Friday, October 29, 2010


Last night we all carved pumpkins. The Strayer’s invited us over for the annual dinner and art festival session. We usually trade off each year as to who will host the carving event. But since Karin was leaving the next day they thought it best to have it over there, which was a big help. After a dinner of chilly and wine, we went at it with knifes and carving tools. Here is the result, all ready to scare the little kids.

The big dilemma is which night will we see the most kids. Here in Utah the local religion doesn’t like to do much of anything on Sunday the 31st, the true Halloween night; so as a result many children will be out Saturday night. Now since we live in a rebellious neighborhood, a neighborhood branded as “those liberal democratic sinners!” I have a feeling most kids will be knocking at our door Sunday night.

I worked a little more on the commission piece this morning. There seems to be just too much going on today to finish it off. Lina has a Halloween parade at school and Karin has to be at the airport for her flight. Tonight I also need to make an appearance at the Southam Gallery; they are having a show with several artists, one of them being me!

Richard Boyer

Thursday, October 28, 2010

On Tuesday we had a small snow storm blow through, I forgot to post a pic of that. Talk about a depressing sight, one week its in the 70’s then wham, its Christmas time !

Well now its back in the plus degrees and most of the snow has melted.

It’s good to have the parents here. It would be a lot nicer if they lived closer so the children would get to know them better. Once every four years doesn’t really give them a good picture of what they are like. Karin’s mother they know really well since we are over in Sweden most of the summer. Elsie has become part of the family!

Here it is still in progress!

Today I worked on the commission piece, bringing up the foreground pier and some of the boats. I’ll work more on those tomorrow as well. The crit I’m going to miss tonight. Since Karin is leaving for Sweden tomorrow to visit her mother for the next nine days, I figure it‘s best to stay here with her and the parents on her last night. Next week I’ll have to get up early, make the lunches and push the kids out the door for school.

At least the house is ready for Halloween. I’ll be serving hot apple cider fortified with Vodka to the adults….so if your thirsty drop by!!!

Richard Boyer

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


It seems like I’ve been running around taking care of small odds and ends for the last couple of days. With the parents coming to visit this evening Karin and I find ourselves cleaning parts of the house we would normally never touch in a million years. Yup it’s called “excessive compulsive cleaning” and prevalent amongst all offspring when the parents return for a visit. “Let’s pull out the refrigerator and clean under there and just look at all that chaos in the pantry!!! This is why many choose to meet in neutral territory, like a hotel in some remote part of the country.

I worked on the commission piece today of the harbor scene, but with all the interruptions I didn’t get much done. And figured it wasn’t worthy of a photo, maybe after tomorrow I’ll have more to show for myself.

Right now I’m off to the store to buy new @%$# bath mats for the master bathroom, where they will be staying.

I shouldn’t complain too much, once its all done it does look a lot better.

Richard Boyer

Monday, October 25, 2010

Monday, Oct 25

Its days like this, when I wish I lived on a warm tropical Caribbean island. Snow is in the air here in Salt Lake and the damp cold temperatures seem to be driving their way into your bones. Yes it was time to fire up the heating system again, gone are those fall days of 75 degrees and the warmth of the sun. My studio was uncomfortably cool this morning. With the radiant floor heating it takes a while to heat the mass of the cement up under the wood flooring. Once its at the right temperature, its really quite nice on the toes!

My parents are coming out to visit tomorrow. They were scheduled to see us two weeks ago during Fall break when it was nice and warm. But due to some pesky virus they postponed the trip until now. So I warned them to bring along the full winter gear. My Dad didn’t like the idea of a dusting of snow for his arrival, all of this according to weather people at the news station.

I changed a few things on this piece today. The crit gang thought the waves behind the boat were too much of a lead-in, so I toned that all down and broke up the tree on the left side. I also worked on some of the boats to the left and played up the light on the canal water.

Richard Boyer

Friday, October 22, 2010


Well I changed a few things after listening to the crit session. On the bikers I worked on the saddle bags and defined the back end of the bike more. Now it looks like the girl is actually sitting on something.

With the canal piece I took out the blue boat and put a larger river barge in there. Their comment last night was that the smaller boat was getting lost, especially with a blue hull. So maybe now it will stand out better!

Richard Boyer

Thursday, October 21, 2010


It’s been a while since I was at a crit session, seems like every Thursday I have been out of town or had something planned. But tonight it will go forward and I will be there. Nick is hosting it this time and I have a bunch of 12x16’s to be looked at.

I worked on the bikers again today, bringing up the contrast some more and adding color where ever I could without going overboard. This is one of those pieces I had a little fun with and I’d like to try some more scenes similar.

