Spring is here a bit early this year with daffodils and fruit trees in full bloom. I have been visiting some beautiful West Marin MALT ranches, painting and collecting images for this year’s 15th Annual “Ranches & Rolling Hills” art show. Three years ago I painted a portrait of a sheep named Torpedo on Al Poncia’s ranch in Tomales. He was one of the ‘bum’ lambs raised by Anita, Al Poncia’s mom, in her laundry room. A ‘bum lamb’ is one that is rejected by the mother ewe and therefore has either be hand fed or attached to another ewe. He became very tame and for a long time loved people more than his own kind. A couple of weeks ago I made a visit to the ranch and Torpedo was grazing out in the field. When I called his name, he came ambling over to the car and almost hopped in to see what I had in my cooler. I knew he liked apple, so I quickly pulled one out and cut off little pieces to give him. Torpedo loved it and soon had eaten the whole apple. He scratched my leg, just like a dog, begging for more. What a character! I gave him some good back scratches, which he gladly accepted, before he ambled off into the pasture with his flock.
I decided I had to paint another portrait of this friendly guy, and so he will once again make an appearance at the “Ranches & Rolling Hills” Art show to be held in Nicasio on May 19th and 20th, 2012. Make sure to mark your calendars and come out West to see a great show featuring over 40 well known California artists’ works of art. Fifty percent of the art sales will go to benefit Marin Agricultural Land Trust so that they can enable Marin ranchers to continue working their land. The event is free to the public. Please visit “Ranches & Rolling Hills Art Show” for more information about this event. Hope to see you there….