Cannon Art Gallery's Invitational...

Whenever we're in Carlsbad, we try to visit the amazing art gallery located adjacent to the public library.

More than 500 artists have appeared in the Cannon Art Gallery. The current exhibit, the 2020 Invitational, presents work from local artists Sue DeWulf, Juan Flores, Alison Haley Paul, Annalise Neil and Vicki Walsh. Oh man, I love this creative space.

I think the most unique of the five artists showcased was Vicki Walsh, whose work is described by Chi Essary as, "Forensic Illustration Meets the Renaissance."  Ms. Walsh’s stark and meticulously rendered faces are sure to leave an impression. Each accident of the flesh is painstakingly depicted. Although the likeness is exact, her work is something beyond portraiture. Her subject may be the face, but more the topography of the face—she is almost mapping each contour and crease.
As far as the painters go, Juan Flores gets my vote as the most whimsical. His work evokes glee.
According to the artist's bio, "My newer works synthesize and illustrate a vision rooted in my past. I use intense colors to make vanishing memories vivid images and recapture a fading dream or a distant event." I like that concept a great deal.
Steve was drawn to this piece by Alison Haley Paul, a contemporary painter of lavishly textured landscapes full of nuanced color. Her work conjures up connotations and geographical memories. The places she paints may not be physically specific, but they are immediately recognizable. All of her works were visually stunning.
I can appreciate painting but I'm a sucker for ceramics! Sue DeWulf's ceramics have been described as, "An Unparalleled Whimsical Art Collection". I couldn't agree more. She had the largest collection in the gallery and I loved them all.
Assemblage pieces are created from cast found objects, hand built accents and vintage ceramic molds. Childhood images such as rubber ducks, piggy banks, carousel animals and baby dolls come together to involve the viewer in the artist's affinity for toys and a love of play. Maybe that's why I appreciate her stuff so much. I totally have a love of play.

The William D. Cannon Art Gallery is one of those places that draws us in. I always leave thoroughly impressed. It is truly one of Carlsbad's greatest treasures. I am so happy we discovered it.

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My Broken Neck Follow Up #5...

It has been five months since that fateful day when I fractured my neck. Today was yet another follow up.

Each appointment is always a bit of a surprise for me. I have expectations and they are never quite met, though I always leave hopeful. I'm glad Steve goes with me because he takes away different information than I do.
At all five appointments with my orthopedist, I have x-rays taken. These images do not show if the C1 vertebrae is healed. What they tell Dr. Z is that the broken bone has not shifted in relation to the C2 (which has been the danger all along). He is happy that I'm vertical & ventilating without pain. Furthermore, he is confident that one more month in my neck brace, along with the bone stimulator, will be enough for me to transition into a soft collar. Physical Therapy will begin after some time in the new apparatus.
What does this all mean? At the end of February, I will be rocking one of these fine neck accessories. It also means that while I am healing, I fractured my vertebrae so severely that it may never fully heal. Life is, and may always be, comprised (with pain and fragility). Dr. Z is very forthcoming with those possibilities. On the other hand, who knows. I may beat the odds and live a pre-fall life of exhaustingly happy memories. That's the option on which I'm going to focus. Broken Neck Follow Up #6 occurs in mid-March. Until then, I'm choosing not to dwell on the what ifs but the heck yas!

"Broken crayons still color the same."
-Trent Shelton

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The Museum of Western Film History...

As far as I'm concerned, no stop in Lone Pine is complete without a mesmerizing visit to The Museum of Western Film History.

This amazing space honors the men and women of the silver screen who interpreted the lives of the American Cowboy; the legendary iconic movie and TV heroes and heroines of America’s 19th and 20th centuries.
In addition, the museum collects and shares more contemporary movie making in the regional area of Inyo County, such as sci-fi genres and other cinematic references to the local landscape.
Hollywood first came on location in Lone Pine in 1920, using the unique scenery in more than 400 feature films since. Actually the Alabama Hills, the Sierra Nevada and the Owens Valley are still being used in movies and car commercials. Most recently, scenes for the Academy Award-winning Gladiator, Disney's Dinosaur, G.I. Jane, Maverick and The Shadow were shot in the Alabama Hills. The natural scenery remains unspoiled and unchanged since that first film in 1920, a silent Western for Paramount called The Round Up with Fatty Arbuckle.
Part of what makes this museum so interesting to me is the technology of filming making it shares. For instance, Technicolor. Wow. The introduction of Technicolor’s three-color camera in 1932 represented a major advancement in motion picture technology. The camera required an entirely new design, although it utilized many of the same principles already developed for two-color photography, such as a beam-splitting prism. The camera captured crisp, vibrant colors that were then recombined in printing.

The Technicolor three-strip camera captured separate color records onto three strips of film. Light entered the camera through the lens and was divided by the beam-splitting prism into two paths. One strip of film recorded the green record onto black-and-white film, while the other two records were exposed onto two black-and-white film strips in “bipack” (sandwiched together); the front film was blue-sensitive only, while the back film was sensitive to red. I said it was 'interesting'. I didn't say I understand it.