The next one to be finished off, or at least until I hear the list of things to change from the crit personal tonight, was the Amsterdam piece from Keizergracht. That too I brought up the contrast more and worked on the water. I have a bunch more of these pieces from the trip that I need to finish off and get up on the web site. It always takes much longer than you think to finish off a body of work you bring back from a trip!

Richard Boyer

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

As for my camera tax refund, I’m still waiting. They finally responded from Amsterdam saying that they transferred the money, but so far I haven’t heard from my bank. I guess I should know now how that saying goes “The check is in the mail!”

I tried a little 16x12 study today of some bikers in Amsterdam. When we were there, one bright sunny morning I shot these people on their way to work and thought it would make for a cool painting. I liked the back light effects and the little girl on the book rack of the front bike. If it turns out I wouldn’t mind doing a larger version of it, maybe a horizontal piece.

Richard Boyer

Monday, October 18, 2010

Monday, Oct 18

We are back in sunny Salt Lake City again and the dog is limping around the house. I guess she ran around on our vacation a little too much.

On Sunday we split up and Markus, Victor and I did some desolate mountain bike trail at a place along interstate 70 called Rabbit Canyon. This area is generally known for ATV’s and motorbikes. But if you head south off the freeway and then east along a dirt road that follows next to the highway for ten miles or so. You come to this remote butte that overlooks the Colorado below. This is the area they set aside for mountain bikers! Here the trail, a primitive loose rocky one at best descends some 1500 feet down to the river below; much of it being so loose that you had to get off the bike and walk over what resembled talus fields. If fact more than half of the way down we had to walk and that went also for the way back up. Victor and I both felt the same misery over the poor conditions of the train, our arms tired from lifting the bikes over boulders all the way back to the car. We promised never to do it again. Our reward was a dusty ride through Tamarisk bushes at the bottom.

Sasha, the dog kept an even pace with us regardless if we were traveling fast or walking the bike. The dog knows no limit and must be feeling it today.

At five in the evening we were all done and started the drive back to Salt Lake. The skies were getting cloudy as a front moved in. Sure enough as we hit Price, just before the climb up over Soldier Summit the skies let loose a deluge of rain.

We finally arrived home at ten at night all tired from the drive. The dog slept through much of the driving, but for us it was time for a drink!

On the good side, today I found out that Jim at the Mockingbird Gallery sold this 24x36 piece for me !!!

Maybe there will be a Christmas after all.

Richard Boyer

Saturday, October 16, 2010


Today we did a little mountain biking. Kim and Ed came over from Moab to join in and the boys took off on one loop and the girls did the beginner loop with Lina.

Trying to follow a seventeen year old teenager on a route can sometimes be a changing event. The word careful and cautious are not part of his vocabulary. Markus considered most cliff edges as a minor inconvenience where one just had to lean back off the seat and go for it. Some of the terrain that can be considered a bike trail is mind boggling. Riding on a bike off of two foot drops every few feet on an inclined rock slab next to a hundred foot cliff can put your mind a bit uneasy. After about five miles my legs were feeling it, but I still have to say that the trip was an adventure. We had spectacular view of the Colorado river below and some gorgeous sandstone to look at.

Now we are having gin & tonics back at the hotel with pizza. Tomorrow we head back to Salt Lake in the afternoon.

Richard Boyer

Friday, October 15, 2010


Today we visited Colorado National Monument, we thought it would be fun to take the dog along and do some mountain biking there. Right, first off they didn’t allow mountain biking on any trails in the park, just the main road. Second, was the dog. No pet allowed on any trails within the park boundaries. Our plans were shot to hell. The ranger charging us the entrance fee saw that in our faces. She showed us a spot just outside the east entrance of the park where it was popular to bike. Tabeguache trailhead was a well-maintained system of trails ranging from a simple kids loop to the radically extreme.

We agreed to do the park loop first and I’m glad we did. The road switch backed its way up through the sandstone layers to the top of the ridgeline, from there it followed along the edge of the massive cliffs as it looped its way around overlooks down the valleys to the flat plains below of Grand Junction, Colorado. Erosion had isolated pinnacles from the canyon wall and in the morning light I could see several paintings. Why else would they have an overlooked called “Artist Point”

Okay I may have gone over the top with the picture taking, both Victor and Lina kept rolling their eyes every time I wanted to stop for a photo. Halfway through they were both ready for some biking.

Finally at the end with a view of the town below, we dropped off the edge for the final descent down the winding road. They both looked at me and we stopped the car, unloaded the bikes and then they took off on the downhill coast. I followed along behind as they banked their way around the tight curves to the park entrance at the bottom. They continued on the extra mile to the trailhead of Tabeguache, where we all met up to do a little off road mountain biking.

