Oahu

Close your eyes and think about Hawaii...what do you see? The soft white sand of Lanikai Beach? Intrepid surfers taming the waves along the North Shore? Maybe you see your name written on Giovanni's Shrimp Truck?

I like to think back to the different kinds of sand you can find along the coast of Oahu. Growing up in Virginia I would always save a little sand from each beach I visited along the east coast (including many trips to Ana Maria Island on the gulf coast of Florida). Sometimes I would put sand in a water bottle, other times I'd get fancy and put it in a Starbucks frappuccino bottle. 

Looking at sand from different beaches is like looking at the different terrain of a vineyard. If you've ever visited Nickel & Nickel in Napa Valley, CA they have an entire wall of clear acrylic boxes containing soil from each of their vineyard blocks and you can clearly see why a cabernet sauvignon from Oakville (valley floor in south Napa) would taste different than a cabernet sauvignon from Diamond Mountain (eastern mountain range of Napa). Maybe it's the inner engineer in me but it's incredibly fascinating to understand more about how climate and topography can influence how a particular wine varietal tastes or how sand from different beaches on the same island can have such varied characteristics.

 Coarse sand from Waimea Bay

Coarse sand from Waimea Bay

My first trip to a new place always involves a lot of exploration (usually on the first day) and my prior trip to Oahu in May 2015 was no exception. Mason and I spent an entire day exploring all the different beaches on Oahu (Lanikai, Waimea Bay, Sunset Beach, Hanauma, Banzai Pipeline, Laie Beach Park) and the sand was amazing. Every beach had a different color, coarseness, and granularity. Waikiki beach (south east Oahu) was powdery soft where as Waimea Bay (north shore) had way more coarseness. The sand at Lanikai (eastern side of Oahu) was super fine and light in color and the sand at Laie Beach Park (north east shore) was jagged and dark.

 Almost to the summit of Diamondhead

Almost to the summit of Diamondhead

For me its balmy airs are always blowing, its summer seas flashing in the sun; the pulsing of its surfbeat is in my ear; I can see its garland crags, its leaping cascades, its plumy palms drowsing by the shore, its remote summits floating like islands above the cloud wrack; I can feel the spirit of its woodland solitudes, I can hear the plash of its brooks; in my nostrils still lives the breath of flowers that perished twenty years ago.
— Mark Twain

So why am I writing about Hawaii? Well...I'm headed back to Oahu this Saturday and this time I'm prepared to work on lots of art while I'm there. I'll be traveling with 30 sheets of Strathmore acrylic paper, my trusty paintbrushes and I'll buy some paint and supplies at Hawaiian Graphics in Honolulu shortly after I land.

I'm not sure how much hiking I'll be doing on this trip but I do know there will be multiple trips to my favorite place to eat, Ono Seafood, so I can eat all of the poke! Got a favorite place on Oahu that you think I should check out? Send me an email: hi at lauraschulerstudio dot com or a direct message on Instagram @lauraschulerstudio.

 Lazy late afternoon on Waikiki Beach

Lazy late afternoon on Waikiki Beach