31 July 2006

The Tower of London

I needed to post this photo on the web in order to change my header. What Do you think?
The cool blue shadows do not seem to show up on Firefox. On Safari it has a creepy blue glow.
Now that I have begun to understand how my template works, my space can become more personal, duh!
You know all of this, but it helps me.

30 July 2006

Let me go...

I tried to tell myself that I could not remember how long it has been. When you're around I lie to myself. I know exactly how long it's been down to the hour. I can see me, leaving you, in my mind so clear it could be real. Why do I let you control me?

It's not like you care, I know for a fact that you don't. You had not even given me a second thought when I walk away. We both knew it was for the best. I had thought of you once or twice with fondness. I never thought of finding you again. I was free of you.
I had moved on with my life. MY LIFE! What I had was yours before. Everything I did, I did for you. And you never thanked me once. You gave me what I needed from you, no more , no less. You asked for nothing in return.

This time I had convinced myself it was finally over. I thought about what I would do if our paths crossed again. I was going to be strong, and resist your charms, keep my distance and walk away still free. My life intact.

Out of the blue, I walked around the corner, like I had done everyday. Only today I ran face first into you........

My mind was racing and blank at the same time. An eternity passed in the next few seconds. And as if we had never been apart, we took hold of each other and you consumed me as I breathed you in. My strength was gone, I had given you my life with out so much as whimper.

When I woke the next morning, for a split second I thought it may have been a dream.
But when I saw you there, it hit me like a tidal wave. I fell to my knees and sobbed. What had I done? Where was my strength? Where was my self respect? Where was my will power?

I pulled myself together, grabbed my things and left with out a word. Hating myself for not putting up a fight. I wanted to punish myself. I wished I could drive off a cliff and put an end to it. But then you win and only Precious and Mr. Man would suffer. Not me. Not you. If I want to be free I have to leave you for good. I have to be able to resist you. I know when I return you still be there. It's who you are. I have to be the one who walks away. I have to tell you to release me and let me be. I have to tell myself to let you go for good.

It starts to rain and I feel God telling me I can wash my self clean and start over fresh. He is giving me yet another chance. But it is up to me. I have to go home and put an end to this twisted relationship because it will eventually kill me, or my family, or both. It will consume me and ruin everything I am and want to be.

I already know it will be harder to walk away this time than it was the first. Your hold on me is powerful. You have held me for so long, so very long.

You're like a weed I can't kill. An internal scratch I can't itch no matter how hard I try. A wound that won't heal.

How can I be so weak? Why can't I say NO? NO MORE! Kill me or let me go but be done with me. I can't take it any more!

I hate myself for loving you...

29 July 2006

Favorite Places...

Five of my favorite photos of three of my favorite place; Florence, Venice and Paris. Not necessarily in that order.

28 July 2006

Not so Vane.....

For the two of you who read this blog, you may notice I have edited the name. "Mad William Vane" is now "Mad William".
I got a good laugh out of the whole pirate name thing, but I never did understand what the Vane was about. I am definitely a Mad William, so there you have it. No more Vane.

Mr. Man

I LOVE this photo. It was taken in La Jolla California in December 2005, about two days before Christmas. It was the runner-up for our holiday card last year.
I can't help but wonder what he is looking at or what is going through his mind. Does he see the endless possibilities that are out there waiting for him? Great travels, adventures and loves?

Snif snif, blubber blubber.......

27 July 2006

From the "WTF are you thinking?" file.

It is a beautiful day in the art world. I am sitting with a clients who are considering a $25,000.00 Tissot etching. A fabulous work, museum quality.
A young man walks in, sits down 'between' my clients, pulls out a stack of bent and dirty photos of 'his' work and starts to tell them why they should be buying his paintings instead of whatever it is that I am showing them.
So I ask him,"WTF are you doing?"
He tells me the owner is going to start showing his work in the gallery so he wanted to get a jump on things.

