by Life 6

Rick J. Delanty on Painting and Being Active Outdoors

Life lessons can be learned anywhere. For artist Rick J. Delanty, sports and painting have played important roles in creating a unique lifestyle.

His San Clemente Home Studio and Gallery is filled with breathtaking original paintings, large and small. Scenes from the California coast, including some from our beloved Spanish-Village-by-the-Sea, invite collectors to appreciate the power and beauty of nature.

Delanty has been a professional Plein Air and studio painter since 1981. His work has been exhibited six times at the Laguna Festival of Arts and has been included in museum exhibitions and collections including the Laguna Beach Museum of Art, the Oceanside Museum of Art and the Irvine Museum. Since 2008, Delanty has participated in several Plein Air competitions including the Laguna Plein Air Invitational and the Maui Invitational, as well as competitions in Borrego, San Luis Obispo and Sedona. He is an artist member of the California Art Club and a Signature member of several professional societies, including Laguna Plein Air Painters (LPAPA), American Impressionist Society (AIS) and the Salmagundi Club of New York.

Locally, Delanty has contributed his work in various ways. He created the Triton school mascot logo for San Clemente High School where he spent 32 years teaching painting and drawing. He also created the Ocean Festival’s King Neptune, as well as co-designed the SC city flag. He has donated art to city offices on Negocio, at City Hall, the Community Center, Parks and Recreation and Ole Hanson Pool. You can also find his mural design at the San Clemente pier.

Through his art, Delanty’s love for and appreciation of nature is evident. His various paintings of landscapes and seascapes contain colors and contrasts that inspire the viewer to experience nature more personally.

“To create a painting, I think as much about design and message as I do the scene that’s in front of me,” says Delanty. “To communicate with the viewer, I need to create an enhanced effect that conveys my feelings about nature.”

Delanty says his painting is an interaction between his spirit and the spirit that he senses in God’s creation. He believes that the reality we see is only the shadow or reflection of an eternal reality, and all of his work is centered on giving form to that belief.

Delanty paints outdoors because he loves being outdoors. He is also an avid outdoor athlete. He has run 64 marathons to date, including the Boston Marathon (three times) and the New York marathon. His favorite races to run have been Boston, Big Sur, New York, and San Diego. He also completed the Hawaiian International Ironman Triathlon in both 1981 and 1982. He has participated in various long-distance swimming events as well, including the La Jolla Rough Water and Frogman 3-miler, the San Clemente Ocean Festival, and the Oceanside pier swim. His favorite event to date has been the Pier-to-Pier “Quest”, a 23-mile run-swim-run event between San Clemente and Balboa Pier, which annually attracts a number of lifeguards.

There are lessons from being an athlete that have transferred to his daily life, and to his painting. Delanty says heightened awareness of nature and appreciation for life are two significant benefits. He has also gained a greater capacity for perseverance, patience, vision, creativity, self-discipline, and spiritual connection through being active. He says being active has given him a greater appreciation for the privilege it is to be and feel alive.

Whether participating in outdoor sports or painting outdoors, his connection to nature runs deep.

“When we are in nature, we are at one with the universe in which we were created by God to live,” says Delanty. “Every time I run or paint, I feel like I am coming home,”

In early June, Delanty is hosting his 21st Annual Home Studio & Gallery Exhibition and Sale. There will be approximately 60 original paintings of the California coastline on view in his home gallery, including San Clemente and far-off places, along with music and refreshments. All are welcome.

This weekend event is Saturday, June 3 from 12-9 p.m. and Sunday, June 4 from 1-6 p.m. The gallery and studio is located in Forster Ranch. Directions and an online preview may be found at Partial proceeds from the event will benefit Family Assistance Ministries.