I’m a whistful old man…

Title: Shades of my Youth Medium: India ink, pen and ink, watercolor, gesso on old skateboard deck Price: Not for sale.
Title: Shades of my Youth
Medium: India ink, pen and ink, watercolor, gesso on old skateboard deck
Price: Not for sale.

This is the first skateboard I ever had.  Well, the first real skateboard (my first actual skateboard was this old-school sidewalk surfer thing that was about four inches side–different story though).  This board, a G&S Billy Ruff pro model, had white Tracker trucks and bright green urethane Cross Bones wheels.  It was awesome.  I skated it just about every day.  The top is rippled and warped from all the times I skated in the rain.  I unearthed it from my parents’ basement not too long ago and immediately got after it with an orbital sander and some varnish with a very clear image in my mind of what I wanted to create.

During the prep/reconstruction process it slowly occurred to me that this deck is a quarter-century old.  Holy crap.  That’s old.  With this in mind, I set to create on a pseudo-self portrait and tweaked my original plan.  I think the final product conveys the many ways in which memories can make a person feel older than they actually are.  The span of time has a funny way of creating this feeling of split personality–like it was someone else that owned this skateboard as a little kid.  And the guy that just painted on it is someone else entirely.

I entered this piece into a peer-juried art show a few months back and won.  The night of the show I almost backed out.  Told my wife I didn’t think this piece was any good, that people wouldn’t really get it.  Driving home from the show that night I decided that from now I’ll quit trying to figure out what people like and don’t like and just keep painting…

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