Bird of SF #4 CAUGHT!

Daylight savings time ruined my plan to go horseback riding with my partner this Sunday morning. I had been looking forward to it all week, but, we overslept and missed our window of opportunity.  I found myself brooding in a mood of disappointment rather than embracing the gorgeous, sun filled day bestowed on us. I was ready to be content scouring the internet in my cavernous room for distracted amusement.

I pulled up Facebook and the first post I read was from my friend and a favorite SF artist, Josh Coffy, announcing that he had placed Bird print #4, from his Gift Prolific Project, out in public to be found.  The only clue was a photo of it in front of a sculpture of a young colt and the San Jose street sign behind it.

Ironically, the horse is the most epic creature to grace the earth as far as I am concerned.  I am magnetically drawn to all of them…especially when they are found in the City of SF that I rarely am outside of. However, I only recently came to take note of this beautiful little colt sculpture a few days ago on my way to work at Secession Art & Design.   I have lived and worked in and around this same neighborhood for quite a while so believe the Colt is a somewhat new addition.  OR, I saw it just when I did so I could later find this bird print!

Anyways, I readily identified the Colt in the FB post and without a moment’s hesitation sprang into action to make a mad dash for it.  I jumped out of my reclining state of laziness, grabbed my keys and ran out my front door. I had about a 10 block jaunt of off/on sprinting mixed with speed walking in the glorious Ozone affected Springtime heat before I came upon the Parklet. I spotted the little horse but feared I was beat to the punch in staking ownership of the print. Then, with great elation, I saw the bird singing from a Parklet bench waiting patiently to be claimed. I felt like I had just gone on a treasure hunt and struck gold!  All feelings of previous disappointment were erased by those of random fortuitousness.

Thank you, Josh, and your enormous generous heart. I think this is an incredibly worthwhile and engaging project. While I am lucky to know and call you my friend, I can’t help but be excited for all those “strangers” out there that are going to stumble upon other Gift Prolific birds you and your family place all over our City every week this year, and the impact and domino effect your generosity will inevitably spread throughout the community.  I promise, in my way, to pay it forward.

download

Thank you SO MUCH to Dianne Hoffman for the letter and the fabulous picture!  Please check out Dianne’s Amazing artwork.  We are working together on a show together that will take place in June at Secession Art and Design!

Posted in Daily Painting | Leave a comment

Tiny But Mighty Parklet (Birds of SF #4)

It is a beautiful day out there today.  No clouds in the sky just a huge blue mass shining down on my city.  I can feel the warmth of the sun down in my bones.  It’s a perfect day to drop the next bird.  So I load up my bag with the print, my camera, and phone and get the family in the van.  We head towards Noe Valley to meet up with Maureen who is gifting me a really cool Fox skull.  Thanks I always need skulls for my collection!  After we meet we decide we wanna stay close to home today for the drop and jet back to the house.  Then the idea pops into Theresa’s brain that we should place today’s print in one of the coolest parklets in the city.

A few years ago some amazing people got together to transform some empty concrete spaces into very tiny parks.  They would install benches, plants, and artsy fences to create wonderful public spaces for people to hang out and enjoy together.  I really like that people found a way to lean towards more connection with each other.  The parklet we are at now is called Guerrero Park and it was once literally just some concrete.  Now it is a small park with several wood benches and enormous felled trees that create a fence.  This past winter people upgraded much of the plant life in the parklet and it looks so lush and wonderful.  We place the bird near a nice tiny horse statue.  I take pictures.  Darwin rides on the horse for a bit.  Then we head out, back to the cool house to laze about for the day.

Today’s bird piece is a Black Pheobe.  This is one of the first birds I ever identified as a bird watcher.  And today’s parklet is near Noe Valley where we first lived in San Francisco.  It is amazing how far things have come since then.  Have a great day.  Take care.

IMG_0226 BoSF_04_fb

Dianne Hoffman has informed me that she grabbed this print almost right after we placed it!  She will send me a  note about it soon!  Congratulations Dianne!

Posted in Daily Painting | 1 Comment

Sunnyside Landmark…(Birds of SF #3)

I have been up since 6am this morning.  Early mornings are not all that unusual for me.  I wouldn’t normally note this except that ever since I woke up I have been thinking about where to place today’s bird print.  I kind of wanna stay in my neighborhood as I will be at my studio most of the day.  And then it hits me!  The Sunnyside Conservatory would be a great place to leave one.  The Conservatory is on Monterey Blvd. and is kind of a hidden landmark in the city.  The building itself dates back to 1901.  It was once a Conservatory of flowers much like the more famous one in Golden Gate Park.  Owners of the conservatory have included a balloon aircraft inventor who was killed by a locomotive; a woman named “Temperance” who named the conservatory “Sunnyside Laboratories” and planned to turn it into a sanitarium; and an entrepreneur who marketed bottled water fortified with mineral supplements in the 1920s.   In 1975 the building was mistakenly marked for demolition and was almost completely destroyed!  (oopsies!)  When we moved to San Francisco we found it by geocaching.  The older building was in disarray and in need of many repairs.  A few years ago the people of Sunnyside got the necessary donations and signatures together to get it rebuilt.  The new building is a thing of beauty!  Many of the plants and gardens have been on the spot for over a hundred years.  Now they host weddings and jazz concerts there.  Its a really nice place to walk to in my neighborhood and a perfect place to land a bird.

