Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Topanga




This is what I see outside my airbrush studio. It is the most beautiful bridge that leads to nowhere. Underneath is a creek that rises when it rains. Rat loves to splash around there. I would take some closeups but this odd man recently put up a fence (I don't think that is even legal) he lives above it and was worried that kids would play on it. A long time ago an opera singer had a home on this property but it burned down. There are lots of properties here where the houses burned down and the State bought the properties as fire breaks so I am completely surrounded by State Park. This is great because not only do I live in a State Park but no one will build near me. This is nice because I do live in L.A. but where I live you would not know down the hill is Los Angeles. What's down the hill is actually Santa Monica and Malibu and the other side is the San Fernando Valley. It is perfect for Rat because it is one of the last places where a dog can run free. Although the park technically does not allow dogs on the trails anymore. I have lived in this canyon for 27 years. It is changing and it makes me a little sad, but that's the way it goes. Way too many people use Topanga as a thoroughfare to the Valley so they won't get stuck on the Freeway. It is such a beautiful drive but it is most unpleasant at rushhour now for oldtimers like me. I work so much that I am in my studios most of the time. The Houscapes that I do are difficult because they are extremely personal and because they represent the person who lives in them it is crucial that I put a large amount of time into them. I will post my walk thru the park in the next week.

16 comments:

Janet said...

What a neat place!.We sort of have the same situation.Our farm joins a land management area (forestry service)consisting of hundreds of acres, and we've also been here 27 yrs.

carla said...

When I visited my dear friend Marty in SB a few years ago, we took a drive south and had dinner in a really beautiful restaurant in Topanga Canyon. It was so idyllic! You're lucky to live in such a beautiful place. My location is beautiful too...wooded and remote feeling (although I am only a short drive fromeverything), but it''s too cold here. Our plan is to end up in northern CA within a few years...a dream that keeps us going when the thermometer is in the single digits!

carla said...

I feel like I'm IMing... Yes, it was that place with little lights and seating areas on different levels, if I recall correctly. The name sounds very familiar. There was a little gift shop near the parking area. I should post some pictures of my "natural habitat." It looks especially beuatiful right after a big snowfall, so if the weatherfolks are correct, I might even get a good photo tomorrow! BTW, I added you to my blogroll so I can keep up with your new posts. I love your work:>>>

PaulSketch said...

wow - nothing like a great green view for some art inspiration!
Do you always work with air brush tools? Air brush art always looks so awesome! I've always wanted to try it out, but I make do with the photoshop airbrush haha

andrea said...

Hi Val. Thank you for the sneak peek into your work life and environment. It looks very lush and exotic -- a hothouse for creativity so to speak.

ValGalArt said...

I use the airbrush and I do handwork. I have been working like this since I was 21. It is cute that Andrea said exotic, it is actually pretty rustic here. Topanga is notorius for homes that are built without permits. A lot of the homes were retreats for celebs and artists in the 1920's so the building was done in a bit of a cabiney ramshackle way.

Wee Cottage said...

Wow, what a view. Great for inspiration!

Chuang Shyue Chou said...

Thank you for sharing these photos. They are very inspiring.

I love drawing glades, forest trails. These images are just exquisite. Thank you again.

Chuang Shyue Chou said...

I can't believe this is LA. My impressions of LA is the freeway! The last time I was in LA was 1980.

cream said...

Very idyllic place, Val. And it reflects on your happy paintings and personality!
Fantastic area just a stone's throw from civilisation!

Tanya Nichols said...

I love that card! I have to say inspiration abounds with the view!!!

Jorge Noujaim said...

great place a nd great illustartions on your blog.
Thanks for thr comments on my blog.

Knitting Painter Woman said...

Glad to know there are still places like this in/near Los Angeles. My great uncle had a development and street named for himself (!)in what is now Beverly Hills... unfortunately he was on the "wrong" side of the family for me to have any deeded rights!! Long live architects AND those who build without permits!

scott said...

hey val, what a great place, you have there. you lucked out with the fire break plan as well, by the look of things.
my mum and dad bought a house a long time ago, isolated on the side of a mountain, backing on to a national park, right here in fact. got to love google. as you can see, now it's basically a suburb, and that's a hyatt regency hotel and golf course btween the house and the beach. as well as some shady deal that saw several acres rezoned so that there are now two houses further up the mountain, behind our place.
we are getting it so badly wrong.
I can only imagine how frustrating the traffic must be coming through there to advoid the freeway.
anyhow, not to rant. I better go
love scott

Scott Henderson said...

Nice setting, seems like you may luck out and remain exempt from the urban sprawl. I visited my hometown in Massachusetts last week and drove around my old neighborhoods which these images made me think of - although it no longer looks the same. Someone thought that more condominiums were needed in that town...
The area I live here in Italy still maintains the rustic feel, although there are signs of change - thankfully nothing happens too quickly here:)

Doodlestreet said...

Hahah....it sounds like how they build the homes up in Point Roberts. Many, by our Canadian friends! My cottage was built by a Canadian couple, but I was fortunate as it was one of the better ones on The Point.

I love where you live, dood. I would have never guessed this kind of paradise was down here. I so miss living in the outdoors..you have no idea..well..maybe so since you appreciate nature as I do.

Lovely, beautiful, amazing place you live..truly.