I shot the reference photo for this painting last summer at a neighborhood gathering, where one of the kids ditched her trusty trike to play with the other kids. It sat in the middle of the road, posed in such a way that it looked proud, loyal. I captured the moment with the idea that I would paint it. The sketch came soon after that, but then the panel sat buried under other more urgent matters until its perfect opportunity presented.
Enter a young couple, Christy and Adam Coppola, cyclists who wanted to do something to help others while enjoying what they do, pedal. They formed a non-profit, Give A Bike, and set out to ride through all 50 states in one year. I first heard about them at High Desert Bicycles, my cycling team’s local bike shop sponsor. One of the owners, John Kibideaux explained that a large portion of the money raised by Give A Bike will benefit World Bicycle Relief, a charity I am quite familiar with. For a couple of years now I have spearheaded a fundraising effort with my team, Big Wheel Racing, to raise money for World Bicycle Relief, and the owners of High Desert Bicycles have always stepped up to generously help.
Tracking the Coppola’s progress is easy through their website, Facebook, and Twitter presence, so I finished the painting and donated it to be auctioned online. All proceeds were donated to Give A Bike, which in turn will help World Bicycle Relief (70%), and Achilles International (30%). They will provide hand cycles to wounded vets.
In total, donations from a raffle and the auction for the painting, Albuquerque contributed $331 to Give A Bike charities! What a fantastic opportunity – I am honored.