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|“Conservation is a state of harmony between men and land.” — Aldo Leopold Gaviota Creek runs to the Pacific year round even after many years of drought. Its beautiful riparian area supports black bears, California newts, Western pond turtles, California red-legged frogs, two-striped gartersnakes, and threatened Southern steelhead trout.|
Partnering with Coastal Ranches Conservancy, The Oak Group will exhibit paintings and photographs revealing Gaviota Creek’s unique ecosystem, as well as watersheds throughout the entire Gaviota Coast, November 1-30 in the Faulkner Gallery of Central Library, downtown Santa Barbara.
Half the show’s proceeds will support Coastal Ranches Conservancy in its efforts to revitalize the Gaviota creek bed and floodplain, removing concrete obstacles that block breeding migrations of steelhead and re-routing the existing access road for Gaviota State Park Beach.
To learn more please visit http://coastalranchesconservancy.org
The Oak Group
for a reception
Faulkner Gallery, Santa Barbara Central Library40 East Anapamu, Santa Barbara, CA
Monday – Thursday 10:00 – 7:00
Friday & Saturday 10:00 – 5:30
Sunday 1:00 – 5:00
I’ve been painting a couple of pictures of just slices of life around the house. Lauren sweeping the front porch (apparently while her lazy husband sits around and paints). My daughter sketching at the table… I wasn’t concerned with getting a likeness, but rather with being playful and expressive in the brushwork and catching all the colors of the light. I think I want to experiment more with having figures in paintings.
Sandstone outcroppings and Coast Live Oaks… I’ve been spending several afternoons painting in oak forests the last couple of weeks. The acorns are ripening and the squirrels, scrubjays and a deer were all inspecting their progress as I was painting.
I was running around Lake Los Carneros a couple of weeks ago and enjoying how the red light climbed across the mountains. The time of the sunrise is subjective, depending upon where you are on the mountain or in a canyon. I saw two sunrises that morning on different sides of the lake.
The days are growing crisper, the mornings cooler, the dry air clearer, the angle of light more slanted and the mind more reflective. The calendar pages have autumn pictures and pumpkin soup sounds good again.
This palms in this iconic line arcing elegantly around to Refugio Point have been falling one by one the past few years as more extreme tidal events eat at the soil holding their roots. I’m grateful for the young people who are marching and standing up worldwide to try to wake our policy makers and business leaders up to the truth that we live in relationship with the natural world and that we need to honor and tend to the delicately balanced ecosystems that we are an inseparable part of.
When Lauren and I were first married we used to spend most of a day walking from the distant eucalyptus groves, out over the bluffs, around the slough, through IV and UCSB, down the bike trail, out on More Mesa, through the horse trails in Hope Ranch, through westside and finally downtown. There we’d sit our tired legs down at a cafe, eat a big meal and take the bus all the way back home. It was our favorite date… so simple but so full of interesting people watching, nature exploration and places to appreciate the many sides of our town.
As I made this small painting, good memories from college of running out from Isla Vista, around the slough and up the path to the Ellwood bluffs came back to me. It was a new exotic landscape for me back in 1993 when I started at UCSB, but now I know these trails like the back of my hand. Funny how a place becomes a part of you as you become a part of a place.
It is fascinating when you paint a white object to notice all of the different colors that reflect into the shadows. You can see here where the colored light from the red rooftops, the blue sky and green grass influence the shadows.
Just a typical summer afternoon on the Ellwood Bluffs… I love the filtered light that comes through the windblown eucalyptus trees in their sweet groves at the edge of the cliffs. Hope you can us at the Open Studio Event this weekend!