Tag Archives: Sports Artists John Robertson

LA Rams Quarterback art painting

LA Rams Starting Quarterback Case Keenum

The start of this Los Angeles Rams season looks like will lead off with Case Keenum number 17 at quarterback.  Keenum, has made a career as backup but has worked hard to hold off the inevitable future of Jared Goff, the No. 1 pick in the NFL draft.  Keenum did a good job last year Image Los Angeles Rams quarterback Case Keenum handing football off to running back Todd Gurley painting artfor the LA Rams of taking away Nick Foles job who was later released.

Back when I was a kid my dad used to take me to the LA Rams games in the Los Angeles Coliseum back in the late forties and early fifties.  At the time I remember there were two quarterbacks fighting for starting quarterback position; NormVan Brocklin who signed with the Rams out of the draft  and joined the Rams who already had a star quarterback, Bob Waterfield. So beginning in 1950, the Rams coach Joe Stydahar solved his problem by platooning Waterfield and Van Brocklin.  Later on, In a few more years they brought in Bill Wade.  So I was fortunate to see all of them play in Los Angeles.  Saw other great LA Rams players also – the great end Tom Fears and the fun running back, “Crazy Legs” Hirsh.

While I mentioned the fabulous nickname of “Crazy Legs”  I should also mention my favorite football nickname of all time.  Los Angeles Rams defensive back Dick “Night Train” Lane.   “Night Train” Lane had gotten the nickname after taking the night trains to away games because of his fear of flying.  Lane had the record for most interceptions in an NFL season (14), a record that has stood for over 60 years. He went from an undrafted football player, who worked in a factory but was good enough to be later inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

NFL Rookie of the year Todd Gurley

The other player in the LA Rams painting art is running back Todd Gurley. As the NFL football season starts  The Topps Company announced that Todd Gurley, is the cover athlete for theImage LA Rams quarterback Case Keenum handing football off to running back Todd Gurley painting art Topps NFL HUDDLE® 2017 app.  And we all know why he was selected – because he is the reigning NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year.  That is why.

Gurley had an absolutely great first season and will try to live up to the great Los Angeles Rams running back Eric Dickerson who in his second season ran for over 2,000 yards.  That is almost a “Mission Impossible” but hopefully his offensive line will help him with the goal.

About the  Sports Art painting by sports artists John Robertson

The Case Keenum, Todd Gurley NFL football art painting is to honor these two players, one who has had a great beginning and another who has worked hard in his years to become a starting quarterback.  I hope they both have a great season.  The painting is  4 feet by 6 feet, acrylic on unstretched canvas.

skateboarding painting skateboarder art

Skateboarding

Now I am really going to date myself (as if the photograph of me with the painting does not already do that) by writing about my first experience with skateboarding.   I lived on a hill in a neighborhood of hills and for fun we made coaster wagons or cars and coasted down the hills.image of skateboarding girl leaning on her skateboard on the boardwalk staring at the surf with sports artists John Robertson standing next to large scale painting of the skateboarder art  Some of us would make the steering out of ropes, then extend the ropes and stand in the cars while we coasted.  Lots of crashes into curbs and cars.  But one kid had a sister who would roller skate down the hills.  We didn’t want to be on roller skates (that was a girl thing) so somebody had seen somewhere, where someone put roller skate wheels on a two by four and rode it.  So that is exactly what we did – we nailed metal roller skate wheels to two by fours and started riding them down the hills.

Major Problem With Metal Wheels

What’s the problem?  Well, the first problem was that, idiotically, we were trying to ride a two by four.  We were too stupid to put the wheels on a wider piece of wood.  You have to also remember, there were no trucks for the wheels so the board was difficult to turn.  It was a
straight shot down the hills and speed became a factor – too much of it.   Things got in the way.  Skateboard art of skateboarding girl leaning on her skateboard on the boardwalk staring at the surf with sports artists John Robertson standing next to large scale painting of the skateboarder artManhole covers, dogs, cars parked, moving cars, other kids, etc. (I had a friend that fell in front of a car and got run over – not literally- as they only ran over his arm.  He just stood up and shook it off – not his arm, but the pain).  And after not too many trips down the hills the metal wheels flattened out.  We were going at a speed that warmed up the metal and the rough asphalt streets squared out the wheels – bumpy rides and sudden stops.

