Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Christmas Lights

This outlandish display is located at 5651 Garden Grove Circle just off Howell Branch Road East of 436. When I arrived to sketch the sun was just beginning to set. It was a beautiful warm day. As soon as I started to sketch, the owner of the home behind me asked, "Are you a surveyor?" I laughed and explained I was an artist. I had about half an hour of daylight which I used to sketch in the rough outlines of the composition. There was a couple working adding more lights and lawn ornaments while I sketched. The woman finally had to see what I was up to. Her name was Betty and her husband's name was Rob Peterson. They have been putting up this display for the past 18 years. "Of course it started on a much smaller scale and grew over the years." said Betty.

When darkness settled in, Rob was busy pounding in "No Parking signs on his neighbors lawn. Then he bought out orange traffic cones. It turns out he has a traffic pattern well thought out in advance which keeps cars moving in a counter clockwise flow around the circular court which avoids any problems. The lights flickered on in large chunks until the display was blinding. Cars kept arriving and children and adults piled out to get a close up view of the display. I should have counted all the Santa's that were on the lawn. There were at least 6 Santa's riding on the Ferris wheel alone. Christmas music played softly in the background.

When I packed up and left I was shocked to find that many of the neighbors had played at "keeping up with the Jones's." One lawn was just as outlandish as the next. A garage was open and a small town was crafted inside . The next house specialized in lawn inflatables. I haven't done anything with my house yet. I might light a single candle and put it in my front window on Christmas Eve.

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at


Bob Mrotek said...

I had to do a "double-take". At first glance I thought this was a photo. How did you get those bright electric-light colors? I love it!

PM said...

This is one of my all time favorites.

Anonymous said...

Dear Thor,
Don't be such an old Grinch. These people who love to decorate do it so the rest of us can stay on the couch. We follow your sketches daily and especially like the ones including news of Terry. Happy New Year to you both from San Diego, Barbara and Glen Deardorff, Parents of Debbie Andreen

Sultana said...

Wow, wow, wow! I was able to see this light display this year and you perfectly captured its essence. What an amazing drawing! Happy Holidays to you and Terry!

Thor said...

This is the last drawing done on my digital tablet before it died.