello Blog Buddies,

Well my DW Melissa is off to the Yoga studio to get setup for the workshop that she is teaching today.  It's important to have all the props set up ahead of time, so class time is not wasted on getting prepared.  There are bolsters - blankets, mats and all kinds of props for ease and comfort that are used.  This workshop is of the "Restorative" type and of course my DW tried out some of the poses on me last nite and I must say I felt restored and very rested afterwards!!!  This stuff really works!!!!

I think I've mentioned before that I suffered from leg cramps and foot arch cramps at night - OR - I DID suffer from these, to the point that I sometimes would be awake most of the night with very painful cramps.   My DW Melissa started me out on a program of Yoga stretches and I have to say that as long as I do these stretches let's say 5 out of seven nights - I DO NOT GET ANY CRAMPS!!!  If I get lazy and stop doing these stretches for a week or two (and that does happen) the night time cramps start up again!!  I was a Doubting Thomas but now I'm converted - it REALLY WORKS!!!  WOO - HOO YOGA!!!

Welllllll to occupy my day, I've decided to do a QUICKIE" painting which for the most part will be done in overall paint time of 15 minutes or less.  Paint time meaning I may stop during the painting process to let some passages of the piece dry a tad as I'm working wet into wet and the fear is that it is easy to create the 'DREADED MUD!!!!"  That is something we do not want as the painting will  be dull and lifeless - in other words a DULL PIECE OF CRAP-O-LA!!!  :>)
Paint will be applied with gusto and spontaneity with little regard for form, shape, exact color - these are my "loosening up" pieces done quickly and with fluidity in stroke and arm motion.

Sooooooo let's begin:

OK I reach for a color - BAM--- I pick up a tube of orange so oranges it will be - so I gather up 2 more tubes of various shades of orange, as well as three shades of blue ---- the compliment of orange.  I take the caps off all 6 tubes of paint - I know I've mentioned B4 that I do not use a palette.  I use what I call "squeeze and scoop"
I gather my paint onto my brush or palette knife by squeezing the tube of paint and scooping some from the tube - it's how I paint - I've never used a palette.  The main reason I don't - is because - I look at the function of a palette as a place you put dabs of paint and the surface of the palette is for MIXING the paint.  Welllllllll I do not squeeze out a bunch of colors in some sort of sequence as I rarely know what exact colors I will be using as spontaneity is part of my style - also I NEVER mix colors - I BLEND them directly on the surface upon which I'm painting on.  If you for example BLEND 2 or 3 colors together directly on the surface, this all but eliminates the chance of the "DREADED MUD"  as well as BLENDING allows all the colors blended to show through - a much better presentation of color - lively, fresh and invigorating - not BORING as with MIXING color.

OK enough with the digression-------------- time for some color onto the vase and the oranges.  I'm not showing the progress of this as I'm painting so fast that stopping to take photos would be counter-productive.

A close up to show some of the "IMPLIED" detail of shadow areas - light coming from the viewer left.  I did this because it allows me to have shadow on the right sides of the oranges as well as cast shadow up onto the pot as well as cast shadow onto the surface the oranges sit on.  Sort of allowing for a maximum of shadow from the direction of the light source as well as cast shadows.   This should produce a more dramatic LIGHT/DARK pattern to the painting.


Some tweaks will be needed here and there but I'll let it dry somewhat first as the paint is very juicy and wet - Ya gotta know when to hold em and when to fold em!!!
This as a round cylinder vase and actually with no color at all as it is clear glass.  I've used it many times in still life work and each time I change the color. 
The painting is 8 x 8 on canvas panel - actual paint time was 11 minutes and my WAIT time was approx. 7 minutes.


JR  :>)

Friday, December 16, 2011

Good Afternoon Blog Buddies

Yo Blog Buddies,

Well, kinda a chilly day today - 19 degrees at 6am and now 12:40 it is 23 degrees.
We went for a walk over at the Santa Fe National Cemetery.  Two veterans were being buried in two separate areas of the cemetery both with full ceremony of gun salutes and taps.  Very moving with the cold air - wind and white grave stones and the white snow on the ground.

