Cold and frosty out this morning. May reach sixty this afternoon. Clouds clearing out but we've got another one coming in right behind. Got some more storm studies in the works:
This is the mountain range north of our house and as the big storms raked across the ridges, the runoff filled our roads, turning them into shallow streams (foreground).
Started to prep a big canvas last night for the Pat Garrett and Billy the kid painting, but my industrial can of Gesso (rabbit gut canvas prep) was too gooped up and I needed a stirring stick and it was getting dark and cold, so I put it off and went inside to get warm.
And I wonder why I'm not more successful?
"You need to go out into the cold."
Lighten up Norweigan Boy, it's on my list to do today.
Meanwhile, I advanced two San Carlos set pieces yesterday. These are works in progress as well (see previous posts for earlier versions):
Although both started as studies for the same scene, as they developed, I was inspired to create an opening set piece (above) for a sequence in the Mickey Free book, where the rogue Apache Curly brings 21 horses for Beauty's father (in order to win her hand). Never mind that they were all stolen off the Hashknife spread near Holbrook and will bring down untold grief on Beauty's family.
From the wide shot, we come in tighter, panning down, to this:
We're dropping down into the Gila River bottom, as Curly drives the herd towards Bylas, where Beauty and her family live on the San Carlos Res (not sure if Bylas was there in 1888, need to find out). Still need to add the rambling herd of Hashknife ponies and Curly driving them.
Going to be a challenging sequence but I am excited.
One of the criticisms we got for the Mickey Free excerpt that ran in True West is that none of the characters were fleshed out enough. A bigtime Hollywood director told the Top Secret Writer that there was not enough character development. And as Rusty York told me yesterday on the phone, "I really liked the Mickey Free excerpt, but I wanted more."
The book will have plenty more. Robert Ray and I worked out the template last Friday and it's clocking in at 128 pages, which is plenty of room to create Mickey's world and tell plenty of the back stories, and flesh out the chase. Still need to storyboard the entire story.
Lots of work to do. I know I need to go out into the cold, but sometimes these words from Jack Handey ring in my head:
"Instead of studying for finals, what about just going to the Bahamas and catching some rays? Maybe you'll flunk, but you might have flunked anyway; that's my point."