Skateboard Wheels Technology Catches Up

Slowly technology caught up to us with the invention of clay wheels.  This was a big improvement. But we were still coasting the hills and if you hit rocks or the manhole covers the clay wheels shattered which led to more scrapes and bruises.

Then came the newest in the evolution of wheels, Polyurethane wheels which were much more tough and resilient, with good traction and better shock absorption than the older metal or ceramic wheels.   There were other things that moved the whole skateboard thing forward; skateboard trucks, loose ball bearings, design of skateboards; the original flat board, kick tail boards, double kick tail board, long board short boards, etc.  Even our Keds got outdated and a whole new design of skateboarding shoes came into existence.

By the time all the changes came in I felt I was too old to skateboard, although I would skateboard in front of the house sometimes.  One of my memories towards the end was when I had been married for a few years and had a couple of small girls.  Some of the boys in the neighborhood knew that I skateboarded and had seen me out front.  A couple of them knocked at the door and my wife opened it up.  One boy said,  “Can Mr. Robertson come out to play?”

Sports Artists John Robertson Painting

skateboard Art Painting is four feet by 8 feet, acrylic on unstretched canvas.

Miami Dolphins Dan Marino

Dan Marino Painting Art

Although Dan Marino was one of the greatest quarterbacks in the NFL he never one a championship.  (But in 1984 he did lead the Miami Dolphins to the Super Bowl, where the club lost to the San Francisco 49ers led Joe Montana win of  38-16).  For example Marino was first rookie to

Image of Dan Marino quarterback for the Miami Dolphins protected by offensive center Tim Ruddy s defensive end Howie Long rushes Dan Marino as he throws a pass.

Image of Dan Marino quarterback for the Miami Dolphins protected by offensive center Tim Ruddy s defensive end Howie Long rushes Dan Marino as he throws a pass.

start at quarterback in the Pro Bowl. That rookie year Marino threw for 20 touchdowns, led the Dolphins to a 12-4 record, and became the NFL’s Rookie of the Year.  That’s not a bad start for a quarterback who had five other quarterbacks in that year’s draft taken before he was drafted.

At the time one of the greatest years any quarterback has had in the NFL was by Dan Marino.  In that 1984 Super Bowl season he threw for 5,084 yards and 48 touchdowns, both single season records at the time, while also setting new NFL marks for completions with 362.  A quote from Dan Marino and his career says it best, ” I just try to be myself, whatever that is. I don’t think about how I’ll be remembered. I just want to be consistent over a long period of time. That’s what the great players do.”

It is always interesting to hear what a quarterback has to say about his coach and how he mayMiami Dolphin painting art Image of Dan Marino quarterback protected by offensive center Tim Ruddy s defensive end Howie Long rushes Dan Marino as he throws a pass. feel, as a quarterback, about his leadership role.  Marino said this about one of his games.  “We’re not running the ball again until we get ahead. Shula was calling the plays, but I told them, ‘I don’t care what he calls. We’re throwing every pass from now until we get the lead.’ To Shula’s credit, he always gave me that option. ”

Miami Dolphins Offensive Center, Tim Ruddy Number 61

Also in the painting is Tim Ruddy a six foot three inch center who was drafted in 1994.  When listing the all time top one hundred players for the Miami Dolphins Tim Ruddy comes out around number thirty -two.  He spent 10 seasons with the Miami Dolphins and started 140 games.