My foot is not fully over the "bout with the gout" yet, but after almost 2 weeks I figure it might be better to start exercising it rather then letting it become sedentary!!

Today will be a quiet day with my DW Melissa getting her Yoga workshop all organized for tomorrow.  There is a lot of preparation that goes into putting on a workshop.  She needs to sort of choreograph all the Yoga positions and moves that she will be giving instruction on and make sure that they sort of flow together and she does not find herself standing in the middle of the room - saying - "Hmmmmm what shall we do next?"  :>) 

We have a couple of more RV reservations to make - I did the research on them earlier this morning and in a while we'll go over them - make some decisions and set them into motion.  These plans are for the month of October 2012 and will encompass going from Massachusetts (visit relatives again) , to New York (visit friends) , to Pennsylvania ( visit Amish country - we love the Amish culture), Tennessee (visit Nashville), Georgia ( just a stop over ) and down on into Florida for November-December and January - before going over to Texas and Arizona for the remainder of the winter on into spring.  And then---------------------------

Unless you enjoy cold weather - I hope it is warmer where you are!!

Take care my friends and perhaps tomorrow I may work on a painting while DW is off teaching Yoga.

JR   :>)

Wednesday, December 14, 2011


Hello Again Blog Buddies,

Well-------------as it turned out my DW Melissa went into work at the Yoga Studio as one of the instructors decided to teach her class today.  Soooooooooo for me that means another session in front of Mr. ED the easel.

As I've mentioned before, I'm always trying to loosen up my style and be just shy of sloppy.  My motto regarding DETAIL is LESS IS MORE.  I do not enjoy doing detailed paintings - my attention span is severely lacking in attention!  :>) 

Soooooo quite often I challenge myself to do a painting as fast as I can and certainly under 15 minutes based on a 5x7 size.  It is an exercise in loosening up and not thinking (which I'm not very good at!!) also about NO composition - color- form of any of those painterly terms that most people say you should do before touching brush to the surface.  To that - for this I say HOG WASH!!!! 

Before it turned over to WINTER, we had some lovely autumn days and we also had some very brief snow squalls up in the Sangre' de Christo mountains.  I love the Sangre' de Christo mountains - it is quite and very beautiful up there.  They are a very short distance from us and in fact we can see a rather large expanse of these mountains from our TINY UNIT as we could from the house we sold.  I normally go up to about 9500 feet above sea level - a short distance into the woods as I'm scared of wild animals - and no matter where you look there is a painting waiting to be done.  I always take reference photos and this 5x7 painting was done today, just a few minutes ago, on gallery wrapped canvas wet into wet and completed in about 12 minutes.  As I say a lesson in looseness and LESS IS MORE.  No thought - no pre-planning - just paint it!!!

I love to start these with a round brush and some Payne's Grey paint and just create a very quick 1 - 2 minute sketch - I mean there is nothing hard about three tree trunks!!!  DUH!!!

First a blank 7x5 canvas

I found this canvas under my painting table so I must have kicked it a couple of times as the canvas has dents in it!!!  No matter as the wetness of the paint and little bit of water I use will cause it to shrink up enough for the dents to dissipate.

Then a 1-2 minute sketch of tree trunks DUH!!!!  So far - nothing to write home about!

OK - now I will very quickly add various elements to this DUH sketch such as:

Aspen tree bark
BG forest with indications of trees in the distance
FG indication of grass and autumn color
Indication of a splattering of light snow from the squall

This will be quick with no Blah-blah-blah as 12 minutes is not very long!

First aspen tree bark - BAM!!

Next some BG forest with indications of distant trees - BAM!!

Next FG indication of grass color - BAM!!

Next some autumn color with snow splatter indications BAM!!!


Some closeups for my buddies who say


This is how I loosen up my style in order to not "over work" a painting and to present a visual cohesive appearing painting without an abundance of DETAIL

( Can't see the dents in the canvas now - can ya )

I call it fun and to me very educational

Soooooo my Blog Buddies - I hope you enjoyed this quick 5x7 demo

Until next time

JR  :>)