Tag: sailing

The Marsh Barge - Traveling the Mississippi River from Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico
    Friday, 04 April 2014 /// Written by Tanner Ballengee

For some reason I thought it would be a good idea to quit my job, move out of my house, leave everything and travel again.

So on August 21, 2013 I pushed a canoe packed full of gear into the headwaters of the Mississippi River in Lake Itasca, Minnesota, along with four of my best friends. Exactly 100 days later, I arrived at a marina near the Gulf of Mexico in a sailboat.

Words & Photos: Tanner Ballengee

For weeks before our departure date I became terribly depressed. I had heard countless warnings and cries from very concerned friends and family members about how dangerous the Mississippi River is, and how many lives it claims each year. Everyone had his or her doubts that we would make it; either we'd give up somewhere down the line, or someone would die.

Hell, I even had my own doubts. Many told me that they didn't want me to go. They were terrified of what might happen (and so was I); yet there was no stopping any of us.

Eventually I had to come to terms with the fact that at least one of us was going to die.

I had to accept that at least one of us was either going to drown, or get killed by the countless predators that haunt the Mississippi (bears, alligators, bull sharks). I was forced to watch my mother cry when we met for dinner, for what she believed would be our last.

But it was a feeling that I'm starting to become comfortable with. There's that certain fear you must embrace when you take that first step out your door. I'd felt the same feelings the day before I flew to Thailand in August 2012. I decided that I wanted to travel because if I didn't, I would destroy myself at home—death by boredom, so to speak. But at the same time living a traveling, inconsistent lifestyle is like signing your own death warrant.

Well, I didn't die.

Three of those friends I started with called it quits around St. Cloud, MN, for various reasons, leaving Conner and I to set out by ourselves again. After over 50 days of paddling, we landed in Pepin, WI, where our trip would take a big turn.

It's an understatement to say that you learn a lot when you travel—about yourself, others, and the world around you.

For example: I learned that I hate canoeing. -->CONTINUE READING



27' Sailboat - Ocean view and other benefits
    Wednesday, 11 December 2013 /// Written by Trippe

People associate sailing with Thurston Howell, think it's incredible expensive and only for the rich, but we think this ad does a job well done with why sailing is amazing and worth every little penny it costs.



Winter Sailing
    Monday, 09 December 2013 /// Written by Trippe

We did a little winter sailing yesterday on the SF Bay, can't stop thinking about it. Lovely 10 knots of wind with a nice genoa up and we were hitting 6 knots of boat speed. Lunch at Angel Island, and it's days like yesterday, miles from the city and enjoying all the quiet and island to ourselves, that reminds us how important having a boat is.

Buy this Santana and join us... or not, we'd rather have it all to ourselves anyway.




Sailor's Report
    Monday, 04 November 2013 /// Written by Trippe

We spent a little time floating about on the San Francisco Bay yesterday, and while out there heard/ saw a couple news worthy bits.

UPDATE 11/6: After much silence, the tech giant fesses up on its connection to the uncommon structure in San Francisco Bay, which it's now proclaiming Google Barge

As reported last week, Google is involved in building a very secretive structure at Hanger 3 on Treasure Island, and within the last week have pulled out their privacy fences which have been there for months. All that seems to be left is the shipping container structure sitting on the the barge. Did the stories come out, and Google broke it all down and hit the road with their secrets in tact? --- There was another Google barge spotted in Portland last week too. Floating data centers to be placed outside of US territory?

Google's floating data centers being built in San Francisco and Portland?

As heard on the VHF at approx 1:30pm, a sailboat found a dead body of a small woman wearing black shorts by the South Tower of the Golden Gate Bridge floating face up. Considering we've heard other boats report jumpers and bodies over the years, and there's a reported 2 jumpers every month, not sure how news worthy it is... Bummer though.



Angelic Island on America's Birthday
    Wednesday, 10 July 2013 /// Written by Trippe

For the 4th we sailed over to Angel Island, spent a few days enjoying the hot Marin air, BBQing it up w/ friends, and watching the fireworks from it... A warm clear evening and you could view both of San Francisco's fireworks and also Sausalito's as well... That is a damn fine island.

