This month I completed the third mural on the exterior of the Goodwill building in Sunnyvale. The final panel is a midcentury aerial view. It features the USS Macon, a “flying aircraft carrier” that was built in 1933 for the US Navy. Even though it sank into the Pacific Ocean in 1935, just two years after being built, it was an iconic piece of Sunnyvale history. I felt like a bird in the sky while painting this.
Remember the nonagenerian who enlightened me that watering trucks were only used on roads, not crops? He was right! I came back and repainted a road through the wheat field, so that the mural would be accurate. I learn something new every day!
That Doesn’t Look Like a Train
When I am out painting in public, people say the darndest things. I had one guy who would come by every day to enlighten me on all the things I was doing badly. Charming fellow. I put down the base coat for the train and he was up in arms: “That doesn’t look like a train! That just looks like a black blob! Is that supposed to be a train?” He mellowed out, and actually bordered on approval by the end of the project.
My dear friends Eske and Camilla have been regaling me with stories of the beautiful views they see on their long bike rides “over the hill”. They bike up hills that make me tired just driving over them, and then they bike back again. So when twe planned a field trip to look at views for the mini series they comissioned, I decided we should drive. We left at 6 am with Eske’s home made, freshly baked sourdough rolls filling the van. (I hate to ask what time he had to get up!) We toured a few of the most beautiful vistas I have seen in the area, all new to me. I was so inspired I created three paintings from our morning together.
Lobitas Creek View, 4′ x 6′ Acrylic on canvas
The Morning Climb, Tunitas, 3′ x 5′ Acrylic on canvas
Cabrillo Highway, 3′ x 5′ Acrylic on canvas
Eske and Camilla are going to be taking two of the paintings back to Denmark with them in June. They decided they don’t have room in their suitcase for all of three paintings, so Cabrillo Highway (above), is available for purchase! Please let me know if you are interested.
Lord, grant that I may always desire more than I can accomplish.
To achieve great things, two things are needed: A plan, and not quite enough time.
ON MY BOOKSHELF
The Rise: Creativity, the Gift of Failure, and the Search for Mastery by Sarah Lewis.
While intellectually I can understand the virtue of failure, the book did nothing to alleviate my gut fear of it.
“Masters are not experts because they take a subject to its conceptual end. They are masters because they realize that there isn’t one. On utterly smooth ground, the path from aim to attainment is in the permanent future.”
The book is full of lofty, lovely paragraphs like this. Read it just for the writing.
David and Goliath by Malcolm Gladwell
Another book which intellectually makes sense but doesn’t make me want to invite any disadvantages into my life.
Malcolm Gladwell is always fun to read, and the book is chock full of interesting examples and angles to make his point. The book includes many inspiring underdog stories, people and groups who have alchemized their tragedy into their greatest success. The stories we weave in the rear view mirror all seem like such neat and tidy packages…
LAUGH WITH LUCAS
My son, Lucas, likes to make up his own jokes. His tidbit today:
Do you know why they came up with the name parent?
Because their job is to pay-rent.
Ah, the world from the eyes of a 12 year old.
ONE FOR THE ROAD
Success is going from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.
Morgan Bricca is a mural artist living and working in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her clients run the gamut from professional creatives, including architects and designers to building owners, school administrators and community advocates. When she is not making art, Morgan enjoys sipping boba tea with her kids and taking naps on the couch.