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Photos and paintings done in Laguna del Sol, Cuenca, Ecuador, 2019. I had made some attempts to further my art, paintings and sculpture with a few exhibits in NYC. I soon realized it was a difficult field to break into. There we're 9,000 artists in NYC at that time. Showing work on computer which only started long after my graduation in 1959, was not an option. Traveling, actually seeing the. world, began to be a way of life for me. After graduating the H. S, of Music and Art, and the Cooper Union for the Advancement of science and Art, a college started by the first governor Peter Cooper in New York City, I decided to explore America. My first job in NY was painting designs on porcelain bathroom fixtures. It was in a basement of a building. Instead of thinking through my situation, and connecting with family or friends to discuss how to leave this paid job, I lfelt un prepared for the real world. This was the start of a life where I felt forced to think on my own for the first time. I left NYC in 1961 less than a year from Cooper. Looking back I realize I would have gained much real world art experience had I visited the Artists Studio of Design and learned how to perfect realistic painting in a way where I could attract better jobs. Instead I set out on my own with a friend, always. sketching and enjoying natural scenery, across America. We hitchhiked across the North Eastern US to Sioux City, Iowa. A friend and I cooked up the idea to take a Missouri River trip on a round U.S. Air Force round yellow rubber raft. Adventure was my interest. We traveled from the river trip to Kansas City where I worked in a steak restaurant for a season. During that time I sketched fields and K.C. rivers and lakes. I read adventure books in the K.C. library, and hoped to see the lands I was reading about, Mt. Everest in the Himalayas, the search for India through the Arctic from English adventurers from England in 1850. We drove back to New York in a purchased old Ford car, and worked for a year in an ice cream parlor. Then we set iout to take a kayak trip on the Yukon River, in Yukon, Canada. After living in a log cabin owned by two trappers, I moved into the capital, Whitehorse, and worked as a typist. on a news paper. I answered an ad to enter a contest for a mural in the new Whitehorse City Hall. By this time I understood a lot about the history of the northwest. I won the contest with my theme history of the Klondike. I designed and executed the City Hall Mural in Whitehorse, 1967, with a local cabinet maker. We built it all in layered plywood veneer. It was the Canadian bi-ccentennial. My prize was $5,000. I then moved to San Francisco in 1969. I gained prominence in teaching with help from Bob Blackburn, my former graphics teacher from Cooper Union. I taught art to adults in Community College with a California credential. During the following years, I moved to Connecticut, then Tucson, Arizona where I wanted to meet native Americans, see the reservations, read about our tragic history of how we treated people who had so much to offer, but who we down sided, short sighted, and messed up the legacies of people from this native land, and from Africa who we made into slaves. Eventually I moved from Tucson where I practiced a lot of out door landscape paintings, and moved back to California. There I connected with a landscape group, the. O.A.K. and made friends with painters Michael Drury and Ray Strong. I did design and paint several murals in the Bay Area, Ventura, Santa Barbara. Feeling the need to be on the go again, I arrived in Ecuador, S.A., at the advice of a friend, potentially to experience life in the Andes Mountains. I'm eager to explore and paint more of Cuenca, the city and the larger environment which is 7,000 ft elevation, surrounded by mountains, foothills to the volcanos.
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