Monday, November 3, 2014

More Family Totems

A couple of weeks ago, I was at my parents' house. And having delivered to my dad a few framed pieces (he prefers a particular framing shop in Salt Lake City), I followed him around seeing some of his work and attempted a few more photos. I don't know what he thought I was doing, but I share here some important, family totems even if the first two weren't by him:

St. Francis by Ben Ortega
Lightning Pattern, Navajo Rug
Ben Ortega is now deceased, so I think the one I gave to my Mom a while back has probably increased in value. It's not like you should be placing values or buying and selling in St. Francis carvings. It sounds rather disrespectful to me and missing the whole point of the Santo.

On the right, is one of many Navajo rugs my parents own. Price is more invaluable as they seem to belong with my parents ever since they fell in love with Santa Fe in 1966. We earned some points with them for our nine years of residence there.

And now back to my dad's work, back to the very earliest days of his good art work. The first is a piece he did just after graduating from Brigham Young. I would have been about four months old. It hung in our house for all the years I can remember in my youth. It's good to have a photo of this one:

(c) 1957, Larry K. Vaughn
The next is from BSA Camp Billy Rice near Warm Lake, Idaho. There is (or was) a Forest Service Fire Lookout up on a nearby peak. I think it was Thunderbolt Mountain. At least it seemed that auspicious. We hiked up there when my brother and I were teens. It was a glimpse into an exciting (we thought) if solitary, civil service life.

This painting hung in my maternal grandparents' front room. It was a connection to that home and two families.

(c) Larry K. Vaughn
The next two are even more important. My dad's in-laws kept these in their bedroom so I didn't see them that often. But I was there when they were painted. And I think they gave even more happy memories to my Grandma and Grandpa. My Grandma grew up there on Yellow Creek. My Grandpa herded sheep up there on the Wyoming-Utah border for Deseret Livestock. 

(c) 1961 Larry K. Vaughn, Yellow Creek
The first is a little out of focus. My fault, not my Dad's. It almost adds to the gray clouds and desolate location which happens to be on the Mormon Pioneer Trail with the state line running right through the ranch run by two brothers and their families. My Grandma was a true to life, actual Cowgirl.

(c) 1961 Larry K. Vaughn, The Needles
To connect to some family significance, try these out:

My Great Grandfather, my brother, and I, 1961
Me at Yellow Creek, 2003

Three of my sons and my oldest Grandson, Yellow Creek Ranch, 2009


  1. One of the most treasured items from my parent's home is a painting that your dad did one summer while you were visiting us. That Christmas he somehow snuck it under our tree as a gift.
    I now home teach Adele Gilchrist, who proudly displays his painting of James Island in her dining room.
    His gift has brought joy to many people.

    1. Thanks, Dave!
      The next time you are at Adele's or your Mom's could you take a good digital picture of the paintings, please? I am trying to collect photos of as many as I can. It would be good if I could get them before Thanksgiving as we are going up for his 80th b-day celebration that Saturday.
      Thanks again!
      [and any other friends, relatives who may be reading could help with that as well]

    2. Where would you like them posted? I tried to put one here, but did not see how to put it in the comments.

    3. Blogger is difficult that way. Probably easiest is to email pics directly to me at grant [dot] vaughn [at] gmail [dot] com. :)


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