My Arctic Circle Expedition is still months away (I leave on September 28th, 2018), but I’m trying to take advantage of end-of-season sales to get myself better outfitted for the Arctic.
Some of you know me as the guy who wears shorts year-round (Denver, Columbus, Portland… doesn’t matter!). I’m usually warm, so I just don’t have much colder-weather gear in my closet. But, on a recent winter trip to Boise, I was reminded that I CAN actually get cold, so I need to be prepared for the Arctic by planning on more than shorts and tees for my wardrobe.
Trying on big, puffy jackets isn’t a whole lot of fun for me and I began to overheat in the snapshot below, but here I am hitting an end-of-season sale for warm outerwear that I just don’t have…
Nearly a year ago, I posted that I was accepted for a truly epic artist’s residency: The Arctic Circle 2018 Autumn Arts & Sciences Expedition in October, 2018.
Wow. I’m super excited as the super-long anticipation and lead time gets shorter… 18 months from when I was accepted has now shrunk to just 6 months. And, I’m thrilled to announce that after a month-long campaign on Kickstarter to raise the funds necessary to participate, I am fully funded!
A huge thank-you to those Backers on Kickstarter who pledged funds now to receive paintings of various sizes at the end of this year to help me get to the Arctic Circle. Now that I’m through the funding phase, I have lots of work to do to get organized, outfitted for the Arctic environment and experiment with how I’ll paint my abstracts on a ship in the middle of the Arctic Circle!
As a guy who generally likes to be well-prepared, I’m thinking this summer will go quickly and in no time I’ll be in the Arctic, soaking up the frozen inspirations and making art… somehow and of some sort!
Summer is officially over and I know some of my art fans have been wondering what I’ve been up to since I haven’t been posting much new art around here.
Well, I’d like to introduce you to my latest, creative endeavor… Chop Shop Wear! Yes – I’ve taken my creative eye and applied it to a fashion idea that I’ve been percolating on for awhile. In a nutshell, Chop Shop Wear is a fashion “chop shop” where we acquire previously-owned men’s luxury-brand shirts and chop shop them (cut them up), re-purposing the material to make pockets for one-of-a-kind pocket shirts.
Some of you know that I’m most comfortable in shorts and tee shirts all year long. But, I also love me some luxurious, designer shirts, especially when I can buy previously-owned ones for a few dollars rather than spend hundreds for a new shirt. Case in point – I’ve had a long-sleeve Versace shirt in my closet for years that I purchased at a thrift store for $5. With a bit of research, I discovered that this shirt originally retailed for over $400! But, I rarely wore it until I started thinking about how to re-use the cool fabric on something I’d wear all the time – like a tee or polo shirt. How about cutting up my $400 Versace shirt and re-using the fabric to make pockets for some fun pocket tee shirts. Or pocket polo shirts. Or hoodies!
Fast forward through the summer… learning to sew, buying my first sewing machine, figuring out how to creatively “chop shop” luxury shirts and making pockets from the material, developing and testing prototype shirts, creating an initial Chop Shop Wear brand and logo… and officially launching Chop Shop Wear!
Whew! I invite you to check it all out – I’ve created an online store — www.chopshopwear.com — and stocked it with lots of great pockets to choose from. And just for being a blog reader of mine, please feel free to use a special savings code, “ChopFriend” at checkout to save 25% off your entire first order!
And that, my friends, is what I was up to this summer!
Where do I begin? Well, perhaps I’ll start with where I ended up…. Columbus, Ohio. Nine months ago, the cats and I made the two-day drive from Denver to Columbus to join my partner, Steve, in our new home. Steve had received an opportunity to transfer within his company to the regional office in Columbus and, since we had been talking about “going on an adventure” for awhile, we jumped on it. And landed smack in the middle of Ohio.
While Steve’s new job got off to a great start, I quickly became deeply involved in helping care for my 85-year-old Uncle Jack. The court here in Ohio appointed me his legal guardian and I spent much of the Spring and Summer travelling up to Cleveland to help care for Uncle Jack’s health and finances. Sadly, my Uncle Jack passed away at the end of the Summer… may he rest in peace!
So, now I’m making art in my basement studio that I’ve set up. A lot of pent-up paintings are now flowing. They’ll be showing up here soon, so stay tuned for more posts from Columbus!