Recently I delivered a painting back to its forever home. 

My best friend and I have been friends for 30 years. We know everything there is to know about each other and at one point, over 12 years ago, I decided to paint her. 

Now my friend is not normal- and I mean that in the absolute best way.  When her girls were very young they loved animals, so she she decided to raise some chicks. But not just raise them- get the eggs, incubate them, turn the eggs every 3 hours (even through the night) and let her daughters watch the chickens hatch and then take care of them. 

This is not that unusual for this extraordinary mom. She has also raised baby preying mantises in her living room, had cocoons of monarch butterflies for many years in a huge tank in her house because she fed the catepillars and then let the butterflies be released at the middle school for her daughters’ classes. She has rescued pit bulls and even saved a pregnant dog to have a litter of puppies in her basement.  A rescued cat and then there was the chinchilla…..

The plan was to only keep the chickens for a little while and once they were older to give them to a farm. So when the chickens hatched there was a surprise-  the chicks were all supposed to be female. But one was a rooster. 

Now this little male chick did not know he was a rooster.  The daughters carried him around like a puppy and he acted just like one.  This led the neighbors to think she was a little crazy. Which led to my painting, “Half-Cocked” 

When I started this painting I knew that I wanted her holding the rooster and talking on the phone.  I had seen her do this and I thought it was a hoot. I shot a bunch of film and then she posed for me holding a bag of sugar. We laughed while I painted. It wasn’t supposed to be this big, but I guess it just needed to be because it is one of the biggest pastel paintings I have ever done. I dripped water down the pastel in the background to simulate a “chicken coop” kind of setting, and even studied a roosters’ toes.  

When the painting was finished and framed it was almost 50″ high.  I entered it in a show and it did well and then it came back to me. I was then just going to give it to my friend, but her walls were not big enough to display it. Great planning on my part… lol.

So I kept it for her. I has it kept me company in my studio spaces over the years and it was like having her nearby. Two years ago she moved to Columbia, South Carolina and she was the first person to mention that I might want to look at nearby Greenville. I did and the rest is history. The biggest bonus to Greenville is that we are only an hour and a half away from each other. We frequently get together and ride around with the top down on my Jeep and sing badly to AC/DC. 

Jeep hair. We don’t care. 

My friend is in a new house and she now has the wall space for the painting. So recently I delivered it to where it should have been all along.  With her.  Here are some pics and a video….


“Half-Cocked” pastel, 45 x 32.”

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