A landscape painter’s marathon: 77 canvases, in 77 Oklahoma counties, in 77 days

NORMAN, Okla. -- He started in early September.

Landscape painter Tim Kenney used to be in marketing and advertising so the idea of creating a landscape somewhere in every county in the state (that's 77), and doing all that in 77 days, came naturally.

"I like to say that I'm an old man but a young painter," he quips.

Three years ago, he did another project kind of like this, 50 paintings in 50 states in 50 days.

Tim continues, "Everything I did on this trip was stuff I don't ordinarily do."

For the past 2 and a half months, this time, he stuck closer to home, driving to places in Texas County west of Guymon, or choosing a kind of out-of-the-way spot east of Nowata, Oklahoma.

He stopped at the Bergen Ranch in Johnston County, caught Little Niagra near Sulphur on a colorful day, and Walnut Creek near Blanchard, Oklahoma, too.

"I use lots of colors," says Kinney. "When I see brown, I use purple. When I see trees, I see orange. You know?"

Kenney finally came full circle on a bright Sunday afternoon in Norman at one of the city's busiest intersections.

A prospective buyer asked him to render a bit of Norman's past.

Some people called it Bullet Hill.

Others called in Mt. Williams.

Former Norman Transcript editor, Andy Rieger always knew he was home when he saw the dirt hill created for Navy target practice during World War II.

"There were six kids in our family" recalls Rieger. "We'd all be packed in the station wagon."

Artist Kenney remembers going on a first date there with the girl he would eventually marry.

Kinney recalls, "We went up with two friends, Gene Volker and Dennis Ingerman, and we flew kites."

Tim isn't the kind of artist who takes great care with tiny brush strokes.

It's all pallet knife and thick paint with him, and, for this painting, memory.

Tim says, "It's completely different but I can envision it."

Over 77 days, he carried paints and canvas.

He took some pictures, but all his best memories came back in full color.

"That's just my style," he says. "I'm an abstract expressionist and a colorist too."

If you're interested in following Tim Kenney's 77 day odyssey across the state, he has videos and paintings on display at Tim Kenney Art on Facebook.

20% of sale proceeds are promised to the Nicole Jarvis Parkinson Research Foundation.