California Dreaming on such a summer’s day

Cali Dreaming 9x12 in. oil on paper

Cali Dreaming 9×12 in. oil on paper

Why in the world would you do a painting of California in Taiwan? Ha, I knew you were going to ask me that! Well, even if you weren’t, I’ll answer that question anyway. I have a special place in my heart for California. Despite all the negative press about the economy, pollution, high taxes, and everything else, I always had a lifetime fondness of this special place.

It’s where I visited some family in my childhood during the summer. I must have taking 5 or 6 trips to the LA area. What I remember besides Universal Studios and Disneyland are the drives to the beach. Going through the tunnels in the mountains where my grandfather used to beep his car horn loudly. The amazing mountain scenery that was around me. The beaches that were clean with the mountains in the distance and the palm trees swaying near me. And the space! There was so much space from one town to another, the amount of land, and the dryness of the desert. Oh how that seeped into my being. No wonder I was grouchy when I returned back to New Jersey. I literally visited my first planet-Planet California.

I have visited just several times since then as an adult.

But New Mexico intercepted and called my spirit instead and I lived there for 5 years before moving to Asia.

So this painting was from an old photo when I drove up the California coast in 1997. It reminded me why I loved the place. It still had the magic and raw beauty I grew to love. And now I finally got around to paint it. I search deeper than what is usually offered from a photo. I go into my emotional memories and tap something special.

Here is the result. It’s not just a photo, but a state of mind.  Forever etched.