Archive for June, 2013

FF: The replica Antique Sail ship scrimshaw box from Early Home Décor

FFSCRIMThis week I present a few items with a nautical motif – classic sailing vessels of the high seas. First up is this replica Antique Sail ship scrimshaw box from Early Home Décor.

About the replica Antique Sail ship scrimshaw box from Early Home Décor: “Antique replica made with white bone over wood. The lid is etched with the iconic image of a sailship. The box has antiqued brass hinges and latch. The interior is lined with felt. Scrimshaw is said to be one of the earliest forms of American art done by American whalers while at sea.”

See all the cool replica products of Early Home Décor here.

FF: The Ship Pillow from Ortolan Organic

FFSPMoving on with our sailing ship theme this week…

…oOn the indulgent side, there is this (pricey) Ship Pillow from the fine folks of Ortolan Organic.

About the Ship Pillow from Ortolan Organic:

“White illustration on Navy canvas; Shell: Organic cotton canvas; Measures 17″ x17”; Fill: Fair Trade Kapok; Hand printed and sewn in New York City.”

See all the great products of Ortolan Organic here.

FF: The Richard E Bishop America’s Cup Decanter Set from Tuckernuck


Finally, what is a Friday Finds post without a bourbon-related Find? I have been on a quest to find vintage and/or interesting decanters this summer, and the Richard E. Bishop America’s Cup Decanter Set from Tuckernuck is definitely a contender.

About the Richard E Bishop America’s Cup Decanter Set from Tuckernuck: “First produced in 1932 glassware featuring the art of Richard E Bishop continues to be a tradition for the sporting gentleman and collector. A nautical favorite, the colored etchings featured a cobalt medallion with high resolution line art of the yacht “AMERICA,” winner of the first America’s Cup race.”

See all the great products of Tuckernuck here.

OTPSI love everything about the folks at the Old Try, a small letterpress print shop based outside of Boston but has a distinctly southern charm.

About Old Try: “We’re a couple from Alabama and North Carolina who moved to Boston back in 2007. We miss the South. But aren’t quite ready to move back there yet. And much like other Southerners who have pangs of being away from home (Faulkner, Morris and Blount Jr. all come to mind), we have a similar longing for it. One that we find is often better when we’ve been away for a spell. Faulkner said to write what you know. Well, as a couple in the cold north, we’re going to do one different: we’re going to design what we know. We’re here to make things that connect people to places. Right now those things are mainly letterpress posters, printed on old machines with moveable type and wood blocks, just like what would have been used a hundred years ago. Later those things might be other things. Who knows where this will lead us? Whatever the case, it’s going to be Southern. Because we are. Even when we aren’t. Here’s to taking a chance and seeing where it takes us. Here’s to the Old Try.”

Old Try prints posters (and other items) that pay homage to the American South, items like, Down Home, honoring the great State of North Carolina: “A toast for North Carolina adopted by the NC General Assembly, 1957. ‘Here’s to the land of the long leaf pine, the summer land where the sun doth shine, where the weak grow strong and the strong grow great, here’s to Down Home, the Old North State!’”

Browse all the great offering of Old Try here.

Peruse the Old Try blog here.

DPToday’s book is something of a personal triumph for me, as I have finally read it after having it in my Kindle queue for a couple of years. I am very pleased to have finally tackled Desperate Passage: The Donner Party’s Perilous Journey West by Ethan Rarick, a harrowing, yet compelling account of the infamous Donner Party’s journey west.

I, like most people, had a general knowledge of what the Donner Party was all about and what they endured, but in his book, Desperate Passage, Mr. Rarick fills in the details and tell the entire story that not only illuminates the perils the Donner family faced, but in general how difficult it was for pioneers to migrate to the west in the mid-19th century.

About Desperate Passage: The Donner Party’s Perilous Journey West by Ethan Rarick: “In late October 1846, the last wagon train of that year’s westward migration stopped overnight before resuming its arduous climb over the Sierra Nevada Mountains, unaware that a fearsome storm was gathering force. After months of grueling travel, the 81 men, women and children would be trapped for a brutal winter with little food and only primitive shelter. The conclusion is known: by spring of the next year, the Donner Party was synonymous with the most harrowing extremes of human survival. But until now, the full story of what happened–and what it tells us about human nature and about America’s westward expansion–remained shrouded in myth. Drawing on fresh archeological evidence, recent research on topics ranging from survival rates to snowfall totals, and heartbreaking letters and diaries made public by descendants a century-and-a-half after the tragedy, Ethan Rarick offers an intimate portrait of the Donner party and their unimaginable ordeal: a mother who must divide her family, a little girl who shines with courage, a devoted wife who refuses to abandon her husband, a man who risks his life merely to keep his word.”

In Desperate Passage, we read the personal stories of those involved in the doomed trip of the Donner Party. As a result, we get to know the players and their personal stories that allows us to look beyond the macabre and form a better understanding of the brink of human desperation.

I really enjoyed this book and have a much better understanding of this event in history. I also have a much better appreciation for what people in our past had to face in their yearning for a better life. I for one will never complain again that there is no steamed broccoli on the local Chinese buffet.

