Old Fuel Depot, Santa Rosa Island. Feb.28, 2010

Charles Hawthorne use to teach his students, "It is a higher art; to take something ugly and create something beautiful out of it!"

This is what an artist must contemplate when making the decision; whether to creat art for art sake, or art for commerce sake.

Cliche' central says: "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder," and, "Art is subjective".

This painting was one of the two of my paintings that didn't sell in the fund raiser for the Santa Cruz Island Foundation back in 1995. At the reception the only murmur about it was that, "it was not a pretty site"...(duh?)

From this comment I gathered for the fund raiser, including those who knew the Vail-Vickers Ranch, and all it's positives/negatives, viewed this image as something they weren't proud of. 'Why would I paint the gasoline depot?', they wondered.

Here's my motive; I saw it for something beautiful!. The color variations, textures, shapes, etc. were unpredictable. It was merely about me- noticing the subtleties and contrasts in life, and trying to document them the best I could at the time. I sought out the raw poetry of the place, more than literal content of 20th century Island life.

I recall that I was sheltered from the wind, but also quite hot in the sun. Ah, the minor challenges of plein-air painting: Git'er done!

Old Fuel Depot, Santa Rosa Island
8"x16" W/C 1995
Painting subject to prior sale