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About the Artist

I began a serious interest in painting in the summer of 1967. Over the next 13 years, when I painted, my approach mostly involved left brain control, descriptive, short brushstroke representational painting. During 1980 or ’81, I took a 180 degree paradigm shift and began to paint spontaneous, wet-on-wet acrylic, very large canvas paintings directly outdoors from maple tree subjects. It was very right brained and had very little predetermined control, or pre-drawing. It was absolutely liberating. These painting images were very natural in exterior contours, but otherwise were very expressive in invented bold personal emotional color and interior content. The viewpoint also caused the painting to appear more abstracted. It was a macro view instead of the typical middle distance landscape view. Philosophically I found I was not only celebrating the maple trees but life itself.

At the time I began working in this manner I didn’t have any known historical influences. I simply wanted to paint spontaneous wet on wet bold color watercolors of nature subjects that were significant to me. The desire was to paint very large (around 6 by 8 feet canvases) and I couldn’t find any watercolor paper this large so I developed a way to paint in a wet-on-wet water color approach on canvas. After I worked like this for a while and became sensitive to this kind of painting I became aware of some historical work. The color field painters during the mid 20th century were painting large canvases with stained color areas. Painters Mark Rothko and Helen Frankenthaler were working in similar ways. I also liked Emil Nolde’s bold color watercolors. However this work has been my own revelation and I am continuing to develop it, primarily with the iris flower as a stimulating subject

I paint large scale canvases with bold invented color – lyrical and very expressive color passages of natural images viewed so very close up only part of the external contours of the particular mages are seen. I don’t use the internal natural details normally seen with such a view. Currently I am painting flower images, mainly from the iris flower. These images are meant to be more than mere visual illusions or mimics of iris flowers – they are intended to be metaphors or doorways into visual, emotional, and sometimes even spiritual journeys – into flowerscapes of peace, order, beauty, and unity. They are metaphors of the human condition, of the magnificent yet fragile nature of our humanity and our constant dependence on our Creator for inspiration, protection, nurturing, and restoration. I realize humans are capable of extremely ugly horrible cruel things also, which is worth addressing in paint as well. Presently my work is both a joyful celebration of living, having purpose on this earth, and bearing fruit and also addressing issues that arise on the earth from mankind leaving an intimate relationship with our Creator and thus mismanaging our stewardship of the earth.

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