Friday, June 1, 2007


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24" x 18" oil on canvas, 2006

Close up of large black pressure gauge
Close up of large white water cooler gauge

This is my most recent finished oil painting, completed in 2006. I estimate the time it took to be two to two-and-a-half weeks but I can't be sure since I started the painting in 2005 and went for months in between painting sessions. I do know that the large white gauge took 6 hours to complete.

The subject is an air compressor/generator used for powering mining drill bits that I found up above Independence Mine in Hatcher Pass, just outside of my hometown of Palmer, Alaska. I'll have to post photos of the entire thing sometime - it's built into its own trailer and is clear up a mountain side, left to die and rust. Abandoned things are my favorite subject matter because of their unknown history. They invite the viewer to imagine who first owned it, who left it there, is anyone still alive who ever knew the object, was it working when it was abandoned? Some day there may be no humans alive who know what the item was really all about, how it worked, how it behaved, any quirks it might of had. Catalogue descriptions will of faded and the item itself may be rusted to bits and all we'll have left are any possible photographs (or paintings!) that folks like me thought to take along the way.

Here are some in-progress photos I took for posterity:
1) Canvas drawing
2) Blocking
3) Shadows added
4) More details

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