Bay Area photographer shits out another photo of the Golden Gate Bridge.

Two boats are better than one for an overnight.

Walk back to the boats and drink more wine.

Best spot to view San Francisco's duel fireworks show.


Seagull on her mooring.



"Augusta" Looking For New Home
    Wednesday, 29 May 2013 /// Written by Trippe

We bought a new boat last weekend and now need to part with our dear Augusta, a '71 Catalina 27 whose provided us with 6.5 years of enjoyment. If interested, check here for photos/ videos and more info.

"Augusta" moored at Angel Island on a beautiful Saturday


High 5s: A Drift
    Thursday, 24 January 2013 /// Written by Trippe

Friends got married, saved some jokers from wrecking their boat on Alcatraz, our Winter Group Show @FFDG, stayed at the incredible beach front cabins at Mt. Tam State Park, and spent time on the water.

Blog in pictorial format

Incredible views at the Mt. Tam cabins

Congrats, Stefan and Jessie!

No motor and no radio when there's no wind during a huge tide? Not a smart move.

Artist Scott Greenwalt and friend @FFDG's Winter Group Show in December



The Clipperton Project - Part 2
    Thursday, 13 September 2012 /// Written by Trippe

This is part 2 of a two part blog. Click here to view part 1.

Bay Area artist and waterman, Martin Machado, was invited to sail with a group of artists and scientists to a far off uninhabited atoll in the middle of the Eastern Pacific. Exotic animals and beautiful tranquil scenes. Check it and dream of similar travels.

(photo: Machado) I saw some footage of the island from the 80's when Jaques Cousteau came here, so I convinced French Tom to bring one of his surfboards. But we couldn't find anywhere that didn't look like it would smash us to bits.

(photo: Beek) Ashore, a tent camp was pitched on the cement foundation of an old base. The island has an insane history involving conflicting nations, pirates, murders, and a whole bunch of marooned people. Its definitely worth looking into if you're a history buff.

These birds were hilarious, totally unafraid of people and not too smart, they would fly into us all the time.

Here's a large paintings I did on paper, rolled up in a tube, and shipped out to Scotland in June. Titled "The Inhabitants of the Waters of Clipperton Atoll"



The Clipperton Project Sets Sail
    Wednesday, 12 September 2012 /// Written by Trippe

Bay Area artist and waterman, Martin Machado, was invited to sail with a group of artists and scientists to a far off uninhabited atoll in the middle of the Eastern Pacific. Exotic animals and beautiful tranquil scenes. Check it and dream of similar travels.


(photo: Naim Rahal) For another five days and nights we sailed basically due south, putting us far offshore as the Mexican coastline juts eastward.

(photo: Machado) Hey what the heck?

(photo: Machado) Ha, oh geez.

(photo: Naim)

(photo: Biller) I don't think they had seen a woman in months, so needless to say Manon took some harassment. Here one guy gave her the gift of a shirt but said she had to switch it with hers. That's about when we asked to be taken back to our boats.



High 5s: Labor Day Sail 30
    Tuesday, 06 September 2011 /// Written by Trippe

Been working 6 days a week since getting back from Brazil. Labor Day Weekend left us with an extra day off. With two days off, we headed onto the San Francisco Bay aboard our 27 foot Catalina Augusta for some sailing, anchoring, beer drinking, sun-getting time relaxing.



High 5s: Installing Then Sailing
    Thursday, 30 June 2011 /// Written by Trippe

Going back in time here through the lens glass. Installing art shows, taking down art shows, hanging out w/ Mel Kadel and Travis Millard, sailboat maneuvers on the San Francisco Bay and other whatnots from the gallery life.



Velux 5 Oceans Sailing Race
    Friday, 18 February 2011 /// Written by Trippe

Velux 5 Oceans is the oldest and toughest solo sailing race in the world and the only American, Brad Van Liew, is in the lead as the fleet approaches Cape Horn in the Southern Ocean (here), the toughest and roughest part of the world to sail.

