Java Kids in a Rubber Plantation. Oil on wood. I painted this while staying on Nias, Indonesia in August 2010.
Haiti Kids. Oil paint on wood. I went on a SurfExplore trip with photographer John S. Callahan, Holly Beck, Emi Cataldi, Sam Bleakley, and Erwan Simon. We explored the South West Coast of Haiti with local surfer Russell Berhman. These kids lived in a small village close to a wave we surfed. Their whole village came to watch us every time we paddled out. They screamed and cheered for us as it was the first time to see surfing.
Asu Security. Oil on wood. I stayed on Asu Island, in NW Sumatra for 5 months in 2004. The owners of the resort let me stay/eat/boat transfer for free. I just painted whatever I chose, and they got to keep them all. This was based on a photo of one of their worker's sons. He was a funny little fellow who liked to practice exaggerated karate moves and shoot birds with slingshots.
Crystal in a Junkyard. Oil on wood. This is my girlfriend, Crystal. The junkyard is close to our house in rural South Carolina. She is a great subject to paint, but rarely likes the portraits I do of her!
Geisha in the Snow. Oil on wood. I did a series of Geisha paintings because the owners of Telos Island Lodge also opened a Snow lodge in Japan. I was hoping they would purchase them. Fingers crossed!
Pak Hosan. Oil on wood. Anyone who has stayed on land at HT's in the Mentawais has met Pak Hosan. He was the guy who Lance stayed with when he stumbled upon HT's (Lance's Right) in the '90s. Pak still runs the guest house, and loves to spank anyone who dares to play him at Chess. He is the most jolly, laid-back Indonesian that I have ever met. He's a legend. Telos Island Lodge purchased this painting, which is the most luxurious resort in all of Indonesia. It’s ironic because of the contrast between his guesthouse and the five-star place where his portrait hangs.
Mississippi Fred McDowel and Wife. Oil on wood. I love blues music, and I emulate the way the old bluesmen lived their lives. Their goal was to keep playing the music they loved and to make just enough money to make it to the next gig.
Skip James. Oil on wood. Skip is an amazing blues man. This is based on a black and white photo of him just after he came off stage at the Newport Blues Festival in the late '50s. He was one of the bluesmen responsible for the blues revival that influenced many of the 60s rock bands.
Jimmy Cliff in Nias. Oil on wood. Music is really important to me when I travel and paint. My friend turned me on to the movie, "The Harder They Come" starring Jimmy Cliff as Ivan. He was an outlaw in the movie, and I imagined him on the run on Nias Island, Indonesia. Behind him is the view from the tomb of the Queen of South Nias, which is close to Lagundri Bay.
Since 2005, artist and surfer Phil Goodrich has been using oil on wood regularly, expanding his repertoire to include likenesses of obscure Blues musicians. “I like to paint the ones people many have forgotten about. I associate myself with a lot of them because they weren’t concerned with fame or fortune — they just loved the music.” Photo: Hyato Maki