Sunday, July 31, 2011

summerland key?

I don't really know where I was when I pulled off US.1 on my way back from Key Largo the other day.

All I knew for sure was, I had to piss like a race-horse and needed a pit stop.

The marina struck me as very colorful and there was a place nearby where I bought some fresh catch fish that, after I got home, cooked up real nice.

Maybe Summerland Key?
I'm not sure but, if anyone can offer any thoughts,
I'd be glad to know.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

yes deer

Out on No Name Key the other day, I came across this family of Key Deer and got curious. . .

"Key Deer" (Odocoileus virginianus clavium) are an endangered species that live only in the Florida Keys. They are a subspecies of the White-tailed deer (O. virginianus)."

It is thought Key Deer migrated to the Florida Keys from the mainland (where else), over a land bridge during the Wisconsin glaciation that happened from about 110,000 to 10,000 years ago and are not found anywhere else
on the planet.

The earliest known written reference to Key Deer comes from Hernando de Escalante Fontaneda, a Spanish sailor who was shipwrecked in the Florida Keys and captured by Native Americans in the 1550s. (talk about no damn luck at all)

The deer were hunted as a food supply by native tribes, passing sailors, and early settlers but the hunting of Key Deer was banned in 1939 when, after widespread poaching and habitat destruction, their population dropped to less than 50 of the critters.

The National Key Deer Refuge, a federally administered National Wildlife Refuge operated by the Wildlife Service, was established in 1957.
The refuge is located in the lower Florida Keys and currently consists of approximately 9,200 acres of pine forests, tropical hardwood hammocks, freshwater wetlands, salt marsh wetlands and mangrove forests on Big Pine Key, No Name Key and several smaller uninhabited islands.
(It turns out, Key Deer can swim between islands.)

There is also a private organization, the Key Deer Protection Alliance, that takes a hands-on approach to helping protect the Key Deer.

Thanks to all these good efforts, the Key Deer population has grown back to between 500 and 800 critters.

Still, living so close to humans, the Key Deer have little natural fear of humans so, as they roam around unabashed, the biggest threat to them is being turned into road kill if they try to cross US.1. The annual estimates are 30 - 40 kills per year.

So if you're driving through Big Pine and see those brown road signs that say 30 MPH, just think "yes deer" and slow the hell down. You might just save a couple of bucks. (pun intended)

Thursday, July 21, 2011

water, water @ IBM

A kind of cool thing has happened in Artman-land over
the last few days.

I was contacted by a woman in New York who represents an ad agency in Los Angeles. It seems the ad agency's client, IBM, is celebrating its 100th anniversary.
As part of that celebration, they're putting together a
multi-screen/multi-media presentation that will run for
a few months at Lincoln Center in NYC and several other venues before being relegated to a single screen presentation on the internet, presumably, for the rest of time.

As part of that presentation, they had been looking "high and low" for a photograph of the surface of water.
(no, I don't know why)

Of all the hundreds or thousands of pictures they found, they chose a picture I posted on "Key West the Blog" way back in early August of 2008 and decided that, yes, they wanted to
use it.

The young lady asked me if I was cool with it, I said "sure" and happily licensed the piece out to them.

I did have to ask her though, how she found an obscure photograph I took of the surface of one of my ex-girlfriend's wading pools, three years ago.
Her reply was. . .
"don't ever underestimate the power of Google."

It just goes to show. . .
. . .you never know.

Click here for the original link.

Monday, July 18, 2011

the blue hole

There's not a whole lot to say about "The Blue Hole" up on
Big Pine Key, some 30 miles northeast of Key West.


It was, by all accounts, a limestone quarry that was used for Henry Flagler's Overseas Railroad and the original roads on Big Pine. After all that, it was abandoned.


Today it's a tourist attraction and part of the National Key Deer Refuge. A lake that is mostly fresh water, it has no inlet or outlet to replenish it so, "The Blue Hole" depends on rain water and whatever salt water might flow through the leftover limestone underground.


It's a place alive with life. While tourists and knucklehead photographers, like me, might visit "The Blue Hole" for a few hours on a lazy Sunday afternoon, there are all kinds of other life forms that call it home all year 'round.

There are Key Deer, Green Iguanas, snakes, bugs, birds
and alligators.
. . .Yep, alligators.
I was only there for a few hours so I didn't see one but
the sign says. . .

