I’m a writer and a painter by trade, and though I’m often just making it up off the top of my head for fun and profit, working from the things I see around me is a much needed grounding experience. It’s the pleasurable study of the present – which I sometimes forget to enjoy. It keeps my feet on solid earth when I’ve had too much time kicking around the backcountry of my own head, and it keeps motivation and inspiration continually flowing. Without the inspiration that comes with travel, I stagnate terribly.
Working from the inspiration I pick up on the road feels as though it gives my memory extra layers, and lets me spend a little more time with my best hours before they go back on the shelf.
If I could have my way right now, I’d happily throw my painting gear in the back of an air-stream or some other kind of humble caravan and roam about the pacific northwest, picking up stories to write and landscapes to paint. I’d publish this stuff immediately for the world to see as I make it, then pick up stakes and find some other horizon to chase.
That sounds like the dream, right there. Wander by day, write and paint by night.
For now, I’ll have to satisfy my thirst for travel by combing through my back-catalogue and producing works based on previous adventures. I’ll have to get out there again soon, because believe me, the roads are calling me like sirens. I’ve been in one place for far too long – longer than any other time before – and it’s honestly starting to kill me.
My plan is to be some wandering amalgam of George Bellows and Ernest Hemingway – recording every day scenery in the cities, the hills, and on the sea as words and pictures both. That’s the plan anyway. Until then, I’ve got to suffer with this intolerable wanderlust until I’m back on my feet again.
The road ahead waits.