We know this isn't a sailing site, but damn, it's interesting to follow these guys jammin' around the world toughing it out. This is a rough grueling race and with technology like it is, you get real time updates with photos and video like the one below from American Brad Van Liew.

Thursday's update from The Roaring 40's


High 5s: Men For Others
    Thursday, 20 January 2011 /// Written by Trippe

Been some time since I done up the ol' blog... New Year's sailing, MLK, Horse Races and other whatnots... ~view it

On New Years we spent some time on the San Francisco Bay.



America's Cup in San Francisco 2013
    Monday, 03 January 2011 /// Written by Trippe



High 5s: SF Bay Weekends
    Monday, 13 December 2010 /// Written by Trippe

The last two weekends on the boat were interesting ones. Lots of fog and we overheard the drama unfold after a 28 year old man fell in the water in Richardson Bay on Friday night. He hasn't been seen since.



Hold Fast: the voyage of the S/V Pestilence
    Tuesday, 09 November 2010 /// Written by Trippe

This is a great short on 4 people who spent some time fixing up a sailboat and then sailing it down to the Bahamas. We like it for a couple reasons. One: it helps to justify what we've been saying all along: sailing isn't just a rich guy sport, and two: Randomly, my wife and I bought and now own the 27 foot Catalina in the film the director sailed to Mexico a few years back. --> very small world indeed!

Take note: it takes a second to get into it, but becomes addictive. As one commenter wrote: THIS IS A JEWEL of sailing, low budget videos! If you will survive through the first minute or so with way too much black in editing, you enter an over one hour long story with almost NPR / PBS documentary quality... It reminds me a lot of This American Life and Ira Glass-esque narration.


High 5s: Heaven on Angel Island
    Monday, 27 September 2010 /// Written by Trippe

For our 2nd wedding anniversary we considered flying to Mexico for a few days and do one of those all inclusive cheap airfare & hotel combos where you just sit around a pool all day drinking margaritas. But then we thought we could do the same thing in our own backyard for like 90% cheaper. We took a small portion of our travel money, bought a used dinghy, and relaxed in the sun at Angel Island for 3 days... Extra bonus was the best weather we've had all summer here in San Francisco...

And after the Fecal Face 10 year show, we needed some rest. We swam, hiked, drank beer, BBQ'd, played catch, drank wine, and basically wallowed in the oppressive, yet fantastic, heat around goose, deer and baby raccoons.



High 5s: Hot Day on the Bay
    Friday, 03 September 2010 /// Written by Trippe

Too damn nice out yesterday here in SF to not take the day off. Next week, with our 10 Yr. Anniversary, is going to be busy as hell... So we took a day off and jumped on the boat and into the Bay. Here's a little visual sampling.



High 5s: Our Trip Up the Petaluma River
    Tuesday, 17 August 2010 /// Written by Trippe

As anyone in San Francisco knows, this summer hasn't been normal with chilly fog/ mist/ drizzle and colder than average temperatures. It's been down right bummer-town actually...

In a last minute effort to escape the fog and get into some warmer temps, we took a last minute spur of the moment trip via sailboat up the Petaluma River to it's conclusion (Petaluma)... It got damn hot as we snaked up the narrow river. Got to raise our first draw bridge, ate oysters, drank in a bar with a shit load of dead animal heads and rifles on the wall... Almost got stuck in the mud when our motored died entering the insane chop and breeze leaving the river into San Pablo Bay. In total we spent 18 hours in 2 days traveling by boat and almost didn't make it home.



America's Cup to SF
    Monday, 19 July 2010 /// Written by Trippe

You may or may not care about sailing or sailboat racing, but The America's Cup, which San Francisco is the only US city in contention to host the race in 2013 or 2014, would bring 1.4 billion dollars to the Bay Area economy and generate at least 8,800 jobs... That is 3 times the amount of $$$ that an event like a super bowl would bring... The 159-year-old sailing race ranks behind only the Olympics and soccer's World Cup in terms of spectators and economic activity, said the report from the council, a privately supported public policy group. ~read all 'bout it.


