Artist’s Journal: NUMBER 79

An American Abstract Painter in Portugal…


Bilbo said, “It’s a dangerous business,

Frodo, going out your door.

You step onto the road, and if you

don’t keep your feet, there’s no

knowing where you might

be swept off to.”

JRR Tolkien

What does that mean? I am an abstract painter from the United States who has been swept off to the Iberian Peninsula. Its not a statement, it’s a description. It’s now been 2-months and 20-days. I live on the Silver Coast (Costa de Prata) of the Portuguese mainland in the village of Praia de Buarcos in the city of Figueira da Foz.

LV #4 – 2016

Life here is very pleasant. And simple enough as most things are here. The summer was beautiful. We’re slipping into autumn as the sun retires earlier and there’s a slight nip to the air.

It’s already rained here more times than it has all summer and the count is still in single digits. I must admit, I was expecting some serious changes in my work just by virtue of living here.

Maybe there have been some changes, but I haven’t noticed them. I haven’t been swept off my feet. Well, in a very unexpected way I have been!

As with anywhere on Earth, making a living as a Painter is difficult. The only difference is, that here, Art and artists seem to have a lot more respect. 

I guess I unknowingly followed Steve Jobs advice, “Your time is limited,” he said, “so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” 

I followed my heart and my intuition and I don’t regret it. This week I was at the CAE – Centro de Artes e Espectaculos (Center for the Arts and Performances) in Figueira and saw this tag: If you can, don’t wait. se-puderes

For the first time in my life, when people ask me what I do or what I am, I say, “I’m a painter.”

It feels so good to say that. I’ve waited forty-years to say that. And, my heart and intuition are in the right place and on the right track. 

Posted on: 27/09/2016, by :
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