Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The State of the Art

I think that art work is a very personal thing. It's like porn, you know it when you see it, and what is art to you, may or may not be art to me. The works that speak most to me, tend to be those personal things, that bring me back to a certain place or time. I've been very lucky over the years to have some very talented friends, who have shared their talent with me.
When I lived in Baltimore, Bob Ray had his harem, and I was lucky enough to be in it! I think Bob still has the longest running streak on record, and he made his streak even harder by insisting on running a minimum of 5 miles per day. Bob ran in the rain, the snow, with a broken leg. Bob once delivered a baby on one of his runs! Bob also painted slate and I'm lucky enough to have one of his pieces in my house.
Herb Park was an up and coming wild life artist who had an outstanding Brittany bitch. Lucky for me, he fell in love with one of my top winning dogs, and not only gave me the pick of the litter between the two, he painted DD's portrait which now proudly hangs above the dresser in my bedroom. DD was a group winning show dog, had a hunting title, could snag a flying bird out of the air, and could completely make everyone fall in love with him. Having him die suddenly at age 9 was devistating. Having Herb's portrait be the first thing I see every morning brings my best buddy back to me on a daily basis.
The picture above is Fat Frogs flier, Glenda Craddock with Bobby and a portrait that she did for me. Glenda is the first cyclist artitst that I've met and I'll treasure this piece forever. I dont know how I've gotten so lucky to stumble on such talented people.
The latest piece that I have is an original comic by Jef Mallet. You know him as the creator of "Frazz." If you haven't been reading Frazz, you are missing out on some of the funniest stuff ever done about running, cycling, and tri stuff in general. He also writes the back column for Inside Triathalon, and is huge into community involvement. I got the work from a donation to one of his causes in Michigan, when he was going to do some crazy swim across the lake. (As in the BIG LAKE). Go to www.comics.com to see some of his work, or better yet, go to the book store and get a copy of his books. There is wildly funny stuff there.
I've been on the waiting list for two years to have Adelle Castillo do a portrait of Bobby and Petey, two of my rescue dogs. Petey, aka broken dog, was kicked to pieces and still has tons of pins in his rear holding his legs together. Adelle is a big supporter of BARK, one of the rescue organizations here, and where Petey came from. Part of her support is to make calendars every year with all the proceeds going to BARK. It gives me warm fuzzies to think that Petey can be the subject that brings in money to such a worthy cause.
And speaking of worthy causes... after reading BJ's post yesterday, I went on www.petfinder.com and started looking at the animal shelters on the peninsula. Now in Richmond, the euthanasia rate for adoptable dogs is 0. Yep, no adoptable dogs here were put down. This is a stellar achievement. Sadly, when I looked at Chesapeake, that is not the case there. They intake almost 6000 pets a year, and put down over half of them. I looked at the dogs in thier care. There are poms, chins, weiner dogs, labs, beagles, shepherds, poodles. There is even a dog that could be Petey's twin. If you are thinking about getting a dog, and are not interested in breeding or showing, call me. I'll help you find the right buddy. Dont rescue a dog to rescue a dog. Rescue a dog to have a friend for life.

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