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SF Giants' World Series Trophy & DLX
Wednesday, 04 March 2015 17:21

I'm not sure how many people are lucky enough to have The San Francisco Giants 3 World Series trophies put on display at their work for the company's employees to enjoy during their lunch break, but that's what happened the other day at Deluxe. So great.


SF skateboarding icons Jake Phelps, Mickey Reyes, and Tommy Guerrero with the 3 SF Giants World Series Trophies


Alexis Anne Mackenzie - 2/28
Wednesday, 25 February 2015 10:21

SAN FRANCISCO --- Alexis Anne Mackenzie opens Multiverse at Eleanor Harwood in the Mission on Saturday, Feb 28th. -details



The Death of the Artist—and the Birth of the Creative Entrepreneur
Wednesday, 21 January 2015 10:34

When works of art become commodities and nothing else, when every endeavor becomes “creative” and everybody “a creative,” then art sinks back to craft and artists back to artisans—a word that, in its adjectival form, at least, is newly popular again. Artisanal pickles, artisanal poems: what’s the difference, after all? So “art” itself may disappear: art as Art, that old high thing. Which—unless, like me, you think we need a vessel for our inner life—is nothing much to mourn.


Hard-working artisan, solitary genius, credentialed professional—the image of the artist has changed radically over the centuries. What if the latest model to emerge means the end of art as we have known it? --continue reading


"Six Degrees" @FFDG
Friday, 16 January 2015 09:30

"Six Degrees" opens tonight, Friday Jan 16th (7-10pm) at FFDG in San Francisco. ~Group show featuring: Brett Amory, John Felix Arnold III, Mario Ayala, Mariel Bayona, Ryan Beavers, Jud Bergeron, Chris Burch, Ryan De La Hoz, Martin Machado, Jess Mudgett, Meryl Pataky, Lucien Shapiro, Mike Shine, Minka Sicklinger, Nicomi Nix Turner, and Alex Ziv.


Work by Meryl Pataky


In Wake of Attack, Comix Legend Says Satire Must Stay Offensive
Friday, 09 January 2015 09:59


Ron Turner of Last Gasp

"[Satire] is important because it brings out the flaws we all have and throws them up on the screen of another person," said Turner. “How they react sort of shows how important that really is.” Later, he added, "Charlie took a hit for everybody." -read on


Thursday, 08 January 2015 09:36



SF Bay Area: What Might Have Been
Tuesday, 06 January 2015 09:36


The San Francisco Bay Area is renowned for its tens of thousands of acres of beautiful parks and public open spaces.

What many people don't know is that these lands were almost lost to large-scale development. link


1/5/14 - Going Back
Monday, 05 January 2015 10:49

As we work on our changes, we're leaving Squarespace and coming back to the old server. Updates are en route.

The content that was on the site between May '14 and today is history... Whatever, wasn't interesting anyway. All the good stuff from the last 10 years is here anyway.


Jacob Mcgraw-Mikelson & Rachell Sumpter @Park Life (5/23)
Friday, 23 May 2014 09:22

Opening tonight, Friday May 23rd (7-10pm) at Park Life in the Inner Richmond (220 Clement St) is Again Home Again featuring works from the duo Jacob Mcgraw-Mikelson & Rachell Sumpter who split time living in Sacramento and a tiny island at the top of Pudget Sound with their children.

Jacob Magraw will be showing embroidery pieces on cloth along with painted, gouache works on paper --- Rachell Sumpter paints scenes of colored splendor dropped into scenes of desolate wilderness. ~show details



NYPD told to carry spray paint to cover graffiti
Wednesday, 21 May 2014 10:37

nyc_graffitiNYC --- A new graffiti abatement program put forth by the police commissioner has beat cops carrying cans of spray paint to fill in and cover graffiti artists work in an effort to clean up the city --> Many cops are thinking it's a waste of resources, but we're waiting to see someone make a project of it. Maybe instructions for the cops on where to fill-in?

The NYPD is arming its cops with cans of spray paint and giving them art-class-style lessons to tackle the scourge of urban graffiti, The Post has learned.

