COCOS SERIES: Paintings in Progress

For the last 6 months since I returned from Cocos Island in Costa Rica, I have been working on 5 new paintings all on aluminum metal panels. I anticipate around 20 paintings on both metal and canvas when I complete the series. I am introducing some new metallic colors that inspired me while scuba diving…

COCOS, CHAPTER 5: Return to Manuelita

On the backside of Manuelita during the first dive, I watched a gang of whitetips swarm the reef until I was distracted by a cloud of bigeye jacks approaching us from the channel. As the jacks descended onto the reef, they instantly split off into pairs; one jack remained silver and the other turned black…

COCOS, CHAPTER 4: Treasure Island

“Before we board the pangas, I have to say something important…” Angelo paused for dramatic effect. “You are not allowed to dig for treasure. You won’t find anything if you do, we already tried. Don’t touch anything or carve your name on the rocks or you won’t be allowed to dive again.” I scoffed as…

COCOS, CHAPTER 3: Dirty Rock and Alcyone

Over the next few days, it was hard for me to stop thinking about the magic of Manuelita. All I wanted to do was dive with more tiger sharks. But, the other divers wanted to find hammerhead cleaning stations in the deep waters surrounding the island. Fights erupted over any diver who unknowingly entered a…

COCOS, CHAPTER 2: Tiger Sharks and Boobies

Divemaster Angelo began his briefing for the first dive: “As all of you have probably heard, there were some recent incidents at Manuelita. A diver and a divemaster surfaced away from the rest of the group. When the tiger appeared, the divemaster thought he was doing a good thing by kicking the tiger shark to…

COCOS, CHAPTER 1: Journey to Cocos Island

The immigration agent was engaged in a serious texting conversation as she asked me, “Where are you staying?” I answered, “The Cocos Okeanos Aggressor.” She continued to text in silence. I elaborated, “It’s just a boat at Cocos Island.” She eventually looked up, “Where is that?” I answered, “Um, it’s an island here…hopefully?” I glanced…

FIJI, CHAPTER 4: Sharks, Fire Walkers, and Kava

I woke up to find Jennifer and her luggage had gone. I hopped in the shower and the little black cat was curled up against the outer side of the window. I finished getting ready, and the cat escorted me to the dive shop. There was a giant white board that contained all of the…

FIJI, CHAPTER 3: Cyclone Keni

Barry’s and Joan’s pond bure was smaller than mine, but it had a concrete wall separating their bed from my “guest” bed. I dragged my bed away from the windows and pushed it up against the concrete divider. There was no giant window in the bathroom, which was a plus. Though, I still felt uncomfortable…

FIJI, CHAPTER 2: Between Cyclones

The floor to ceiling shower window that faced my neighbor’s lanai was not so awesome after all. The hotel staff and my neighbors were quite busy each morning, and I kept hopping back and forth in and out of the shower in an attempt to shield my body. Compounded with the fact that everyone knew…

FIJI, CHAPTER 1: The Mists of Beqa

I should have written sooner about Fiji but every time I thought about it, the nausea came. I didn’t think it was possible to have such a strong physical reaction to the mention of a popular Pacific paradise. *In breath* Fiji *out breath*…so far, so good. I’ll try to remember it as best as I…