Today’s bird print was created on Friday night at a live painting gig that I had.  I didn’t quite finish it on Friday so yesterday I added a few things.  This is Bullock’s Oriole.  I chose to paint him mostly based on his colors and striking plumage.  They fly through San Francisco in the Summer.  There isn’t really much to illustrate my city in this one, sorry.  Just know that this little guy is a seasonal resident….maybe even here at the Conservatory.  Have a great day.  I hope someone enjoys this little guy and sends a picture to share where they placed it in their home….That’s half the fun of this project.  Take care.

BoSF_03_fb   birdinsf3

Posted in Daily Painting | 1 Comment

Stand Tall (Birds of SF #002)

It is a gorgeous day in the city today.  Darwin and I are headed out to drop off Bird #2.  Something about this one is telling me to go to Crissy Field.  I think it’s because I have seen a few Blue Herons up there eating out of the puddles and small bodies of water.  When we get there, we find TONS of people near the Warming Hut.  Cool.  We look around at a few places to drop it…Finally I decide that building a rock cairn for it seems like the best idea – EVER.  Darwin helps.  We laugh and play in the rocks a bit.  Then I set up the print and take pictures.  Just before we leave we buy 2 boxes of cookies from some nearby Girl Scouts….and talk to the girl’s mother.  I blurt out the premise of the project and we start to make our escape.  As we roll out, I look back to see the Girl Scouts and their mom walk over to check out the print.  Maybe it landed in their home.  I hope they email a picture.  Thanks for reading along.  Take care.

bosf2_place  BoSF_02_fb

Posted in Daily Painting | 1 Comment

Undersong.com Redesign….

Many Gift Prolific followers ask me where they can buy prints of my artwork.  The answer is my art site at www.undersong.com.  I recently redesigned the site and am really proud of it.  I would love it if you would take a look.  The newest prints of the ‘Birds of San Francisco’ series will all be for sale on that site as well.  Thanks!  Hope you are all having a wonderful day.

screenshot

Posted in Daily Painting | 1 Comment

Take Off (BofSF #001)

This is the official launch of the new project.

The first bird in the series is an Anna’s Hummingbird.  These little fast paced birds are all over city.  Rushing to and from, they sometimes go unnoticed.  Kind of like commuters.  In this painting I included a Muni bus transfer from my birthday.  I kind of love Muni and I kind of hate it too.  I suppose lots of people feel that way about the bus system here.

I wanted to leave the first one in a really good place.  And in my head I had many arguments for several locations in the city.  The Castro won out when I got on the bus to go place the print.  In my head I was going to take the picture of the painting in front of the rainbow flag but when I got to the Castro this spot seemed to fit perfectly.  This is a very busy part of town.  Some of my favorite shops are right here….Cliffs Variety Store, Local Take, Hot Cookie…etc.  This is right on front of Twin Peaks bar and the World famous Castro Theater.  Many people call this Gay Mecca.  I have always enjoyed the Castro.  So here we go.  Taking flight!

web001   bird1

BofSF #001 – Landed

I just got a call from Olga Stromberg. She lives in the Castro and a friend of hers gifted the bird print to her yesterday. She was very excited as she loves birds. I was very excited to hear that someone got the print and really enjoys it. Thank you Olga! Take care!

Posted in Daily Painting | 2 Comments

Birds of San Francisco begins…

birdsofsfAs most of you know I love to paint birds.  I also love San Francisco.  Birds are a diverse bunch.  They come in all shapes and sizes and each bird has something so special about it.  Much like the citizens of my fair city.  So I have been thinking about a new project….

This week I turned 39 years old.  It’s not shocking or anything.  But I want to do something fun and cool and maybe you would be interested in following along.  Each month I am going to paint 1 to 4 little bird paintings that reference San Francisco.  These birds will most likely be residence of the city by the bay.  Then I am going to make a wood mounted print of that painting.  And here is where it gets fun….

I am going to take that print and place it somewhere in San Francisco!  It could be a park bench, a bus stop, a BART Train, coffee shops….wherever I want to show off my city.  I will post a picture of the print on its perch on the project’s facebook page and my instagram and this blog.  Good luck!  I hope you get one of the many prints that I will let fly in the city.

My hope is that people will read the attached note and participate in the project.  I am hoping people will post pics and send me an email telling me what they did with the print.  Did they gift it?  Did they keep it?  Is it in their home?  Office? etc.

At the end of the year, for my 40th birthday, I hope to stage an art show with all of the original paintings of the Birds of San Francisco.

Prints and wood mounted prints will be made available on my site at Undersong.com

THANK YOU for playing along.  I will be placing my first bird print tomorrow sometime.  Take care!!!  and good luck.

Posted in Daily Painting | Leave a comment