Thursday, January 2, 2014

Can't Do Without It

Sitting here in the studio having my hot tea, got Widespread Panic in my ear, and was just noticing my dirty ol' backpack sitting on the floor. Dutifully awaiting it's next assignment, whether it's packed to the gills with painting supplies or cheese, crackers, and beer...or extra clothes for the kids...or, Well, you get the idea.

I have other packs, but this one seems to be the go to guy. Has yet to fumble after over 11 years of service.

Yes, see, this pack has special significance to me because I purchased it at Wild Iris Mountain Sports in Lander, WY. during my time living there in 2002-03. If you are a friend of mine or know me at all, I have a love affair with that town.

I needed a pack smaller than my full on backpacking pack to use on day hikes up in Sinks Canyon and around Lander to carry my watercolors and other supplies. At the time I was just a budding artist, if that, and getting out in the great outdoors of the American west, particularly Wyoming, had been a dream of mine for a long time. So, maybe you can imagine why that period sticks with me so.

Today, I use this pack for all of my plein air outings and now it sees more oil paint than anything else, which is beginning to leave an archive of color marks all over it. It also serves as my grocery bag when I ride my bike to the store. Dang, it's almost to me like the little blue blanket is to Linus from the Peanut comics.

So, when I think of what is probably the most necessary piece of equipment I use, my paints, or brushes, or solvents, or canvas, or even my easel may seem to be it. But, without this pack to get those things out of the studio and into the outdoors where I love to paint, then it sure would be a cumbersome attempt at doing anything but painting in the studio.

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