As I politely took him by the dirty dread lock mess he called hair and showed him out the door, I mentioned that "I" am the owner of the gallery, and there will be snowmen in Phoenix before he ever shows his work in my space. I shut the door behind him and locked it. He was still yelling obscenities at me through the glass and reminding everyone with in several blocks of ear shot that he was a great artist and I was making a big mistake. I would be sorry!

I am sorry I didn't drop kick him as I showed him the door.

My clients sat there with their mouths open, stunned at what had just happened.
We had a good laugh about it and they went on to buy the work. They will have a great story to go along with the piece they will no doubt share with their friends.

I wish I could say that I had made this up. This actually happened. Sadly it is not uncommon.

So, to young artists everywhere. WTF are you thinking?
Do art schools teach nothing about the business end of art? Have you never been into any type of business in your lives? Did you just crawl out from under a rock?

Ok, having been to art school I know the answer to my first question. Art schools do not teach anything about the business of art and what they do teach is of little use in the real world.

If you want to get your work into a gallery there are certain things you must do.
I do offer a service if you would like a coach, you may contact me.
But here are a few pointers:

1) Make an appointment, and be on time!

2) If you can not get an appointment, bring a professional looking portfolio you can leave. Photos, CD's, DVD's work best.

3)Make sure your art will fit into the gallery you are approaching. Do not waste everyone's time showing abstract work to a traditional gallery or vise-versa.

4)Take a bath, wash your hair and dress accordingly. If you show up in cut offs, a tidied shirt and flip flops, you have no chance, no matter how good you think you are.

5) Last and most important of my free advice, NEVER, NEVER interrupt gallery personnel. Think about how you would feel if a consultant was trying to sell one of your paintings and was interrupted by another artist trying to get their work into the gallery. It is unprofessional and its rude and it will end your chances before they start.

25 July 2006

Irrational Blubbering, part 2

As fast as the sentimental moments come they can go.
Mr. Man just threw the King of all tantrums. I could picture me as Homer Simpson grabbing him by the neck with both hands,"WHY YOU LITTLE...."

In reality, I stood and let him go for awhile thinking he would soon stop. After about 5 minutes I decided a nice warm bath would calm him down. Needless to say I got more water than he did. Another 5 minutes passed with no sign of him letting up. Trying to put his pajamas on was like the WWF Battle Royal. We wrestled to a draw.

After what felt like an hour of him screaming at the top of his little lungs, throwing things, kicking and swinging at me I had had enough. BEDTIME!

He cried for another 10 minutes or so. Honestly it was heart breaking to hear him in such distress, and even worse not knowing what caused it to begin with. He eventually stopped and called for Daddy to come tuck him in, and I did. Then a call for Mommy to read him a book, which she did.
Angels and Demons. It is a fine line.

Irrational Blubbering...

I am not sure exactly when it happened but I am sure it had something to do with becoming a father. I have become irrationally emotional. I have never considered myself a typical male. I grew up a rough and tumble boy, playing sports, hunting, fishing etc. Although I do have a sensitive side, probably from being artist. Although I like to think that I am an evolved human being and am capable of seeing things in a different light if you will.(I will rant about this topic in length at another time)

Anywho...I found myself on the verge of tears today because Mr. Man went to pre-school for the first time. The part that got to me was the fact that he adjusted instantly. He walked in, said hello, looked around the room and just went to play. I sat there for a while for me to adjust. Then said goodbye, he waved, said bye Daddy. I got the secret hand shake and he went back to his business. No biggy.

As I drove back to the gallery I was overwhelmed with emotion. He didn't need me, he doesn't love me, what have I done wrong, I could die today and he wouldn't notice... Blubber, blubber.

All of which is TOTALLY irrational! I know this. None of these things are true. Precious and I are raising a healthy adventurous boy who already loves new things the way we do. Everything new is a chance to learn and grow, it's a good thing.

