Sunday, August 4, 2019

I drove across the Bear Mountain Bridge worrying that Summer will have forgotten I was coming to take her photograph and my wife Caroline would once again be right—always confirm appointments that are made well in advance. I was brought up to make and keep appointments, come what may, but that was in the days before people were busy.

Summer Pierre is the cartoonist, illustrator, writer, and teacher who lives across the river from us and who also runs book clubs at Split Rock Books in Cold Spring.

After hearing the announcement from the Google map navigator that "your destination is on your left," I walked through an iron gate and before I had reached the front door it opened and Summer stood there with a welcoming smile. She introduced me to her husband, a tall, broad shouldered man who teaches philosophy up the road at West Point Military Academy, but who is not in the army.

Summer took me up stairs to her studio at the back of the house. She sat down in her chair and we chatted about 
San Francisco where she is from. She had a calm way about her. I asked her about the drawing on the wall behind her.

"The drawing is based on an old found image of a boy and his guitar from the 1940's that was entitled "Little King." I have no idea who this boy was, or where he performed, but evidently was a musician with the stage name Little King. I am very drawn to the vernacular and in particular, vintage images of unknown musicians."

"They have a beauty and a spirit that seems palpable. Music is very important to me and I like imagining the songs that these musicians played. Little King probably played a handful of upbeat country tunes like Hank Williams or maybe even Bob Willis. You can see it in his face--he's ready to give the folks a good time."

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