Spring Travels #2: Best Painting Partner Ever!

Eric Rhoads and the good people at Plein Air Magazine were kind enough to let me bring my 13 year-old son along to the Plein Air Convention .  I’ve traveled so much in the last couple of years, and though it’s been invigorating, I miss my family.  Jasper has always enjoyed painting, so I decided that it would be fun to have him along.  I figured I’d get less painting done, but it’d be a great opportunity for us to hang out.  AND we’d been offered a place to stay on a property bordering Garrapata State Park on the rugged CA coast.


I should have known that Jasper is a different breed of kid.  Most days we woke early, painted somewhere along the coast, headed north to Monterey for the convention to catch the seminars, (including great presentations by T. Allen Lawson, Quang Ho, Len Chmiel, George Carlson, Kim Lordier, and many others!) and painted again in the evening with the scores of other artists that came for the convention.  We’d scarf down dinner at 9pm or later, crawl to bed, and repeat the order the next day. I still can’t believe how many paintings we produced during the visit.

Check out a couple of the paintings that Jasper did during the trip!  (Remember, he’s only 13!!!)

Special thanks to Yolanda and her family for providing us with a splendid place to stay.  It was magical!


Perhaps the biggest surprise of the trip came the last day of the convention.  When Eric Rhoads found out that my son was painting with me, he suggested he bring a painting with him to the closing session of the convention, so that it could be auctioned off.  So Jasper brought one of his pastel paintings up onto stage in front of hundreds of artists.  Eric asked him if he wanted to be an artist when he grew up.

“Maybe as a hobby,” Jasper replied.  Everyone laughed.

Somewhat taken aback, Eric asked, “So, what do you want to be?”

“A theoretical physicist.” Jasper answered as though it was the obvious choice.

That’s my boy!

The bidding started at $25 and went up to $550! AND he sold a second piece in the show.


Guess you could say I’m proud of the kid!  AND, it inspired other artists to take their kids or grandkids out painting… What a great community of artists I’m a part of!

I suppose I should mention that I had the honor to teach a seminar during the convention.


What will stick with me for years to come is the magical time with my singularly unique son and all the talented artists painting the magical Pacific Ocean.  Whether he becomes a physicist or a an artist, or something altogether different, it will be an adventure worth following.

Categories: Plein Air Painting TripsTags: , , ,


  1. Thank you for sharing this wonderful and touching story about you and your son! I agree that we should involve our children more in our art. What a beautiful and wonderful gift! I got to be there during the auction for your son’s work it was truly something I will never forget. May you be blessed in all that your doing! Your work is beautiful!


  2. Great exemple of values.Family,enjoyment of nature,connection to the self,great skill.


  3. Been watching Aaron all day and evening. Never thought I could move away from oils, but Aaron has sparked a real interest. Watching Pastel Painting Master Class- Color. Love it! And what a lovely young man, taking his son to the convention with him!


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