Oakland Raiders Howie Long, Defensive End

The other image in the painting is of Hall of Fame defensive end Howie Long who played in the Super Bowl XVIII with the Los Angeles Raiders in 1984. He was an 8-time Pro Bowler and one-time Defensive Player of the Year in his career.  He recorded 91.5 career sacks and became an NFL sportscaster after retirement.

Sports Art Painting by Sports Artists John Robertson

The painting is three feet by six feet, acrylic on unstretched canvas.

Football Quarterback Vintage

Story of Vintage Football Quarterback

I don’t know much about this vintage football quarterback player that I painted from the past.  I ran across the image and thought it would be fun to paint.  I did some search on Google put could find out anything about him – so I thought I might make up a bit of his history.

Alberte Mortensen – Quarterback

Alberte Mortensen was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1894 to immigrants from Denmark.  The family moved to New Jersey shortly after he was born.  As a baby he had medical complications with his digestive track which led to difficulties in eating anything that was not white.  He only

mage of a vintage football quarterback player throwing a pass wearing old leather football helmet and old football jerseys.

I

ate white bread, white noodles, white rice, drank milk and, of course liked ice cream (vanilla).  Because he was unhealthy and the family lived in poverty the Mortenen’s asked for help from their Norse church which worshipped the old Norse gods of the Viking age – Thor, Odin and Frigg.  The Norse oracle, Völva or “priestess” recommended that they give up Alberte for foster care.

Foster Care

The Mortensen family gave up the four-year-old Alberte to an Irish Catholic family, the Hughes.  The Hughes had immigrated to the United States from Ireland during the potato famine.  Once in his new home he adapted quite nicely to a diet of white potatoes.  His favorite dish was colcannon which became a staple at most of his meals.  It is a mash of potatoes, cabbage or kale and butter or cream, flavored with scallions.

Plays Football

Alberte grew heartily on the diet, eventually played on his high school football team, and because of his athletic ability was recruited to play with the a local football “club”.  Even though he was only sixteen his skills as a football quarterback made him locally famous.  He played for a  “pay Image of vintage quarterback football playing player throwing a pass wearing old leather football helmet and old football jersey.for play” football team which generated a small income for the Hughes family.  Because of his success his biological parents, the Mortensens wanted him back.

The Hughes gave a negative response.  As there is no actual word for “no” in Irish Gaelic, they actually said, “Ní hea,” which literally means, “It is not.”  The Hughes won in a short court battle and Alberte went on to play college football.  He disguised himself as an Indian  and went to Carlisle Indian Industrial School where he played football quarterback with Jim Thorpe, the great all-american.

Alberte, was now known as, Abukcheech, which means mouse.  Hid first season as quarterback at the Indian school he dedicated to his foster Irish mother, Chloe  Hughes.  When Alberte turned twenty-one he requested Irish citizenship to play soccer in Ireland.  At twenty-two he left for Ireland   Upon boarding the boat back to his adopted homeland he said, “I am Irish, I feel Irish, I will play forever in Ireland.”

THE END

Sports Artists John Robertson Vintage Football painting is 4 feet by 7 1/2 feet, acrylic on unstretched canvas.

Painting Surfing Art Artists John Robertson

Surfing

As I live only a couple of blocks from the beach and my studio is even closer, it is only natural I would paint a surfer.  This surfer is standing on the rocks at Ventura, California Surfer’s Point.  This surfing break is only a few hundred yards up the beach from the Ventura Pier and the “C” Ventura California surfer stsnding on the beach holding his surfboard under his arm  facing the waves painting life size art with artists John RobertsonStreet break.  “C” Street is more of an inside break as apposed to the “Point” break.