This is partially why I started the daily photo of Mr. Man. Children grow so fast. The last two years have been a blur. In the blink of an eye he will be an adult with a life of his own and he will be gone. Even writing this makes me want to cry.
You see what I mean, Irrationally emotional. He is 2 and I am already sad that he will leave home someday.

Sob sob, blubber blubber........I am told that it is, Unconditional Love. An unexplainable, supernatural, indestructible bond between parent and child that can turn a grown man into a blubbering fool, with no more than a easy transition into daycare. Blubber.....

23 July 2006

Fire up the grill!

Traffic traffic everywhere and not a dollar to be found.....

Ok that is not exactly true. Ice cream, candy and doughnuts are HUGE here. It is the only thing I see people buying. They sure are not buying art. They all like to go on and on about how beautiful our gallery is and how much they like to come in. They always bring in their family and friends to look around.

Thank you all for the compliments, but, BUY SOMETHING. Compliments don't feed the westie.(we don't have a bulldog)

All of this in mind, it is time to announce the opening of "3364", our underground restaurant. It has been in the planning stages for 6 months and now is as good a time as any to give it a go.

The food around here is horrid and these folks all are definitely eaters. I have also begun the ground work for a new cafe here in town. Simple, elegant, and most important, DEEP FRIED.(not everything) Sorry back to 3364....

Opening night will be invite only for 8 guests whom we feel will spread the word and give us a running start. We will have "Culinary experiences" once a month to begin with just to see how it goes. We are unlicensed after all. $45.00 a head, in advance will get you the following. Along with one of the best ocean views in the county. (the photo is only part of the view)

Tonight we test the first menu.

So far we are thinking;

Yellow tomato gazpacho,

Individual nut crusted Brie with a spicy jelly drizzle and grilled squaw bread.

A small mixed green salad with some crushed cashews, mandarin orange slices and a light champagne vinaigrette

Rack of lamb,(rare to mid-rare at the most) stuffed with honey roasted garlic, just a touch of the spicy jelly drizzle from the Brie, with grilled asparagus tossed in the champagne vinaigrette,
and a few roasted red potatoes with seasoning.

And finally, a melon sorbet.

If anyone would like I will have Port available also.

We will see how it goes tonight. It sounds good on paper. Ms. Glaze, if you read this, I would love to have your input.

21 July 2006


My old friend "Insomnia" has come to visit. For the last 9 days now I have slept no more than 4 hours per night. Fortunately I do most of my painting at night after the family has gone to bed. This painting is an insomnia induced creation. She is part of a series I call the "Madettes". It has nothing to do with anything I just wanted to post it.

I am freaking out about our gallery. Business is seriously slow in town. Everyone is feeling it but that is of little consolation.

In the last 20 years I have been in 5 states with 7 different galleries. All of them in major cites with thriving economies, and business was good even when things were slow.

This time it is very different. This time Precious and I own the gallery. We do have partners who help us out quite a bit, and they keep telling us they are behind us 100%, which helps. However, this time we are not in a big city. This is a very small place that lives and dies by its tourists. When things are slow, they're bad.
I guess I have put a lot more pressure on myself with this gallery because of Mr. Man. There is a human being that looks to me for his very survival. I can't let him down. I have to make sure that he is taken care of no matter what.

The thoughts of where we go next have already started to enter my mind. Moving again in the next year. Starting over, again.

I don't mind the starting over part. The art world is small and there is always some place else to go. Because of my son I have begun to question why I can't seem to stay anywhere. I can always justify my moves with adventure, love, travel, learning experience. But is that legit or am I just trying to rationalize my wanderlust?

Clearly I need some sleep!

20 July 2006

Technology breakdown...

I am having a serious breakdown. For the second time in the last three years, my iphoto library has deleted itself. Yes, deleted itself. And for the second time, the people at Apple Care have told me that they have never heard of such a thing happening and were no help what so ever.

It is times like this that I HATE technology.

