Tagged: amtrak

studio breakdown

marathon page

Made it late and left early to the Palette & Chisel’s 12 hour life drawing marathon. Didn’t come away with anything stellar. Been consumed with buying, packing, and moving to new digs and will flatly state that my drawing has suffered. Looking forward to heading out on tour to hopefully knock off the rust.

Starbuck's @ north & wells El studies  Hartford from the Hilton  Lake Bunggee  bar nerd  Bill fishing Elephant capital @ Brown  Providence sculpture Amtrak snoozers The Butterfly Svengali Winkworth Freddie watching the boob tube    Wall of Barney G Laguardia commuter w/ braid pie shop typist O'Hare lunch O'Hare headed Westline crew turning it out at 13 Coins, Seattle Flinch Salt Lake City layover

Man, when I say “Slung” I wasn’t joking. What a crazy month. Bought a place and in the midst of painting, having electrical work done and moving into the new place, I had to work in New England & NYC, took a side trip to Philly, flew back to Chicago long enough to do laundry, paperwork and then get ready to jet to Washington and Montana for whirl wind tour of several cities and colleges. Still a bit too much running around and not enough time drawing what I witnessed. Have to return to NYC and hang out on the High Line, was a bit crowded but what a vantage point of Chelsea and Hell’s Kitchen. Plus you could see Jersey as it starts to create the Palisades. Using the Pitts and fountain pens. Back in a Moleskine watercolor pad and also have a hefty and lovely ledger book going.

Sometimes, I get behind in posting to BND, especially during the Fall when I’m tripping about the country lecturing and demonstrating at various colleges, stores and events. You can follow me at:  doncolleysroadtrip.com. Cheers.

Headed out across the country for my Fall tour on September 10th. Denver was the first stop. The above statue is dedicated to the 3,000,000 young folks that worked in Roosevelt’s “Tree Army”, the Civilian Conservation Corps. 55,000 worked in New Mexico alone. When you hear the mantra that government is the problem, not that it can’t be problematic, and that business and the “market” will be our salvation, business was slow in coming to the rescue in the 30’s in this country. If the market is so dependable, why did 3,000,000 Americans feel a need to trek off into the outback with shovels and picks? Just a Thoreau like need to get back to nature?


Got to Denver 9 hours before my bags, compliments Delta. Knew it would be tricky when my flight schedule had me landing in Minneapolis for my connecting flight at 4:35 PM and the flight to Denver boarded at 4:35 PM. we landed 18 minutes late and a mad dash to the next gate just got me in before the door closed. Once in Denver, got off the bus from the airport and thanks to the kindness of strangers, made it to the ballpark where I met Tim. Tim provided the lift in his pedicab to my hotel while holding a running conversation about things Denver, etc. Worked a demo the next day at Meininger Fine Art Supply, the oldest in Denver, and many parts West for that matter. Henry Meininger’s grandfather opened the store 132 years ago and has provided quite the slew of artists with gear including Charles Russel and Frederick Remmington.


That’s Judd Meininger, great grandson of the original owner of H.R. Meininger Fine Art Supply, and wife Olivia, takin’ in a Colorado Rockies ballgame and a strip of chocolate covered bacon. Hell yeah I had a bite. Judd is quite the omnivore and a fired up cat with a vigorous appetite for life, period.


Went to the Great state of Kal-A-Forn-Eye-Ayyyyyyyyy to do a mess load of demos. Stayed with my nephew Brett in Redondo Beach right ‘ere on de water. That’s him above serfin’ the ‘net and sportin’ a tee with Mr. Lee’s not-so-likeness on it. Brett is one of the truely good humans on this planet. My 2 brothers and I must’ve drained all the rascalness outta the gene pool and all that was left by the time Brett came along was kindness.

Below left is the sketch made whilst waitin’ for Brett at LAX. Next to that a street sketch I whipped out of a pub T rider coolin’ his heels in the shade. I did a demo right after that at Nick Gallo’s  Blue Rooster Art Supply where I met my grand niece Ariel for the first time. We went to The Hard Rock Cafe afterwards and I drew this elephant head she sculpted while she knocked out the sketch, to the right of the elephant, of me.




Pitt Brush Pens featured almost exclusively on these pages with a liberal addition of white China Marker. I like to draw over top of grease pencil marks with the Pitt pens, especially on toned paper as it produces a contrasting luminous effect.


The second image above, of the dude lookin’ dazed and confused, is my boy out there in the Bay, the Deacon of Dog Patch, Michael Recchiuti. If chocolate is your thing, Michael is without doubt your Messiah.

Taking in an early mornig pastry and a cup of hot coco at Piccino, a sweet little cafe and restaurant owned by two of Michael’s Dog Patch chums, Wayne and Sher.


Before heading off to Fargo I stopped by the Occupy Chicago demonstration near the Federal Reserve and the Chicago Board of Trade as I made my way to Union Station. There I managed a quick sketch of a bandanna clad dude workin’ up a fever on a makeshift drum kit. I spoke briefly to a few people without being able to locate any organizers or as referred to, supervisors. One fellow was a machinist who had difficulty keeping employed so was heading back to college in pursuit of the next phase in his evolving work life. He couldn’t find anyone at O.C. who had much info about the movement or it’s intentions. Another fellow, who seemed a bit street worn, wouldn’t answer any questions, kept standing in my way and telling me to draw him until I told him to scram. At that point he seemed to decide to actually engage me and said he had lost his job as a security personnel and was frustrated with the leadership at OC because they never wanted to hear anything he had to say. He said it had been his opinion that trying to occupy Grant Park overnight was a bad idea because they would be in clear violation of an easily enforceable curfew. Something the mayor acted on. I had a train to catch and strode off as the police were telling the demonstrators that they had to move.


Kim Bromley whipped out this doodle of me on his business card. At Kim’s invitation I gave a presentation to his drawing class at NDSU.    While I was demonstrating before Minnesota State Univ. Morehead art students by drawing professor Trygve Olson, Trygve was busy drawing me. T.O. possesses an agile and camera quick gestural style. I wasn’t making things easy on him by constantly hopping off the stool to point out features about him that drew my eye. Check out his work, political cartoons, sketches and super fresh watercolors at TrygveOlson.com


Had to catch a 1:45 AM bus out of town to Bozeman and having already checked out that morning, I looked to find places to hang  after my last demo that afternoon at MSUM, all the while dragging around a portfolio of drawings and a 50 lb suitcase stuffed with clothes, sketchbooks and drawing supplies. Ate a leisurely meal at a Mexican restaurant downtown. Closed the joint. Went to a coffee shop a couple doors down where I ran into one of the students who had attended my demo at MSUM earlier that day. Had a swell time talking and looking over his drawings. Closed that joint. Hauled my ass and gear over to The Side Street Grille and Pub. Enjoyed a beer and the goings on there. Lively Metal and Rig Rock atmosphere.

Fargo looked to be thrivin’. 3.5% unemployment in North Dakota! Word was the pay in the oil fields was $100 K and Mikey D’s was paying $16-$18/hr at stores servicing the man-camps up in the oil fields.





model with insulin pump

Viktoria snoozing

Amanda sprawled on platform

sleeping Angel

Amtrak snoozer

Topsy turvy
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