West Texas Ghost Town - Orla, Texas

Orla, Texas (west Texas ghost town), Oil on canvas, 24 x 30 inches, 2015

3,750.00 (+tax)


ORLA, TEXAS. Orla is on the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe line, U.S. Highway 285, and Farm Road 652, five miles southeast of Red Bluff in northwestern Reeves County. The name is Spanish for "border" and refers to the countryside around the settlement. Orla was established as a section house on the Pecos River Railroad in 1890. A post office was opened there in 1906. By 1933 Orla reported the post office, a business, and a population of ten. Its population remained at ten until after World War ii but the number of businesses increased to two in 1943. The town grew between the late 1940s and the 1950s, the population to forty and then to sixty, and the number of businesses to three. In the mid-1960s Orla became a rural oil supply center. By the end of the decade its population had reached 250, and it had twelve businesses. From 1970 through 2000 its population was reported at 183, and it had variously anywhere from one to sixteen businesses. In 1990 Orla still supplied equipment for production in nearby Permian Basin oilfields. (from the Texas State Historical Association)


The Tex Randall Project - Limited Edition Prints

I recently discovered that the good folks of Canyon, Texas are in the process of restoring Tex Randall - the 47 ft. tall west Texas cowboy - back to his original glory. Because I love all things Texas, I've decided to offer a limited edition print of a painting that I did of Tex a few years ago. - A portion of the proceeds will be given to help with the restoration. 

The signed & numbered prints are 32 x 24 inches and will be printed on a heavy weight archival paper. For a limited time, the unframed prints are $450.00 each (+tax/shipping) - Framing can be added at an extra cost.

Please contact me via email if you are interested: Thanks!

Photo of Tex Randall from the '60's


Archival print shown in simple black wooden frame

Here's more about Tex Randall from Roadside

In 1959 Tex Randall began life as what was then called "Texas' Biggest Texan" -- and he was. - The 47-foot-tall slouching cowboy was built of cement and steel by William "Harry" Wheeler, a high school shop teacher, for Wheeler's Western Store on US 60. The store -- which despite its name was not owned by Harry Wheeler -- sold Western clothing, so the seven-ton cowboy was outfitted with a real Western-style shirt and an enormous pair of Levi's jeans, courtesy of a local tent and awning shop. The galoot's lanky frame was supported by an ingenious network of steel struts and cables, anchoring him to the ground.

Decades passed. The Texas Dept. of Transportation rerouted US 60 through an underpass, cutting off Wheeler's drive-by traffic and driving the Western Store out of business. Panhandle winds shredded the cowboy's canvas duds. A semi crashed into his left boot, and the cigarette was shot out of his right hand.

Local leaders rallied for a "Save the Cowboy" campaign in 1987. The no-longer-fashionable cigarette was replaced with a spur. The cowboy was given a new face with a mustache, a new set of painted-on clothes -- and a new name, "Tex Randall," in honor of his home in Randall County.

More decades passed. Panhandle winds again ravaged Tex, sandblasting away large portions of his skin and clothes. His fiberglass fingers crumbled. A local businessman bought the cowboy but gave up when he learned it would cost $50,000 to move him. Local boosters mounted an internet fundraising campaign, but the amount needed to save Tex seemed beyond their reach. Time appeared to have run out for the big cowboy.

Then an unlikely hero rode to the rescue: the formerly villainous Texas Dept. of Transportation, which in late 2013 set aside almost $300,000 to turn the land around Tex's boots into a park. Keith Brown, chairman of the Canyon Main Street Program, raised enough money to "re-skin" the statue (Tex even made a cameo appearance in the 2015 Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue). Repairs are scheduled to begin in the summer of 2015, and then the new Tex -- who will look more 1959 than 1987 -- should be unveiled by the end of the year.

Although no longer the "Biggest Texan" - that would be Sam Houston - Tex Randall has lassoed the hearts of his hometown and his namesake state. "He's an icon; he's something we can be proud of," said Keith. And despite Tex's battered appearance, the cowboy has been studied by engineers and found to be perfectly capable of handling yet another makeover. The shop teacher built him right. "He's stood in this part of the country for over 50 years without blowing over," said Keith. "He's not going to."



State Fair Prints On Sale! - 

The State Fair is officially open and limited edition prints of Texas' favorite iconic cowboy are for sale! - The price for a signed & numbered heavy-weight paper or canvas giclee print is 40% off retail through October 18.

40 x 30 inch prints are 450.00 each (+tax/shipping) (Normally these prints are 750.00) - For an additional fee, paper prints can be framed, and canvas prints can be stretched on wooden stretchers with hanger. - 

Shown with simple black wood frame



Jon Flaming at The San Angelo Museum of Fine Art

"The San Angelo Museum of Fine Art to Exhibit Jon Flaming's 'Oil on Canvas' series of 25 large scale paintings dealing with the oil & gas industry!" - Creative Energy: Art about the Texas Energy Boom is an exhibition that opens September 17th and runs through November 8th. - Artists Joe Barrington and Glen Smith will also be exhibited. - 



Panhandle, Texas - Oil on Canvas

Panhandle, Texas, 24 x 36 inches, oil on canvas, 2015