I take a great deal of photos everyday, sometimes 100 or more. It is one of my things. I have taken at least one photo of my son every single day of his life.

Needless to say that my photos are VERY important to me. The first time this happened and Apple Care was no help, I went on line to see if anyone else out there had ever heard of this. I found no one. It seemed to be a one in a zillion thing, which is why I trusted iphoto to hold all of my photos again.
I try to keep only the best images in iphoto and file the rest. It makes iphoto move faster with fewer photos in it.
It can not be confirmed but I now believe that when my iphoto gets approximately 3600 photos in the library it empties itself. I don't know why, some kind of strange bug.

On the up side of this horror story, all of the photos are still in the dark depths of my hard drive filed with some strange coding that I can't figure out. Each photo is in it's own file with it's own title.

The first time it took me almost four months to dig through all of the files to restore iphoto to where I could copy it all to disks. I am hoping that I can get through it faster this time.

In addition, I will be looking for a new way to store and file my photos. Maybe I need a new computer.

You know my old 35mm Nikon, never crashed, lost or misplaced photos. I know where all of the photos are as well as the negatives.

Tell me again how technology is better.

Oh ya, I can do things like rant about loosing my digital photos on line, woooohoooo!

19 July 2006

Why "Mad William Vane"?

To make a short story long, I have been searching blogs for many months now, trying to find the allure I keep hearing about. As of this very moment there are roughly 10 million blogs on line, give or take. I have now looked at and tried reading roughly, a boat load of them. Most I have found to be quite stupid and rather profane for nothing more than just being a trash mouth. Grow up people. Every eight year old can use profanity. Yes I do myself curse from time to time. And after the birth of my son, Mr Man, for some unknown reason I cursed more my share, but that is another story.

I found by accident one day "Petite Anglaise".
while I was actually looking for property in France. I thought to myself, Self, Now this is a good blog,(and I am pleased to say that I found her before she became the blogging legend she is now, Wow!) I became very interested in the life of Petite and her daughter Tadpole, who have no idea I even exist.(Friends without the commitment) Just what I was looking for to begin with. But I digress. After reading the complete archives of Petite and catching up to her current entries I decided I should try some of the blogs she likes. As I found others I enjoyed and read what they enjoyed I have created my list of favorites. Blah Blah Blah. Anywho... I found "Harboring Delusions of Adequacy". One her site, in her things about her, is a link to "What's your Pirate name?". A short question and answer form that made me laugh out loud. When it spit out "Mad William Vane" I was in tears. I have no idea what the "Vane" part is about but I didn't realy care because I get told I am "Mad" more that most would think.

So, there you have it.

I blame(or credit) Petite for all of this.(the blogging thing) Someday I would like to meet her and Tadpole. Introduce myself, Mr. Man and Precious(my wife). Petite, if you are out there, We would love to take you and Tadpole to lunch next time we are in Paris, either this November or February, just to say thanks. (Or not, it's that whole commitment thing again.)

18 July 2006

Support for La Petite Anglaise....

I just read about one of my favorite bloggers being sacked because of her blog. Which was written anonymously by the way. This is just wrong! Even in France.
The title will link to many of the stories. I realize no one reads my blog, yet, but anyone who might should boycott her former company and show them that we will not take this kind of narrow minded behavior.

17 July 2006

A Poke in the Eye...

What is it about Art Galleries that make people think they can come in and ask one stupid question after another?
Do these people ask insulting moronic questions everywhere they go? Have they been living under a bridge like trolls?
Maybe I take art a little too personally. But I swear, the next person to come into my gallery and ask, "Is this a Jickly?", I am going to poke them in the eye and kick in the back side as I push them out the door!

First of all. If you have to ask whether everything you look at is a "Giclee" at least pronounce it right. It is (ZHEE-CLAY).
Second, if you have to ask, at least know what a Giclee is to begin with. If you do not know what it is and whether or not it is important, the answer is not going to matter because you STILL do not know what a Giclee is.