Shootings are on the rise across the city, but the directive from Police Headquarters is to hunt down street art and cover it with black, red and white spray paint, sources said... READ ON


Wednesday, 16 June 2010 17:39

Headlands Center Fundraiser -6/4/14
Tuesday, 20 May 2014 07:54

SAN FRANCISCO --- The Headlands Center for the Arts is preparing for their largest fundraiser of the year set to go down on June 4th at SOMArts here in the city. Art auction, food, drinks, live music, etc and all for helping to support a great institution up in the Marin Headlands. ~details

Headlands Center for the Arts provides an unparalleled environment for the creative process and the development of new work and ideas. Through a range of programs for artists and the public, we offer opportunities for reflection, dialogue, and exchange that build understanding and appreciation for the role of art in society.










Alison Blickle @NYC's Kravets Wehby Gallery

Los Angeles based Alison Blickle who showed here in San Francisco at Eleanor Harwood last year (PHOTOS) recently showed new paintings in New York at Kravets Wehby Gallery. Lovely works.

Interview w/ Kevin Earl Taylor

We haven't been featuring many interviews as of late. Let's change that up as we check in with a few local San Francisco artists like Kevin Earl Taylor here whom we studio visited back in 2009 (PHOTOS & VIDEO). It's been awhile, Kevin...

Peter Gronquist @The Shooting Gallery

If you like guns and boobs, head on over to the Shooting Gallery; just don't expect the work to be all cheap ploys and hot chicks. With Make Stuff by Peter Gronquist (Portland) in the main space and Morgan Slade's Snake in the Eagle's Shadow in the project space, there is plenty spectacle to be had, but if you look just beyond it, you might actually get something out of the shows.

Jay Bo at Hamburg's Circle Culture

Berlin based Jay Bo recently held a solo show at Hamburg's Circle Culture featuring some of his most recent paintings. We lvoe his work.


Fifty24SF opened Street Anatomy, a new solo show by Austrian artist Nychos a week ago last Friday night. He's been steadily filling our city with murals over the last year, with one downtown on Geary St. last summer, and new ones both in the Haight and in Oakland within the last few weeks, but it was really great to see his work up close and in such detail.

Gator Skater +video

Nate Milton emailed over this great short Gator Skater which is a follow-up to his Dog Skateboard he emailed to us back in 2011... Any relation to this Gator Skater?

Ferris Plock Online Show Now Online as of April 25th

5 new wonderful large-scale paintings on wood panel are available. visit: www.ffdg.net

ClipODay II: Needles & Pens 11 Years!!

Congrats on our buddies at Needles and Pens on being open and rad for 11 years now. Mission Local did this little short video featuring Breezy giving a little heads up on what Needles and Pens is all about.


In a filmmaker's thinking, we wish more videos were done in this style. Too much editing and music with a lacking in actual content. Just because you can doesn't mean you should.

AJ Fosik in Tokyo at The Hellion Gallery

Matt Wagner recently emailed over some photos from The Hellion Gallery in Tokyo, who recently put together a show with AJ Fosik (Portland) called Beast From a Foreign Land. The gallery gave twelve of Fosik's sculptures to twelve Japanese artists (including Hiro Kurata who is currently showing in our group show Salt the Skies) to paint, burn, or build upon.

Ferris Plock - Online Show, April 25th

FFDG is pleased to announce an exclusive online show with San Francisco based Ferris Plock opening on Friday, April 25th (12pm Pacific Time) featuring 5 new medium sized acrylic paintings on wood.


Backwoods Gallery in Melbourne played host to a huge group exhibition a couple of weeks back, with "Gold Blood, Magic Weirdos" Curated by Melbourne artist Sean Morris. Gold Blood brought together 25 talented painters, illustrators and comic artists from Australia, the US, Singapore, England, France and Spain - and marked the end of the Magic Weirdos trilogy, following shows in Perth in 2012 and London in 2013.

Jeremy Fish at LA's Mark Moore Gallery

San Francisco based Fecal Pal Jeremy Fish opened his latest solo show Hunting Trophies at LA's Mark Moore Gallery last week to massive crowds and cabin walls lined with imagery pertaining to modern conquest and obsession.

