Eleven Thousand Acres, 2010
The title, Eleven Thousand Acres, refers to Ulupalakua Ranch joining the Maui Coastal Land Trust, an amazing statement all by itself. The painting is a depiction of a little patch of Hawaiian moa growing in the curve of a fallen branch of ohia lehua on an outcropping of rock. The moa is protected from the suffocating kikuyu grass by virtue of its fortuitous location.
Ulupalakua itself is a fortuitous location for the return of such species in the protective care of Sumner Erdman, Art Medeiros, the MCLT, et al. In the shadow of a grandfather koa tree at the edge of an ohia lehua forest overlooking the Ulupalakua coastline stands eleven thousand acres reaching forward to protect the past. This painting celebrates their stewardship.
A personal aside regarding this painting...
A few hours before the sun came up on a Friday morning I became aware I was having a vivid dream. Although I was not aware of it until that moment, I'd had this dream before. In the dream I'd covered my canvas with linseed oil. I was painting in very precise "rays of light" across the foreground of my painting using a fluffy 4 inch household paint roller. These "rays" were turning out perfectly using the roller. I knew if I went back to sleep without writing this down, I'd forget the dream as I had once before. I fumbled around in the dark to find my cellphone on the headboard and dashed off an email "note to self". Just to make sure, I cc'd my wife, Jill. It took two dreams and a cryptic email, but I eventually got the message. The next day I painted exactly as I'd done in the dream and it worked beautifully. As I stood back admiring the way the sunlight appeared to stream through the painting, I got a call in my studio from Jill, puzzled by my email. She'd thought I'd finally gone off the deep end and suggested I reread my "note to self" email. It read, "Do u have a fluffy roller I can use to roll in my beams of light?"