Is this the only term people know about art? Where did you all hear this term and why has no one explained it to you yet?

Let me help.
A Giclee is one type out of many, many, many types of digital print. Sometimes referred to as an "Iris" or "Ink-jet" print.
The term Giclee has become generic. When they are printed correctly they are fantastic works. When done incorrectly they are crap. This is true with every type of print. Lithograph, serigraph, etching, linocut, wood block, etc, etc, etc! They must be done correctly.
The terms themselves are meaningless if you do not know anything about them to begin with.

I know you are asking because you assume that any "print" is not worthy. You think this because you know nothing about art other than the word Giclee, which you equate with print which you equate with poster, mass produced, not worth anything.

You are WRONG!!!!

Printed works of art have been around forever, and I mean for as long as human beings have been creating works of art they have been making printed works in one way or another. (this next part is important so pay attention)

When created in "top quality" and in "limited editions" (quantity varies) they are VERY COLLECTIBLE and VERY VALUABLE!

Maybe you should read that again. Prints have value!

Alright, I feel better already. There are many other terms I have mentioned that I will no doubt have to explain to you, but not today. There are also many more Do's and Don'ts when it comes to art and art galleries which I will also explain, but not today.

Please people, for all concerned. You could be the one to get your eye poked and a kick in the butt, so think before you speak! Especially if you are along the Oregon coast visiting galleries.

15 July 2006

Peaceful thoughts....And a Penalty Box!

I was just emailed an essay by Dr Vernon Chong USAF retired, "This War is For Real". In the email they mentioned that they Googled him and found other thought provoking writings by Dr Chong and that he was real as well.

What I found when I Googled him myself were hundreds of other people all referring to this same, one essay. There was an "Official site of the USAF" which was not authorized by the USAF.
I found it all to be very Pro-WAR and very sad.

Why can't humans learn that violence NEVER solves anything! EVER!

Dr Vernon's point was that we unite in order to win the war on terror. On that he was correct. We do need to unite.
We need to unite in Peace. There will always be someone who hates others, for what ever reason, it doesn't matter. They want us to fight back and by doing so they win no matter what the outcome.

At this moment, the worlds troubles are coming from the Middle East. Not all the trouble but most. It is time for the world to give the Middle East a "Time Out".
Every country that wants to live in peace and have a free society should take their armed forces and use them to surround the Middle East. Create a "Penalty Box", and anyone who is unwilling to play nice with the rest of the world gets dumped in the Box.
And most importantly, NO ONE get out.
Political Correctness be dammed! If you can not live in a civilized society you should be removed and put together with all of the other Butt-Heads so you can all kill one another without messing with the rest of us.

Fighting with them only brings us down to their level. It is exactly what they want.

Stop the insanity...........PEACEFUL THOUGHTS............And a Penalty Box.

14 July 2006

Beyond my years....

It was 1972. My best friend, James and I were passing notes in class. As some notes are, we had one intercepted. Of course it had all sorts of personal information that was most embarrassing to all concerned. Mainly us and the young girls we were making fun of.( we were in the 4th grade, girls were still some what gross) It was then and there that we decided to create our own personal secret code. We each kept a note book with the master list(at home so no one could steal it and break our code).
We worked on it for months. A set of letters, numbers, symbols and phrases in which we could talk about absolutely anything and everything. We used it for years. Slowly updating and refining to the point we hardly ever had to refer to our notebooks.
It was all very geekish but we thought we were quite cool. Others tried to make their own codes but none had the vision or the determination to stick with like James and I.
As the years passed and girls became less gross and more Hubba Hubba we stopped using our code. Then James moved away and we eventually lost touch with each other. I lost the notebook and had for the most part forgotten about the code.
Until this week that is. I know now that we had developed html. The same mind numbing gibberish that we used to make fun of girls in now the master frame work of computers world wide.
As I sat this week trying to create my own blog and personalize it the way so many of you have with your own sites, thinking what bozo came up with all this crap?
I could have been that Bozo.
Now I get to learn a new code so my space can be just as cool as the ones that brought me to this place.
James, where ever you are, I hope you ended up at Google.
You Bozo.