John Felix Arnold III on the Road to NYC

Well, John Felix Arnold III is at it again. This time, he and Carolyn LeBourgios packed an entire show into the back of a Prius and drove across the country to install it at Superchief Gallery in NYC. I met with him last week as he told me about the trip over delicious burritos at Taqueria Cancun (which is right across the street from FFDG and serves what I think is the best burrito in the city) as the self proclaimed "Only overweight artist in the game" spilled all the details.

FRENCH in Melbourne

London based illustrator FRENCH recently held a show of new works at the Melbourne based Mild Manners

Henry Gunderson at Ever Gold, SF

Ever Gold opened a new solo show by NYC based Henry Gunderson a couple Saturday nights ago and it was literally packed. So packed I couldn't actually see most of the art - but a big crowd doesn't seem like a problem. I got a good laugh at what I would call the 'cock climbing wall' as it was one of the few pieces I could see over the crowd. I haven't gotten a chance to go back and check it all out again, but I'm definitely going to as the paintings that I could get a peek at were really high quality and intruiguing. You should do the same.

Mario Wagner @Hashimoto

Mario Wagner (Berkeley) opened his new solo show A Glow that Transfers Creativity last Saturday night at Hashimoto Contemporary in San Francisco.

Serge Gay Jr. @Spoke Art

The paintings in the show are each influenced by a musician, ranging from Freddy Mercury, to Madonna, to A Tribe Called Quest and they are so stylistically consistent with each musician's persona that they read as a cohesive body of work with incredible variation. If you told me they were each painted by a different person, I would not hesitate to believe you and it's really great to see a solo show with so much variety. The show is fun, poppy, very well done, and absolutely worth a look and maybe even a listen.

NYCHOS Mural on Ashbury and Haight

NYCHOS completed this great new mural on the corner of Haight and Ashbury in San Francisco on Tuesday. Looks Amazing.

Sun Milk in Vienna

With rising rent in SF and knowing mostly other young artists without capitol, I desired a way to live rent free, have a space to do my craft, and get to see more of the world. Inspired by the many historical artists who have longed similar longings I discovered the beauty of artist residencies. Lilo runs Adhoc Collective in Vienna which not only has a fully equipped artists creative studio, but an indoor halfpipe, and private artist quarters. It was like a modern day castle or skate cathedral. It exists in almost a utopic state, totally free to those that apply and come with a real passion for both art and skateboarding

"How To Lose Yourself Completely" by Bryan Schnelle

I just wanted to share with you a piece I recently finished which took me 4 years to complete. Titled "How To Lose Yourself Completely (The September Issue)", it consists of a copy of the September 2007 issue of Vogue magazine (the issue they made the documentary about) with all faces masked with a sharpie, and everything else entirely whited out. 840 pages of fun. -Bryan Schnelle

Tyler Bewley ~ Recent Works

Some great work from San Francisco based Tyler Bewley.

Kirk Maxson and Alexis Mackenzie at Eleanor Harwood Gallery

While walking our way across San Francisco on Saturday we swung through the opening receptions for Kirk Maxson and Alexis Mackenzie at Eleanor Harwood Gallery in the Mission.

Jeremy Fish Solo Show in Los Angeles

Jeremy Fish opens Hunting Trophies tonight, Saturday April 5th, at the Los Angeles based Mark Moore Gallery. The show features new work from Fish inside the "hunting lodge" where viewers climb inside the head of the hunter and explore the history of all the animals he's killed.

The Albatross and the Shipping Container

Beautiful piece entitled "The Albatross and the Shipping Container", Ink on Paper, Mounted to Panel, 47" Diameter, by San Francisco based Martin Machado now on display at FFDG. Stop in Saturday (1-6pm) to view the group show "Salt the Skies" now running through April 19th. 2277 Mission St. at 19th.

The Marsh Barge - Traveling the Mississippi River from Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico

For some reason I thought it would be a good idea to quit my job, move out of my house, leave everything and travel again. So on August 21, 2013 I pushed a canoe packed full of gear into the headwaters of the Mississippi River in Lake Itasca, Minnesota, along with four of my best friends. Exactly 100 days later, I arrived at a marina near the Gulf of Mexico in a sailboat.

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