and artistically inspired. As an Arizona native, I always enjoyed re-reading his “Back Roads of Arizona” book but he did many “Back
Road…” books including travels through New England, Texas, and the Carolinas. Each one filled with quick travel sketches of familiar places rendered in a unique spontaneous style.
His onsite sketches of scenery, animals, and people are constant
reminders that you can see more if you slow your pace and take some time to look carefully at the fine grain of places overlooked.
I corresponded with Earl for a short time and managed to acquire
a couple of his Arizona sketches before he passed away in 2001.
Even his letters were an inspiration with his quick style of writing on a note page that was mostly filled with a large sketch.
his work. He was a prolific illustrator of many books, but his travel
sketches are what inspired me to take a sketch book whenever I travel.
Earl’s web site is at:
Here is a list of Earl Thollander’s “Back Road…” series of books:
Back Roads of California
Back Roads of Washington: 74 Trips on Washington's Scenic
Byways Earl Thollander's San Francisco: 30 Walking Tours from the Embarcadero to the Golden Gate
Back Roads of Oregon
Back Roads of New England
Back Roads of Arizona
Back Roads of the Carolinas
Back Roads of Texas
Back Roads to the California Coast: Scenic Byways and Highways to the Edge of the Golden State
Arizona's Scenic Byways
Sunset Back Roads of California
Barns of California: A collection