When did it all start

I first started surfing many, many years ago.  How Long?  Well I do not want to give away my age but when I started surfing there were some guys using redwood planks and wore knit swim suits.  Women still wore bonnets to the beach.  The boards were ten to twelve feet of solid redwood and weighed a hundred pounds.  To get one of those things off the beach was like dragging a dead seal back into the water.   It was like paddling a canoe with a chance of splinters.  I actually started out on the old balsa boards – no splinters and slippery when wet.  We used candle wax for the surface.  By the way – no wet suits either and we surfed year-round.  Living about 6 miles from Malibu it was the natural place to surf.  We sometimes went up to Leo Carrillo and County Line and never went south.  Few surfed the Santa Monica and Venice breaks because – well, just because.   Because Malibu was close and just about the best break anywhere – and few surfers then.  A crowded day was about a dozen guys out.

Body Boarder

Even though I live close to a couple of great breaks I do not surf anymore.  I do get into the ocean regularly, body-boarding, but surfing has lost it’s appeal.  Main reason?  The same as many.  Too many people.  But just north of us is a nice shore break.  A few boards come out but not enough to interfere with the body-boarders.   It is more about just being in the water and not on top of it.  I feel more part of the environment.  And most of the year without a wetsuit.  When the water drops below 60 degrees then that is about the time the wetsuit comes out.  But that is what so great about living in sunny Southern California – living outdoors all year long.

About Sports Artists John Robertson Surfer Painting

The painting is four feet by eight feet, acrylic on unstretched canvas.  It hangs like a tapestry or banner.

Offensive Linemen

Offensive Linemen NFL The “Trucks” of Football

The offensive linemen plays one of three positions, center, guard or tackle, and usually the biggest players on the team.  I can’t think of anything more intimidating in football, or in  most sports, than to have an offensive lineman out in front of a running back.  His job is to makeImage painting art of a NFL Football offensive linemen setting up for a block with sports artists John Robertson in photograph space for the runner.   Visualize a wedge, snow plow train barreling down deep, snow covered railroad tracks.  And with speed and power this huge wedge plow on the front of the iron, diesel engine throws the snow hundreds of feet off the tracks.

Most offensive linemen are just anonymous monsters, part of this wall of other brutes.  But there are some that have stood out in the NFL.  Some had great nicknames like, ” Smash-Mouth” or “Night-Train” or “The Jordon Spreader”.

Green Bay Packers Forrest Gregg

One of my favorites is Forrest Gregg of the old Vince Lombardi, Green Bay Packers.  Lombardi said Gregg was greatest player that he ever coached. As a Packer, Gregg brought back five championships to the Green Bay “Frozen Tundra.” In the twilight of his career, he won Super Bowl VI with the Dallas Cowboys.  Gregg played in a then-record 188 straight games between 1956 and 1971. Gregg made nine trips to the Pro Bowl and seven appearances on the First­-Team All­-Pro list.

Oakland Raiders Gene Upshaw

There was Gene Upshaw, Oakland Raiders and a Hall ­of ­Famer.  He played 15 seasons at guard between 1967 and 1981. Upshaw started 207 out of 217 career games and was named to seven Pro Bowls. Upshaw was also a two­-time Super Bowl champion­­ with rings in 1977 and 1981.

Oakland Raiders Art Shell

Another great Raider offensive linemen was Art Shell.  At his playing size of 6’5″ and 265 pounds, Shell would  drop his hips and use pounding leverage to clear space for running backs or put up a shield and protect his quarterbacks.

Cincinnati Bengals Anthony Muñoz

And who some considered the best offensive lineman of all time is Anthony Muñoz – left tackle, Cincinnati Bengals.  He was the “real deal”  with size, strength, athleticism, and technique.  He played at six feet six inches and weighted two-hundred and seventy-eight pounds. He could create an alleyway that a truck could drive through – or “wall off ” a blitzing linebacker.  Munoz played in nine Pro Bowls between 1976 and 1985 and named lead guard on the NFL’s 75th Anniversary All­-Time Team.

About Sports Artists John Robertson Painting

The Lineman painting is approximately 48 inches by 70 inches, acrylic on unstretched canvas.  (That means no stretcher bars or frame)  It hangs like a tapestry or banner.