Boulder Watershed Sunset: From atop Mt. Arikaree, looking North along the Continental Divide to Mt. Navaho and the distant Longs Peak.

The surest task of an artist is the making of a self that has the capacity to create, and directing this creative capacity toward a significant direction. This task must be approached with great patience and commitment, understanding that self-as-artist is an every day & lifelong pursuit.

This making of self has meant finding what leads me, and pursuing the thread of that lead. Immersion in and appreciation of Nature has been a constant pursuit, twin to my pursuit of the arts, assuring that art and life retain the living quality of intuitive response.
Immersion in nature was, for a time, of a magnitude of order beyond what is normally possible. Through my late teens and all through my 20's my summers were on the Continental Divide above Boudler, Colorado at the Boulder Watershed. Most of those 12 summers were spent as Patrol/Caretaker, hiking the 8,000 acre property and keeping it free of all human trespassers. Two glacial valleys, 14 lakes, 5 thirteen thousand foot peaks, a herd of 70 elk, moose, bear, mountain lions, Golden Eagles, Pica, Pine Martens, and Cutthroat Trout- I was the land's protector hiking 10 to 20 miles per day, with elevation gains and losses of more than 10,000 feet, mostly in the back country with no trails. This experience allowed a creative wayfinding that has allowed me to navigate the arts in a manner that listens with an intuition for intuition.

My work draws from years of immersion in the alpine landscape, and while this experience is not rendered literally, it informs my approach. This process is intuitive, based upon a life-long exploration of the visual arts. In the way of constant walking- through forests, fording rivers, over mountains, the practice of immersive movement acts as a vehicle for artistic exploration, rather than an end in itself.

North Arapahoe Sunset. Boulder Watershed from Mt .Arikaree.

Arapahoe Glacier from Silver Lake at the Boulder Watershed

View from the Bunkhouse at the Boulder Watershed. Silver Lake at 10,000 feet in elevation with 3 mile rainbow.

If I want to make a claim of identifying with Nature, then I also must include my cattle-ranching father up in the wilds of Montana working the family homestead ranch he grew up on. He died at 72 from cancer, in 2009. The following images offer a window into a realm of being that is lost to the modern experience.

Small oil portrait of my sister and I with our Father, visiting in 1979 from Colorado where we lived with our mother & second step-father. This painting was completed in 2009 while living with him in Hospice care. I painted it at his bedside as a last work for him.

This upper pasture drops a few thousand feet in elevation, and back up the opposite side. All full of wildflowers, springs, forests, deer, bear, elk, eagles, and sometimes a wolf. To the North East runs the blue swell of the Highwood Mountains on the Great Plain of the Missouri.

This is from about the same spot as the picture above, but in December. The highest continually open paved pass in the state is just a 20 minute drive off the right side of the picture, home to Showdown ski area.

Graduated from Belt High School, he will soon head to Denver for electrical trade school, and return to start a business with GE in Billings, MT. He won't return to live at the ranch again until 1978 to begin his own pure-bred Angus herd.

A cancer survivor, back on his feet at the ranch at the new split-rail fence my sister and I put in out front.

My father out with the horses around 1940. His first time off the ranch he was around 5 years old.

He would saddle up his paint for evening rides on the high ridges, watching the sun set behind the distant Rocky Mountains and returning in the soft twilight.

My view from the saddle on the last trail ride moving from winter to summer pasture, bringing in my father's Black Angus mixed in with our renter's Herefords. 

This is the view to the North, toward Butte and the plain of the Missouri River, and far in the distance- Canada.

Baling the hayfields on the high meadows, with Ben the cow dog.

Every winter and into spring is calving season. Being a good shepherd makes for gentle and happy cows.

Cattle need to be fed twice a day, all winter long. A 4-wheel drive tractor comes in handy.

The ladies wait for me to cut the twine so the hay can be rolled out.

Cow and calf pair in early summer, halfway to the high meadows.

A twilight thunderstorm in July pulls an ultraviolet triple rainbow as the sun sets behind the Rocky Mountains 70 miles to the West.

more ranch life can be seen here:

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