Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Goodbye to a friend.

As some folks may know, Holly and I recently moved. For the past month or so we have been living in a home in Pipersville, PA. In that time we had the chance to get to know the property owners, the Hobsons, fairly well. They have been constantly around taking care of the massive property, mowing and gardening seemingly non stop.

I had the chance to sit with them a week or two ago while they fed the deer in the back yard. They casually mentioned, that day was their 53rd wedding anniversary. They went on to explain that they both worked their asses off for most of their lives just so they could enjoy moments like that one. Arnold had explained a bit more how the property has been in their family for generations, and how he had cut wheat in the upper field with a scythe when he was younger. Ann has amazed us by mowing what i believe is around 15-20 acres with their john deer riding mower. It takes several days each week to keep it just how they want. When I asked why they put so much time into the property, Arnold explained they had done so for 50 years, why stop now. While she mows, he works to keep up his lumber milling routine. Another labor of love that you can see he takes great pride in.

The home we are living in was built by hand by Ann's father and the care and craftsmanship shows in every room. We are truly blessed or lucky or whatever you want to say to have had the chance to be here for even the short time we have. Even more effecting is the time we have been able to have with Arnold and Ann. In the short time we have lived here they have really held a place in our hearts. Ann has kept a garden across from our home, and has surprised us with bounty from it a few times already. It has been like living next door to our grandparents.

Today we got the news that Ann passed away suddenly from a form of leukemia. She was admitted on saturday, and passed on Monday. A shock to everyone.

We miss her after little more than a month of knowing her. My heart is crushed to think how her high school sweetheart and husband of so many years will cope with her loss.

Generations of wisdom and life experience are vanishing every day. If you have the opportunity to spend time with folks from past generations and you pass it up, you are a fool.

Rest well Mrs. Hobson. You will be missed.

Location:Hollow Horn Rd,Pipersville,United States

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Mercury Tattoo Studio Doylestown...19 Donaldson St. Doylestown, PA 18901

It has been a long time since I’ve made any sort of substantial update on the ole’ blog. Largely it has been due to just being so absurdly busy. Both on the work front, and the home front. Holly and I have been in our new home for a month now. The new place is amazing! I'm writing this on our patio surrounded by trees, stars, frogs, and the sounds of 4th of July celebrations way off in the distance. Daily there are deer, turkey, turtles, foxes and countless other critters that share this quiet property in the hills of Pipersville, PA.

The largest and most important thing going on that would matter to anyone reading this, is finally being comfortable announcing the shop is moving! More accurately, we are opening a new shop while keeping the Glenside shop open under the new ownership of Drew Rash and Brian Patton. If all goes well, these changes should be happening in about a month. I am figuring on a late July/ early August opening time in Doylestown. The new shop will be under the name Mercury Tattoo Studio, Doylestown. While the original shop will keep the original name of Mercury Tattoo Studio, but adding “Glenside” to the name for clarification.

I am so damn excited to get this new shop up and running it is killing me. It has been in the works for several months, and for most of that time I haven’t felt comfortable making a formal announcement because there was always something hovering to keep the move from being 100%. I feel comfortable at this point as we have finally reached the point of starting renovations, and hanging the “coming soon” banners on the storefront.

The space itself is really well suited to what I was looking for. It was a dentist’s office for many years and has jumped from business to business for the past few years. There is a fair bit of work to be done inside and out. There are some issues we need to address to meet ADA standards that make up the majority of what needs to be done before opening. All of it is manageable tho, it simply comes down to the time it takes to get it all done. As for making it a space we are proud to call home, there is still a fair bit of that to do as well. Walls, floors, lighting, gardens (yeah how rad is that gardens!), and of course when all else is done a fresh coat of paint!

One of the best parts of the whole move is to be a part of the downtown community in Doylestown. Just since we have been working on the space we have already met and become friendly with a number of the local business owners. It is truly amazing how welcoming everyone has been. We have big plans to host more gallery shows, promote live music in town (most likely at Siren Records, one of my favorite record shops for over 20 years, that just happens to be about 30 yards from our front door!) and turn up the frequency of guest artists coming through. All of these things are just the sorts of activities that this town embraces. Man, im getting stoked just typing about it! haha

I could go on and on about the new place, but i’ll save you the rambling. Suffice to say it’s gonna be rad as hell!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Standing Like A Stone Wall.

This past weekend I was lucky enough to have a painting hanging At Punkrockfish Gallery in Ocean City MD. A good friend (and a hell of a good tattooer at Black Cobra in MD) Little Chico invited me to be a part of his show titled 8x10.

As you may be able to guess the only real requirement for the work, is that it fit into the 8" x 10" size requirement. There is a newspaper article about the show and about Chico here... Having the freedom of subject matter allowed me to put the time into an idea i had been kicking around for a bit. I have been on a bit of an American Civil War kick lately and wanted to do a piece about the great Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson. I had recently finished reading/listening to a brilliantly written bio about him called "Standing Like a Stone Wall" by James Robertson. In the book Mr. Robertson gets fairly descriptive in Stonewall's personality and history. Jackson was an eccentric to say the least.

To do a painting of him, it was impossible to simply choose one or two key elements of his life to focus on. Instead I tried to focus on various stages of his life, and tried to use imagery to point out some of the occurrences and traits that i thought defined him as a man and as a General. With his unwavering faith in God's will to his brilliance and bravery on the battlefield, it is easy to miss the more bizarre and quirky parts of what made him the man he was. For instance: He would hold his hand up, palm facing forward, at random points during the day weather he was in the middle of a battle or not. He would do so either in prayer (as he was commonly heard mumbling to himself), or because he insisted that one of his arms was actually heaver than the other and he wanted to get the blood to flow out of the raised arm to balance himself out. I could go on and on but have not the time to explain it all. A few folks have specifically questioned why in the painting he has a Northern Pike draped across his lap. The short version of that image is: As a child Thomas was paid .50 by a local townsman for each pike he caught that was 12" or larger. One day he caught one that was at least 36" and as he carried the massive fish through town, another shopkeeper offered Thomas $1 for the fish. When Thomas declined the man offered $1.25. Thomas declined again explaining the fish was owed to the other fellow at the agreed price of .50 and if he himself wanted a taste of that fish, it could be had through the other gentleman. When Thomas got to his destination he was offered an extra .50 because the fish was so big. Thomas said the original agreed price was all he would accept. He was sure the man had paid full price for a few fish that fell short of the 12" mark, and he was grateful for that kindness.  

Anyhow, I can nerd out all night but i doubt most of you care enough for me to bother. If you are truly interested drop me a line and i will explain further what all of the silliness in the painting represents. As for the painting itself, it is mostly done as an ink wash painting on stained hot press watercolor paper. the highlights and limited color were added at the end with colored pencil. It is an approach to painting I've been working out for a bit now and I'm slowly getting more and more comfortable with it.

Here is the finished piece. Click on it to see it larger. It is set at 72 dpi so it can be viewed reasonably clear, but i am making prints available, so if  you really want to see the detail you could always contact me and ill happily trade you $40 for a limited Giclee. haha sorry for the shameless promotion but i gotta pay for more firewood.
If you got this far, thanks for caring enough!!