The Full Story
To start, I came to painting late. I was a banker for much of my career and though I loved a lot about what I did, it wasn't enough, my creative side wanted an outlet. Through several different forks in my path, I started studying art history, eventually earning a Master's degree. It was in those required studio classes, especially in Florence, I found oil painting and fell in love. Oil will always be my favorite medium, but I love watercolor, oil pastel, charcoal, and mixed-media, just to name a few. I simply love art, viewing and creating it.
My art, like the rest of my life, is eclectic. I have many interests, and my paintings reflect this. The inspiration for my work is the world around me, I paint what I see, or rather, what I want to see. Most of my paintings are in oil, and this is where my eduction was focused. I love trying new things and new techniques.
In my "Remains of the Day" series, I paint the canvas with a palette knife to create a background that has no form. The results of this part of the process often surprise me. Once I finish the background, I choose a subject that I feel connects with it. These subjects are painted in abstract silhouette. At times they are what emerges from the color and sometimes the color surrounds them.
I don't feel like I am done with my First Citizens work, but I have put it aside for awhile. It started when I discovered hundreds of old black and white photos of Indigenous people taken by Edward S. Curtis. Curtis' black and white images capture the intensity of his subjects and often, the truth of their existence. I also wanted to capture the spirit and nature of these incredible people. I am not Native American. However, I feel a connection to my subjects and want to show the beauty of their inherent dignity, even in the face of the offensive treatment they continue to experience. They simultaneously emerge from, and disappear into the canvas, as Native Americans are increasingly disappearing. I return to this series over time to find new ways to connect to my subjects and Edward S Curtis.