It has been a busy month traveling to Sanibel Island and later to Ponte Vedra Beach on the Atlantic. Most people do not realize just how far from to the western edge of the Panhandle, Pensacola and Gulf Breeze lie.It is a good 10 to 12 hour drive to Sanibel from here and a 5 or 6 hour drive to Ponte Vedra Beach, which is a straight shot east to the Atlantic.
A client asked I do studies of her view from her Sanibel home for a commission. Stopping in the Tampa/St Pete area I stayed with friends in their home on a canal with a view of Tampa Bay. I also had the pleasure of visiting the new Salvador Dali Museum in St. Petersburg which I am certain is one of the finest art museums I have ever seen! Fabulous new architecture, on Tampa Bay with a collection of close to 100 original oil paintings and 900+ works in all! Very impressive.
Sanibel was a pleasure as it has always been for me. I have been visiting those islands since 1969 when I first traveled there with my family to shell and to fish. We were thrilled to have a hurricane hit while we were there. (nowadays an evacuation would be required) The day after the storm the roads were full of shells! What joy!
A private showing was held last week in the lovely community of Ponte Vedra Beach, FL. The viewers were highly enthusiastic of all styles of my work and several sales were made. The Atlantic Beaches are quite different than that of the Panhandle and beautiful in their own right. Very impressive and new to me was the eastern shore of the St. John’s River, in nearby Jacksonville. My friend took me to visit the home and studio of his life-long buddy and artist C. Ford Riley. This master realist paints what he loves, the natural environment which surrounds him. The photo above is of Mark and Ford as we enjoyed a sandwich and the view from Ford’s dock. To me it is heaven on earth.
Have a blessed day!