This is my “encore career”. After working 35 years in technology, the tragedy of 911 and a significant health scare, I began thinking of my legacy. Would it be developing a high tech product, or new marketing campaign? Probably not. Both of those careers create ephemeral results. I wanted more. I also saw the world change, from the optimism and exciting changes in the 60’s, to the greed and paranoia of the post 911 world. People need escapes. One of the highest complements collectors give is “I feel like I’ve been to that place, I’m taken there”. That’s my motivation.
How I got here
The creation of art is considered “mysterious”, at least in American culture. I was struck on a trip to Chile in the ’90’s, how expressive the Latin American culture was. Walking through a park, there were children drawing with colored chalk on the sidewalk, young adults sketching, and musicians playing and singing. It seemed to me this culture was not intimidated by art. I think many people are, and that’s a shame. There should be no mystery. Everyone has something to say, and a way to say it. I guess this intimidation comes from the judgements others make when they see art. No one can judge your art, but you. It’s your trace of life. It’s also hard work and study, not “talent”. I’m not a fan of that word. I guess it’s true that some people may have more of a natural tendency than others to draw, or demonstrate other skills, but it should never be an excuse not to express. I also dislike “talent” because I think it discounts the hard work that goes into building artistic skill.
In physics, it’s said, “for every action, there is a reaction”. My reaction to the beauty I see in life is paint. What and how I paint is based on an emotional connection to a subject. I can paint the same scene dozens, hundreds of times with differing results because I’m not a camera. I don’t paint unless I have something new to say–unless I’m focused on learning, which is actually quite often. Like a musician who plays scales, I paint studies that have no particular meaning other than a lesson, often to connect with the physicality of paint, surface, and so on. This also means that I have multiple personalities! This sometimes confounds collectors, because I have more than one “style”. I’m not consistent, because the confluence of emotional reaction, scale, materials and many other factors come into play. My art isn’t usually planned, so the result is not predictable. I admire some artists for their firm viewpoint and definitive work, but that’s not me. One reason I believe some artists paint with a very specific viewpoint is market expectations. I won’t allow my art to suffer at the hands of market expectations. I hope collectors buy my art because they have a connection with an individual painting for its merit.
What I choose to paint is often tied to what I need to learn. At times, my focus may be on finding the beauty in the most simple, mundane topic, and others–usually around the time I need a break from painting–I need a grand scene to spark that reaction.
Regardless of this statement, I hope my art connects with you. I hope I take you there.
- Spark Arts, San Francisco, CA
- San Buenaventura Artists Association, Ventura, CA
Selected Exhibitions, Awards & Press