Is That You in the Painting?

Lately, I’ve been getting the same question over and over again.  Is that you in the painting.  Although I’m not painting myself, I am painting someone who represents the idealized version of surfing.  Hopefully, you can feel the isolation and peace under the water while viewing the duck diving surfer girls.  It’s a quick moment while in the water but a painting or a photograph can make it last forever.

I have been fortunate enough to be given permission by two very talented photographers to paint these young women.  When I’m under a wave, all I see is water and bubbles.  I feel the power of the wave over my head pulling me  back up to the surface.  Duck diving as seen in the pictures is a skill that must be learned.  

Original Photograph by Rick Briggs used with permission.

It’s usually done on a short board by pushing the board into the water with your arms and then pulling your knee up to help push it down.  Then, as you are pulled forward you will naturally float to the surface of the water.  My paintings are meant to portray power, strength and beauty.  

If you’ve never learned to surf, I must tell you.  It’s many weekends, swallowing salt water, and getting your sinuses cleaned out.  There’s falling and getting knocked around by the waves.  If you wear a bikini there’s a very good chance you’ll lose your top or bottoms eventually.  I’ve even been hit on the back of the head by my surfboard fin and lived to tell the story.  There will be cuts and scrapes, jelly fish stings and just plain bad days.  

All we need is one day…that one perfect day with awesome waves and you get it.  You get surf stoked.  Then you realize, the ocean has you for life.