Desperate Passage: The Donner Party’s Perilous Journey West by Ethan Rarick is available from Amazon and other fine booksellers.

As you know, I spend a lot of time taking pictures of other people’s bicycles.  I rarely take pictures of my own bikes, as I feel that the result would be a contrived picture that would make me cringe every time I see it.

However, with my main bike (the overly enhance mountain bike which is great for the back roads of NH) in the shop undergoing a major overall, I have decided to take my new cruiser out for a few spins.  While I was adjusting the seats and making it ready for a ride yesterday, I realized how photogenic my new bike was and was inspired to take her picture up against the back of the barn.


FCVAIt is looking like Nashville is the destination for my next domestic vacation (after my annual trip to Chicago next week), as I have featured a few area attractions in my recent travel posts.

Today, I add another reason why a trip to Nashville makes sense right now: the Sensuous Steel: Art Deco Automobiles exhibition at the Frist Center for the Visual Arts.

About the exhibition: Sensuous Steel: Art Deco Automobiles is an exhibition of Art Deco automobiles from some of the most renowned car collections in the United States. Inspired by the Frist Center’s historic Art Deco building, this exhibition will feature spectacular automobiles and motorcycles from the 1930s and ‘40s that exemplify the classic elegance, luxurious materials, and iconography of motion that characterizes vehicles influenced by the Art Deco style. Fascination with automobiles transcends age, gender, and environment. While today automotive manufacturers often strive for economy and efficiency, there was a time when elegance reigned. Influenced by the Art Deco movement that began in Paris in the early 1920s and propelled to prominence with the success of the International Exposition of Modern Decorative and Industrial Arts in 1925, automakers embraced the sleek new streamlined forms and aircraft-inspired materials, creating memorable automobiles that still thrill all who see them.”

I love the art deco style and the cars featured in this exhibition are some of the best representations of that amazing era – rolling works of art that beg to be seen and admired.

Sensuous Steel: Art Deco Automobiles continues at Nashville’s Frist Center through September 15, 2013.

Learn more about the First Center for the Visual Arts here.

AFBOK, I am still bathing in the glow of the great Arts Fest Beverly this past Saturday in Beverly, MA. As I mentioned before it was the first major show that I have done featuring my photography and assemblages.

I am pleased to say that it was a great fair and I managed to sell a little bit of everything. I sold a few large prints of my pictures, several smaller matted photographs, a bunch of notecards and a couple of my assemblages – which was particularly exciting for me as they are a true expression of my artistic sensibility.

The best part of the day was meeting people (and seeing old friends) and talking about my work and my passion. It was also great sharing the day with other artist and getting unqualified support and encouragement from them as they heard it was my first show.

I look forward to more festivals – so watch this space for what comes next.

In the meantime, if you picked up my card on Saturday in Beverly and have a question about my work, a comment, or anything else – please comment here or send me an email and I will get right back to you ( Also, you can find us on Facebook.

In the meantime, check out my artist statement and a small gallery of some of my photos here.

Here’s a gallery of some shots of Arts Fest Beverly – Saturday June 15, 2013:

BBSI love this quick and easy recipe for Broccoli Soup from Good Housekeeping magazine.

This recipe is so simple and the end result is describe as:

“High in potassium, calcium, vitamin C and vitamin K, this broccoli soup will give you a health boost and tastes delicious.”

This is definitely a healthy recipe – just broccoli and a simple chicken stock and a few spices. But it is delicious and filling and helps you stay healthy with a high level of vitamin C.

By the way, who says you can’t eat hot soup in the summer – I do and it is great!

Find the Broccoli Boost Soup recipe from Good Housekeeping here.

Visit Good Housekeeping magazine online here.

Umbria.B.2011First off, if you are new to Lost Cowboy because we met or you picked up my card at Arts Fest Beverly – WELCOME! Please leave a comment here or send me an email ( if you have any questions or comments about Arts Fest or my work.

Second, I had a great time at Arts Fest Beverly yesterday. It was great getting out in the bright sunshine, showing my art and meeting new people and old friends.

I took a ton of pictures and have many stories to share, which I will do in the coming days. In the meantime I am taking the day off (the arts show took a ton out of me) and I am off with the family to catch a baseball game with my dad. After all, what says Fathers’ Day more than sharing a game with the old man?

So check back here later for more about yesterday’s Arts Fest and more about my art and the little world I have curated here.



AFBWell, today I am at Arts Fest Beverly in Beverly, MA – the first major exhibition of my artwork

Arts Fest Beverly is my first juried show where my photography, and limited assemblages, will be on display and for sale to the public.

If you are in the greater Boston area and are looking for a nice day trip, Arts Fest Beverly is a great place to start and then spend the rest of the day exploring glorious Cape Ann.

If you are not able to stop by, no worries, you can read all about it here next week.

See you at the fair!

Stop by Arts Fest Beverly, and the companion Food Fest, and look for me.

Check out my artist statement here.

Learn more about Arts Fest Beverly here.