Within minutes Victor took off on the vortex of death up the ridgeline. Lina and I stayed on the Bambi loop, or kids loop. Even there, some frustrating words were heard from her about the problems of shifting gears up the small hills.

We are now chilling back at the hotel room. Karin, who had to work today, will arrive later on tonight with Markus.

Richard Boyer

Thursday, October 14, 2010


Some where along the desolate stretch of interstate 70, past the turn off to Moab, past the sign warning of the last gas station, lies the ghost town of Cisco. A town that time forgot, abandoned since the uranium boom and left to the desert tumble weed. A town that for a brief moment in Hollywood history was put back on the map in the film “Vanishing Point” three decades ago. A town where the lone UPS truck drives a dusty road to deliver the mail to the last occupant in a dilapidated trailer home.

This is where we spent our time this afternoon, a stop along the barren four-lane highway and out of sign from the passing traffic. We listened to the wind blowing through the ruins of the former town, exploring what was left of the gas station, general store and post office. Floorboards rotted apart from age, an old mattress stained and discarded in the corner with broken whiskey bottles. One by one the tenants left long ago leaving little behind, except for the few signs advertising their existence.

We shot some pictures, walked the dog and moved on to Colorado. Taking in the impressions of what it might have looked like in its hay-day.

We are now at the Comfort Inn in Fruita. Tomorrow we will head up to the Colorado National Monument to do some fun mountain biking, or so we have heard. The check-in clerk at the hotel here seemed clueless about any kind of physical activity. Luckily we met somebody from Vail who filled us in on where to go tomorrow. He had come down to Fruita to do some mountain biking and seemed quite knowledgeable about it all.

Richard Boyer

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


I started on a 20x30 piece today, just a block in, not much to show. This is more or less how I start a piece, by pushing around shapes until it looks right for me. I find it takes a lot longer to draw it out in line, and then I just get hung up on trying to make it all perfect. With shape and forms I can work more with negative spaces and block it in quicker.

For the last month here I have been trying to get a refund on the tax money I paid over in Holland on my Camera I bought in Amsterdam. It’s about as difficult as pulling the wisdom teeth out of our cat! I sent them all the required customs stamps and bank info, but they have been working like the speed of a glacier. Not answering my emails and shuffling it back and forth from office to office. I’m sure now that they are doing it on purpose and thinking that what the hell, the client is back in the States, what could he do about it?

Well I got the address of the customs office in the Netherlands and will now try to complain to them. Maybe they can pull their weight around and threaten them. Other than that about the only thing I can do is to harass them with emails. They are supposed to refund the tax money for anyone outside of the European Community, not keep it for their Canary Island retreat!

Tomorrow we drive down to Fruita, Colorado for the Fall break.

Richard Boyer

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


I left a couple of pieces at the crit session last Thursday and this one was bashed apart, they thought the figure looked too “frumpy”. Lord knows you don’t want a frumpy figure in the painting. I just had to define what frumpy meant and fix it?

From what I could gather, they didn’t like the bucket nor the bland colored dress. Carlie didn’t like the blouse either, but since I like it, I’m going to ignore that comment and let it be. It looks a lot better than a normal tee-shirt, which is most likely what she would have on. I did change the angle on her head so she is not looking at something that isn’t there and put a watering can in her hand as well. I added a little more to the dress to see if that will take care of the “frumpiness”

This other piece, a 12x16 I did for the Southam Gallery, they are having a show either this weekend or next. They seem to be impossible to get a hold of so I never know these things! We leave this Thursday for southern Utah. All the schools have fall break now for a week. That’s why it would be nice to know if I need to get these works down to them before I leave or not?

Richard Boyer

Monday, October 11, 2010

Monday, Oct. 11

I’m back in Salt Lake now and worked on this little fall scene for Southam Gallery.

The trip up to Seattle was fun, that first Thursday evening when I arrived Scott took me out to dinner at The Dahlia Lounge. One of Seattle’s many fine restaurants. We splurged on wine and fine dinning, along with dessert and cognac.

The next day I walked around the galleries in Pioneer Square, all of them quite modern. I really tried to find something representational, but I guess that just isn’t what’s in style there! They did have a wide selection of homeless people on every corner, adding to the local flavor. After a few hours I was bored seeing the same old art work and decided to walk over to the Seattle Art Museum, they just opened an exhibition about Picasso. The collection stretched with a good amount of paintings over his entire life, along with pictures of his many wives from that time. The young new models and sex really seemed to drive his subject matter through out his life.

In the evening we met up with Dave Strayer, who was there during the same time giving a deposition and took the boat over to Winslow to eat dinner at a small pub over looking Seattle. It was good to take a load off and chill with a local beer on the deck overlooking Seattle at night.

