Exciting Things Brewing in 2016

cycling art print

Last Saturday, after a fun, sunny, late January ride on the Ridgeline trail in the Tortolita Mountains (this is Tucson after all), Rudi and I had the pleasure of stopping by Catalina Brewing Company and visiting with Hank and Brian. The brewery is not open yet, but they plan to open later in February, i.e. this month. What a great place! Cyclists are going to love the decor, the atmosphere, and the brew. Hank and Brian have gone to great lengths for you to discover cycling items everywhere you look, e.g. the epoxied counter with all sorts of bike parts entombed within, shelves supported by cut bike rims, a bike route sign, and so much more. What more could a cycling enthusiast ask for? Beer. Glorious beer.

Bike stuff all around + Beer = Fun.

Part of our excitement, at Rudi Cycling Art, is that Hank and Brian want Rudi’s images to be a significant part of what they are hanging on the walls at Catalina Brewing Company. What a great gesture by Hank and Brian. With the allure of empty walls, we’ve been off making our plans and hoping to break some new ground along the way. This is an opportunity to show Rudi’s work, up close and personal, to a larger audience. I’ve always thought that when you are seeing an image on the internet, that it’s difficult to imagine what it would look like framed and on your wall. But if you see it at a street fair (or maybe a brewery), there’s a better connection. The Brewery will also act as a place we can experiment and learn, so that we can offer all of you more items on our Rudi Cycling Art site.

So if you wish, keep some tabs on Catalina Brewing Company to find out when they are opening or having events. All you Facers can look them up by name on Facebook. And start to think about an old friend you don’t see much anymore and how you can entice them to come have a beer with you at this neat, new place.

A Fat Bike Sunrise

Fat Bike Sunrise

This recent work captures an early morning sunrise while riding a fat bike in Tucson’s Rillito River – which is dry most of the year. As are many of the “waterways” around Tucson.

I had the chance to borrow a “Fatback” bike for an extended period of time and my main word for the fat bike experience is FUN. A whole new world opens up with this type of bike. I felt like a young desert rat kid again – roaming the washes and dry river beds. Not only roaming, but having that feeling of exploration and freedom. Contours and vegetation vary widely in ways you never imagined while the miles pass. At one time almost barren and later almost too full of bushes and trees to find a way through. Follow the water; find the sand. Let your instincts show you the way.

I was so drawn in, that I never really fully thought about all of the things that it was freeing me from: traffic lights, cars, noise, straight lines, paved roads, trails to be followed, defined routes, routines, schedules, and time itself. Suddenly this ride was not about a route. Not about riding fast… just about riding. Riding this way. Deciding which way to turn when we got there. Not knowing how far we would go or when we would stop.



Telluride art print

Last Thursday, when Jay and I headed out of Tucson to meet up with a community of bluegrass festival friends, I was mostly looking forward to the mountain bike riding. I’d never been to Telluride, so this was an adventure into an unknown for me. Jay had filled me in a bit about the people and the environs, but even with that knowledge, there was a lot to learn and experience.

There’s a truth about the company you keep, and the bluegrass group that Jay and Lori are part of have a shared soul of music and nature full of love and creativity. Even those who were absent were still so much a part of this event.

We came to ride – or that’s what I thought. I know what happened is much larger. It’s hard thinking about Telluride without feeling tears well up in my eyes.

It’s impossible to describe how fertile this experience was. It’s like they say “you had to be there.” The best I can do is share some of what I painted and drew in Telluride to give a feel of our time there. The view might be the same but then nothing ever stays where it is. The clouds, sun and earth are all in motion.

I know the origin of the universe is thirteen something light years away, but for this weekend, it felt like it was right here.

Here’s to you and all your “Tellurides.”

first veiw of Ingram falls

breakfast view

black pencil

Ingram painting1

Ingram painting 2

Wednesday morning ingram falls




Rudi and Jay

More Giro Paintings

Giro d'Italia cycling print

Getting drawn into an event where the challenges, excitement and the emotion get compressed into a brief moment is one of the pleasures of following sport. The characters are transformed from ordinary to mythic – if only for a moment. It is a spectacle.

If I was at the Giro, I doubt I could do much drawing while riding on the back of a motorcycle trying to stay in front of a field of riders going an average of over 40 km per hour. So I’ve found my own way of getting close to the race, I watch the live event on a computer screen. Then, I work with pen & paper and a camera, switching between these tools and following the race. As the race goes on, I take as many as 100 pictures and create a couple handfuls of sketches. Since I’m taking a picture of a computer screen, there are new levels of cropping and distortion added to my own point of view.

gruppo maglia rosa 2015

With this process, the picture quality, perspective, and content all give me plenty of bonus surprises.

One of my favorite pictures from this Giro has something that is at the edge of perception within the picture. And then I began throwing paint at it. The picture below shows a preliminary sketch of this. What I found while doing this image was the barest feeling of a rider and the great big wings of green behind him. Riding and flying. I can feel that in my bones. It happens every once in a while and it is an unearthly feeling. This image seems to hold that for me. I can see it in my head, without even looking at it.

winged rider giro 2015


Have a great weekend. Enjoy.

Rudi and Jay.


PS: We’re looking forward to Sir Bradley Wiggins hour ride this weekend. Here’s a prediction. 54.1 km in one hour.

Stage 16 of the Giro d’Italia

Contador vs Astana

The first of a series of paintings features Fabio Aru. He was riding to the finish and I was drawn to the shape of his face against the cool colors that surround him.


This next painting, from a helicopter’s point of view, shows the Mortirolo climb. It is a switchbacking road against the lush green of the mountain forest. The riders were going through screaming crowds, but from a distance it is just a landscape with a road flowing through it.


I love the pink jersey. It’s a great excuse to make a pink on my pallet. And getting to use pink…. That’s one of the reasons I love watching the Giro d’Italia.


And the last one. Pink again. And pink against grey and Astana blue. And crazy Tinkoff yellow and blue.

Contador vs Astana
Contador vs Astana





Welcome to Rudi Cycling Art.

Here it begins. A website that features paintings about cycling and a bit more.

We would like to acknowledge some wonderful friends who helped us to make this happen. People who were very generous with their time and expertise. Jeff Guerrero for his help with the rabbit logo. Jon Shouse for sharing his knowledge of printing. Stephen Witt-Thompson for helping ensure that our site is safe and secure. Dejay Birtch for ideas and his wicked promotional skills. And Michael Valenti (www.MichaelValenti.com) who has a great website and answered all of our e-commerce questions. Plus the scores of supportive friends, cyclists, art lovers, and all around good people who have voiced their support of Rudi’s work over the years.

Rudi and Jay