11 July 2006

Being a parent............

When I was pre-child I used to wonder about parents and the things they would let there children do in public. My wife, Precious, and I would sit and whisper to one another "if we had a child they would never do that"....."why would they bring their child out in public if .........." blah, blah, blah,
Precious and I now have a 2 year old boy, Mr Man.

For all of you who have ever had or currently have children. I am sooooo sorry! Children are not something that anyone can explain to someone who doesn't. There is NO WAY anyone could convey what it takes to be a parent.

To all of you who are now like we were. I warn you now, never talk trash about other parents until you have been in their vomit covered clothes in the middle of a crowded restaurant.

Which is what brings me to this installment:
Tonight, Precious, Mr Man and I went to have a quick meal after a long day. Everything was wonderful through salads, polite conversation about the day and some people watching. Just as our meals arrived at the table Precious asks Mr Man if he is feeling alright. As he is sitting next to me I turn just in time to see his face go pale and projectile vomit all over the table, my leg, down his front..... I slid his high chair back as quickly as I could. Precious was now up from across the table to assist me. We are wiping things up and have just asked for more napkins, a towel, a bucket, what ever they have when we are hit with wave number two. Up it comes again. It was right out of Monty Python.

Precious has a thing for grossness anyway, but both of us handled it rather calmly and quickly. Mr Man was totally calm through the whole ordeal. I wrapped him in his blanket (he never goes any where with out it) and carried him through the restaurant out to the car. I always have a change of clothes for him. After tonight I will have a change for all of us.
I could see the looks as we walked out. It was clear who the parents were and who were not. I laughed to myself thinking about what my life has become.

By the time I had him cleaned up and changed we were laughing and having a good time again. All was right with the world.
And all in all........It was a pretty good day. Try to explain that to a non parent.

Here we go.......

This is my first post as a blogger. I have been reading several of them for the last month or so. I have found some very well written blogs that I am enjoying. So I thought I would share our lives with the rest of you. I hope you enjoy it.

We have recently relocated to the North West United States from Southern Cal.
I am finding the transition much more difficult than I had imagined. After all my wife and I grew up in small towns. After so many years in very large cities we both thought it would be a good thing to go back to a small town to raise our son. We found a great little town along the coast with what seemed to be a thriving art community with tourists from all over the world. A town of 1600 with 28 Art galleries and about 500,000 tourists a year. It should have been a perfect match.

It has only been a few months but already I am thinking that I have drug my family to the bizzaro pleasantville. Everyone is very nice and friendly which is a great change from So Cal. But they are also mind numbingly slow. No one is ever on time, if they show up at all. And none of them care.

As for the thriving business...... We were first told that the "Season" starts in May.
We opened our Gallery May 1st. Then we were told that the "Season" doesn't really start until June after schools are done. Then it was After July 4th the "Season" really takes off and the town will be over run for the next 6 months.
It is now July 11th and there is still plenty of parking for everyone. Do you really have a "Season" around here or does fifty extra people in town constitute "Over Run". So far all of the research we did on the town and area has been way off base. The only thing they were right about was that housing costs have gone crazy high.

We have been in the art world for almost 20 years each now, we know that it is very hit and miss. This is the first time we have been in an area that was less that a million in population. It is a very different world. I have never heard so many stupid questions in my life. And Just so you all know, Thomas Kinkade IS the anti-Christ!

You're right! It has only been a few months and I am just panicking a little. Having a child makes me do that. When life was just the two of us we could play fast and loose. Now I like to have things a little more under control. Fat chance of that, right?

Take a deep breath, count to a zillion, put on a smile and kindly answer for the 100th time today, "Is this a jickly?"

God help me! What have I done....................................