Sunday, May 31, 2015


Sunrise Cloud Pattern, 6 x 8 oil
It is our first day on Maui, and we're at Costco.  I buy a big bag of apple bananas.  Because apple bananas are the number two reason I come to Hawaii, snorkelling being number one.  Well, maybe painting is number two.  Anyway, they're up there.

Rick says they are way too green and I shouldn't buy them.  But I've been in this position before when I couldn't find bananas anywhere.  These should be ripe by our second week.  I insist on buying them.

It is now day 5.  The first finger on the hand is going yellow.  Yay!  We did find bananas other places, to tide us over until these were ripe.  Gather ye bananas while ye may!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015


Mackerel Sunrise, 9 x 12 oil
In almost all the bays on Maui, you can hear whale song if you put your ears underwater.  You can hear a lot more of it if you are in shallow water near the mouth of the bay.  And if there are no motorboats about.  And if you aren't breathing loudly.  And if your head is deeper underwater.

I have found that the best way to listen is to stand on my head in the water, holding my breath, and quietly swirling my hands to keep my balance.  It appears to be a unique solution: I haven't seen any other snorkellers doing it.

Sunday, May 24, 2015


Golden Sunrise, 6 x 8 oil
Every evening there is a guy two balconies down from us who blows a conch at sunset.  He has his own special way of deciding when the sun has set, which I haven't figured out yet.  One night there is an actual disk visible, and he blows the sunset call while the last bit of the disk is still twinkling on the horizon.  Another night, the sun is obscured by clouds.  When is the actual moment of sunset?  I would be tempted to consult a table on some of these nights.  Whenever it is, it's always uniquely beautiful.

Thursday, May 21, 2015


Cloudy Sunrise, 6 x 8 oil on panel
As soon as the sun goes down, it begins.  A sound like a motorboat, or maybe a dirt bike, but long sustained sound with short pauses.  We are staying at Luana Kai, an oceanfront property with a spongy lawn in front, and a waterfilled ditch beside.  And, as it turns out, a great place for frogs;  Or in this case, toads, the infamous Rhinella marina, or Cane Toad.  The call reminds me of the drawn-out tones of a didgeridoo, though the toads do eventually take a breath.  Some nights there are one or two, some nights many.  A toadly chorus to accompany the sound of waves.

Monday, May 18, 2015


Honokeana Mackerel Sunrise, 12 x 9 oil
Moorish idols are really pretty fish.  Now that I have my weight belt, I have the chance to see how really pretty they are.  I have found a pair that are not too skittish, and they allow me to approach within two feet.  I am surprised at how large they are.  And how brilliant yellow.  They have lots of little markings on their noses that I never noticed before.  How wonderful to be able to get close and see!

Friday, May 15, 2015


Hamoa Sunrise, 9 x 12 oil
We are driving to Hana in the rain.  Ordinarily, I would think rain would make a dreary drive.  But oh, the waterfalls!   Last time we drove this road the weather had been dry and many of the falls had no water at all.  This time there is water everywhere.  Some falls are rushing and brown.  The closer we get to Hana, the clearer the water is, but all the falls are all full. Not content to stay in the streams, water is pouring over the rocks and onto the highway.  Sodden soils have slumped into the road, closing off the hillside lane.  This on a road that is only really two lanes half the time.  The road to Hana.... always an adventure!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015


Hot Sunrise, 12 x 9 oil

We have had showers in our forecast the last few days, and the next few days to come.  We are finding that if we just set out for some other part of the island, we can find some sunshine and calm for snorkelling.  The other day, we found it in Honolua bay.  There we had the clearest snorkelling I've ever had at that site, and saw lots of brilliant fish.  As I was getting out, I asked the lady next to me how her snorkel was.  She said she hardly saw anything, but she was used to Fiji and other exotic places.  I couldn't argue; Hawaii isn't the best.  But here we are, and I insist on enjoying it.  How can you complain about a place where you can drive for ten minutes and get out of the rain?

Friday, May 8, 2015


Cliffside Palm, 16 x 12 oil

I am REALLY buoyant.   That's just how it is.  Today I got a weight belt for snorkeling. With my magical weights, I am neutral at the surface, my mask rising and falling above the waterline as I breathe.  Trouble is, when I free dive, I take in a big breath, and I am once again buoyant.  I don't really think I want so much weight that I am negatively buoyant when I breathe out, that just doesn't seem safe.  Today I experimented with breathing some of my air out.  Better underwater, but when I came up I didn't have enough juice to clear my snorkel.  This is going to be a tricky balancing act.

Monday, May 4, 2015


Kula Vista, oil 12 x 16

We drive first thing in the morning for Kula, where I am meeting the Maui Plein Air Painters.  Up and up we go, above the Lavender farm where the newly paved one-lane road has steep edges with no room for passing.  From here, we have a view of the isthmus, West Maui, Lanai, and Kahului.  I set up to paint in a stand of painted eucalyptus, torn between painting the valley view or the colorful trees.  Most of the way through my painting, the clouds roll in.  Anyone who arrives now will have to paint the fog.

Friday, May 1, 2015


Line of Palms

Maui has quite a bit of desert, out here in the middle of the ocean.  So we are not surprised to see prickly pear cactus which has taken a hold in the desert area near Ahihi.  But here in Kula, the prickly pear is 8 feet tall and overgrown with grasses, mixed among mango trees and bananas.  Like a desert plant growing in the rainforest. What's up with that?