This piece of my childhood evoked incredible memories. I, to this day, still wax nostalgic for the drive-in movies.
The museum guides you through the decades of cinema magic.
Its collection of memorabilia is beyond impressive. 



Thirty years ago, the movie Tremors was filmed here. The museum just hosted an anniversary celebration for this 1990 American monster comedy film.
It starred Kevin Bacon, Fred Ward, Finn Carter, Michael Gross, and Reba McEntire. It was a success spawning five films over the years.

In the film, tired of their dull lives in the small desert town of Perfection, Nevada, repairmen Val McKee (Bacon) and Earl Bassett (Ward) try to skip town. However, they happen upon a series of mysterious deaths and a concerned seismologist Rhonda (Carter) studying unnatural readings below the ground. With the help of an eccentric couple Burt and Heather Gummer (Gross and McEntire), the group fights for survival against giant, worm-like monsters hungry for human flesh. Gripping! It's on our 'watch list' on Netflix currently.

Director Quentin Tarantino was here in 2012 to film his Oscar winning film Django Unchained.
Turns out Mr. Tarantino loved this museum and Lone Pine so much he donated a number of artifacts from the movie and has returned on numerous occasions. Wow.
This museum, in the little town of Lone Pine (pop. 2,035), offers so much to cinephiles. If you blink, while passing by, you could miss it. Don't!

"Let me just pause a minute and drink in this moment.
And if you film it, I’ll be able to get free refills for life."
-Jarod Kintz

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Scenes from 395...

The Eastern Sierra possesses some of my most favorite scenery, making the 473 mile drive fly by.

We broke up the drive into two days with an overnight in the town of Lone Pine.
The locale made for a spectacular sunrise.







“What it takes to realize everything is fine around you?
A road trip to the mountains where your soul dwells
in the echoes of the winds that carry fragments of clouds with them.
What it takes to realize the world is going back to chaos and infinite hurry?
End of the aforementioned road trip.”
–Crestless Wave

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Grub Stop at Sharkey's Casino...

As we migrated south on 395, we made a breakfast connection with our friends, Steve and Laura. One of our favorite diners is in the historic town of Gardnerville, Nevada.

Early Gardnerville served the farming community and teamsters hauling local produce to booming Bodie. The first buildings were a blacksmith shop, a saloon and the Gardnerville Hotel. Starting in 1898, Spanish and French Basque shepherds tended thousands of heads of sheep in Carson Valley. After 1918, several Basques opened inns and restaurants which flourished during the Prohibition years (Basque restaurants are still here- next time!).
We chose to dine at what began as The Corner Saloon, constructed on this site in the late 1890s.
Eventually it became known as the Golden Bubble until it was purchased by Mr. Sharkey Begovich in 1972. Mr. Begovich (1926-2002) was an icon of the gaming industry and a large part of Nevada gaming history. He owned and operated this iconic spot, Sharkey's Casino, for thirty years until his death in 2002. Did I mention how I love to dine in history?
Not only was the spot ideally situated, it has really great food, fabulous prices and a cool vibe. I fueled up on Sharkey's Special: Pancakes, two eggs and two sausages for a whopping $4.99. Oh and a bottomless cup of strong coffee costs only $1. Yes, delicious and a deal.

What fun to do our final friend connect here in Gardnerville with Steve and Laura. On to the next stop along the way.
"You can’t buy happiness, but you can buy good food."

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Last Night in Tahoe...

The only place I was allowed to venture to was Bob and Jenny's lovely lakeside home. We had the best welcoming. As we drove down their street the most beautiful bald eagle swooped down in front of our truck. We stopped instantly while he circled around and swooped even closer. Such a Tahoe image. Wow.

Unfortunately, the only image taken of the four of us is this very blurred one. It is what it is and since it evokes wonderful memories, here it is!
Delicious food, competitive dice playing, lots of catch up, bird ogling and lots of just fun friend time... It was the ideal conclusion to our brief Tahoe sojourn.
“Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die,
life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly.”
-Langston Hughes

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Fabulous Friends: NorCal Edition

One of the main reasons for returning to South Lake Tahoe, on this current roadtrip, was to reconnect with friends. What a soul nourishing endeavor!

Jan and Chris came with delicious pumpkin bread and big hugs.
 Sue arrived with enviable travel tales, stew and additional big hugs.
Janet shared encouraging words, muffins and gifted the amazing bottle in my hand. Oh and more big hugs.
Author Kim shared a sneak peek of her recently finished novel, news of her life and needed big hugs.
Paula and Diana stayed for tea and filled us in on all the goings on in South Lake Tahoe. They also got us excited for what's coming this summer. Again hugs all around.
Casey arrived with a cough and instead of canceling, we dined on the front porch. Now this felt like home. More hugs ensued. It is the friends that make a place home. Boy do we have exceptional friends.

"The ornament of a house is the friends who frequent it."
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

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