Saturday was the show at Howard/Mandville and as I thought the economy has taken its toll once again. Plenty of people interested, but no takes. We’ll just have to wait and see if some need to think it over first before they buy. As my luck had it, when I went out to he car after the show there was a soggy parking ticket pressed against my wet windshield. The city of Kirkland felt it more important to screw the visiting population instead of promoting local business. A big sign towering overhead told the visitor of free three hour parking, a smaller sign slightly off to the side mentioned that one had to pay after five in the evening. Most other cities would have it the other way around with free parking in the evening to promote restaurants!

At least the Kirkland Police department is doing their part to drive down business in the town !!!

Richard Boyer

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Crit night again to night, but I shall be up in Seattle. The flight leaves later on this afternoon, so I’ll be up there just in time to catch a pub for dinner. Scott, my brother was going to meet me at the airport. The show isn’t until Saturday evening, but I thought it would be fun to hang out and visit Scott for a while. Looks like its raining in Seattle again, what else is new!

I worked on this one today, another painting where I got rained on before I could finish it. The day I did this it started out sunny and warm, then within an hour the dark ominous rain clouds moved in. The wind picked up and soon I was holding on to the easel for fear of it blowing away.

I’ll see if I can leave these with the crit group for tonight, since it’s just up the street at Nick’s place.

Yesterday I worked on the electrical in the basement, putting in the two-way dimmer switches for the ceiling lights. It’s always a test in memory after the sheet rockers cover up all the wires and you just have a bundled mess of the ends stuffed inside an electrical box, which you have to make sense of. I had to call our electrician friend David up several times for a little tech support. Turns out one of the switches was bad from Home Depot and now the new one switches off the lights from one receptacle, but not the other!

Maybe a few days off and I’ll be able to see it in a different light (no pun intended!)

Richard Boyer

Tuesday, October 5, 2010


I added a figure to this piece. At the last crit session everyone said it needed something of interest. Soooooooo I added the water carrier girl, actually it's a relative I photographed over the summer in Sweden. With the bucket it looks like she is watering the flowers and hopefully adds some more excitement to the painting.

Now reluctantly I need to go down to our basement and work on another kind of painting, mainly the walls. Yes that age old tradition of paint brush and roller. We decided to do a faux finish on two walls to make it look like stones, something Karin got out of a Martha Stewart magazine. Once that is done I can put the final touches on the electrical. We need to get the plugs and lights all working.

Next week I have my parents coming out for a visit and they will need a bedroom to stay in. We just happen to have one in the basement, but its filled up with all the junk we had to transfer from the main room before the sheet rockers did their thing.

Richard Boyer

Monday, October 4, 2010

Monday, Oct. 4

Here is todays project. Its a piece I got back from Mockingbird Gallery. I spent the morning re-touching it a little. I also sent off the last two paintings to Howard/Mandville Gallery and they should be arriving there in a few days. Fedex seems to be somewhat reliable, unlike UPS where they use Burros to deliver.

On Thursday I'll fly up to Seattle for the show on Saturday. My brother, Scott lives up there, so we will have time to socialize in the local pub.

This painting above is for the Southam show a few weeks down the road. They are doing "The Great Outdoors" as their subject matter. So I'm hoping they can pull in some people for the show in this depressed economy! I'll have this one and several other river paintings, along with two other artists we should have enough for a good show.

Richard Boyer

Saturday, October 2, 2010


Last night we saw Blue October at the “Venue” here in Salt Lake. We had front row spots on the balcony with a killer view of the band !

This old converted warehouse on the west side has a small balcony up above the main floor for those over 21 who which to drink beer. We looked down on the crowd of sweat covered bodies packed together, as we sipped a few pitchers from above watching the warm up group, The Parlotones. This South African band won the International song writing competition last year and has been touring with Blue October. Their music was really quite good and they even had help from the Blue October violinist on one of their songs.

After maybe an hour and a half they had the stage cleared off and the equipment set up for the Group from Texan. For the next two hours front man, Justin Furstenfeld poured his emotions out in some fantastic work. Their lyrics can sometimes be a little on the dark side as they deal a lot with suicidal subject matter.

The band has joined up with the Suicide Prevention hotline for a fund raising session. Justin told the crowd how he had to deal with the issues when he was a teenager and now wants to bring the message out to all about the feelings and experiences one goes through. Some of the songs were actually quite powerful. Not to far off from some of the earlier work by U2 with their political subject matter. The small size of this building made for an up close and personal experience with the band.

I worked just a little more on this one yesterday, painting out the third figure at the top of the stairs and bringing up some of the reflected light in the left wall.

Richard Boyer