Painting Story WHY-LAND

Painting Story WHY-LAND

This painting was created in 1997 back when I was still working out of my garage in San Clemente, California.

It was inspired by the over-and-under water  paintings in Wyland Galleries.

My paintings always get named after they are finished.

When I was putting the last bit of color on this one, my girlfriend at the time, Maria, looked at it and said, “Let’s call it WHY-LAND“.

Before I came to California, I lived on the North Shore of Oahu painting surfboards

I was flat broke and it was hard living there because not many people were friendly to me.  It can be lonely on the North Shore.

I spent a lot time waiting for the bus after painting surfboards all day at Barnfield’s.  The bus stop was right in front of Wyland Galleries, so I would wander in to in to check out all of the cool art.  Wyland himself was there every so often and he was always very nice to me even though I was always covered in paint and mud.  I’ve never forgotten that.

A few years later I moved to San Clemente.  After my art exploded onto Lost surfboards with Matt Biolis, he asked if I could to do some tee shirt designs for them that would match the surfboard art. Matt is very good at seeing potential in people and he must have seen it in me. I started painting on canvas with the paint pens for the first time.

This painting represents the inspiration from my days visiting Wyland Galleries and the confidence that my friend Matt had in me.  It was painted with the same markers that I used on the surfboards, a technique that I still use today.

Now, I see Wyland every once and a while and we talk about art and Business.  I think it was this painting that put me on his radar. I have no idea if he remembers me as that kid in his Gallery,  or if he realizes that his simple kindness and beautiful art inspired a kid to get to where he was going.

This painting is one of the few I’ve kept for myself, but finally decided to let it go out into the collection of someone who will appreciate it.  It’s in my online store, here.

Life is Good – Drew

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  • Beverly Butron
    Posted at 01:03h, 13 May

    You have a very nice painting! I love it.

  • Katana Barnett
    Posted at 04:20h, 10 March

    That’s so wonderful you still have this artwork with such a story attached to it. I find the story behind a work is more memorable to me than the time I spent painting it and there are a few pieces I’ve sold that meant more to me than I got for them. Value!

  • Archan Mehta
    Posted at 00:13h, 24 February


    What a moving story: it touched my heart. It really did. You have a way with words. You have the ability to describe your life in a simple and beautiful way: it is elegant.

    I feel happy that life is good for you now. And that you are no longer broke and lonely. You have Maria and a successful art business. That’s just great about your life.

    You deserve the best. Your struggles made me wipe away a few tears from my eyes. Such an interesting life. You relied on the kindness of strangers. Later on, such strangers can turn into your best friends. My best wishes are always with you and your fab family . Cheers.

  • Tweets that mention Painting Story WHY-LAND | Drew Brophy - Surf Lifestyle Artist --
    Posted at 18:19h, 23 February

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Maria Brophy, Ready To Go i.t.. Ready To Go i.t. said: Painting Story WHY-LAND | Drew Brophy – Surf Lifestyle Artist […]

  • Tweets that mention Painting Story WHY-LAND | Drew Brophy - Surf Lifestyle Artist --
    Posted at 09:57h, 23 February

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Maria Brophy, STEELCITYARTIST, Drew Brophy, Paul Carter, Son of the Sea, Inc. and others. Son of the Sea, Inc. said: The Backstory of a painting called Why-Land (Wyland) by @drewbrophy "Living on the North Shore can be lonely" #Surf #art […]

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