Flat Island or Die
January, 2004
Acrylic, 11"x14"

This painting was inspired by a few sea kayaking experiances and a few pictures I took... "hey, I'm half a mile offshore and theres a thunderstorm overhead... I think I'll dig out the camera and get a picture of the last moments of my life". there's some pictures in the kayaking pages of this site that were taken on overcast or stormy days on the ocean and they are a bit strange looking... the ocean and sky are both the same depressing gray, only thing with any color in those pics is the tip of my red kayak... anyways, this is like a collective exageration of several times when I was sure I would die alone on the ocean. I decided to name it 'Flat Island or Die' in rememberance of my first such experiance a few years ago...

for a while I was trying to draw stainedglass patterns of ocean scenes but never got far.. so it was fairly natural for me to try the same thing with paint, but it was still hard for me to come up with a design I liked. in a kayak you're closer to the ocean than in any other kind of boat and the ways that the ocean moves is something that all your senses sort of focus on. sometimes the ocean is really calm and does not seem to move much at all, other times it turns into a weird landscape of constantly shifting hills and valleys. one second you'll be sitting ontop of a swell and be able to see out over all the waves and everything, than a second later you'll be down in the valley between the swells and the horizon is suddenly about ten feet away... and depending on the hight of the waves and distance between them, sometimes half of the kayak will seem to be under water as a wave washes over, other half out of the water and sticking out the other side of the wave.. or not supported by water in the middle because the top of a four foot wave is currently at either end... anyways, this was the best I could do at showing all that sort of stuff.