DO NOT FEED OR MOLEST THE ALLIGATORS! IT IS DANGEROUS!

(. . .You think??)

Anyway, "The Blue Hole" is yet another quiet sweet-spot in the Keys and, like I said, not much of a story but a target rich environment for pictures of God's green,
(or in this case, blue) earth.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

conch-isms

"Most of us can read the writing on the wall but we just assume it was meant for somebody else."

"I know you think you understand what I said but, what you heard isn’t what I meant."


"If people listened to themselves more often, they’d talk less."


"Don’t ever stand up to be counted; someone will
take your seat."


"Before you decide to borrow money from a friend, decide which you need more."

"Some people don’t hesitate to speak their minds because they have nothing to lose."


"Honesty is the best policy but insanity is a better defense."


"Dyslexics of the world UNTIE!"


"Question: is there another word for synonym?"

"Gravity is a myth. The earth sucks."


"Anyone who says sunshine brings happiness, hasn’t developed skin cancer yet."


"The more people I meet, the more I like my dog."

"I never cease to be dumbfounded by the unbelievable things people believe."

"You wouldn’t worry so much about what other people think about you if you knew how seldom they did."


"The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse
gets the cheese."


"SMILE, it make people wonder what you’re thinking."


"Always remember, you’re unique, just like every body else."


"If it works, take it apart and figure out why."


"Why is the word “abbreviation” so long?"


"All’s well that ends."

Sunday, July 10, 2011

celestial dancer

I was commissioned to draw this piece a few years ago by a girl who had the notion of opening a sort of holistic day-spa.
The work was intended to bolster the spiritual and energetic flow of her endeavor.

"Celestial Dancer", digital illustration by Art Winstanley, © 2011

It's spacial background acknowledges that we are all, to quote Carl Sagan, "the stuff of stars" and one in a common being. The dancer herself, broken to imply the ancient-ness of the Hindu tradition in which she exists and gracefully positioned to translate our inherent energy on this physical plane of being. The hoops, with respect to order and color, represent the 7 chakras that govern that energy.

Sadly, the day-spa had a short shelf-life and not as many spiritually minded eyeballs as I had hoped, as an artist, saw the piece.

So to share all her spiritual energy and set her good intentions free, I've posted my commissioned Celestial Dancer here.

Enjoy.

. . .and while I'm a bit "on" about commissions, let me mention that I'm back on the "sales trail" and looking for a few more. Please take a minute (and 27 seconds) to watch my video portfolio. If we can work together on anything, feel welcome to be in touch.

Thanks.

video
Click arrow to start video. Run time, 1:27

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

fan palm

There's not much to say here on this rainy day in Cayo Hueso (that's not a complaint, the rain is a good thing) except that
I do enjoy the sight of sculptured plant-life like this.

But fear not, I'll start ranting again tomorrow.

Monday, July 4, 2011

happy 4th. . .

. . .For the 235th time

graphic by art winstanley, © 2011

SIGN THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE

Sunday, July 3, 2011

work-boats & live-aboards

The very first time Key West blipped across my radar screen was back in the mid '80's. I was at the peak of my design career and spending early summers flying out to the week long International Design Conference in Aspen, Colorado.

During one of those trips to Aspen, I met a woman and we spent a few nights together. Over dinner one of those nights, she talked about a subtropical island where she'd spend a week or two to escape her Chicago winters.
That island was Key West.

She went on and on through most of the night, with her melodic voice and so enthusiastically. But I don't remember much of what she was saying.
I was young, she was blonde and beautiful and my attentions were more than a little, distracted.

Later, what I did recall, through the haze of my lust, was "relaxed island life, beautiful tropical sunsets, work-boats & live-aboards". In the years that followed, at least that much of what she said stayed with me.

We made loose plans to meet in Cayo Hueso the following February. But, long story short, I didn't make the trip.
(life's eddys and currents, you know)

All the same, the seed had been sown; and the better part of 20 years later it sprouted. So, with all my northern ambitions satisfied, I headed south.

It's been a dozen years since I made my move. I've never looked back and never saw that blonde beauty from the windy city again. But her enthusiastic stories of "relaxed island life, beautiful tropical sunsets, work-boats & live-aboards" are part of my reality now.

Thank-you Blondie-Blonde, wherever you are!