At this point in my life I have developed what I call a personal vocabulary about how I paint and what I paint. Subject matter is always changing…slightly. It veers circumstantially based on what my everyday experiences entail and is non-linear. I am lucky enough to live in an incredibly graceful and visually pleasing environment that inspires daily. The lighting and landscape is continually punctuated with mental oohs and aahs. Never a morning goes by without my comments on how fortunate we are to be living here. That said, I have no desire to do postcard art that mimics reality, but rather use the surroundings to inspire a direction. I’m okay with that whatever the direction might be and I sometimes get lost in those directions without a map. When the painting process is working (usually towards the end of the painting) it is a religious experience and better than any church.
So here is my current (and challenging) conundrum. I paint continually and in all kinds of weather. Larger paintings (over three feet in any direction) take 1-2 months to complete and many times are repainted over and over. Sound a little neurotic? Yup! No matter, it is just part of the process and adds to the so-called patina.
The work is usually abstracted based on memory and place. I have a reasonable track record of getting into museum shows and competitions every year with this subject matter, but this is a limited audience, a resume builder, and if I admit it...ego gratification. I want to reach a larger audience without losing the integrity of the work or subject matter. My wife, Tricia, my most trusted critic and primo sociology professor, has suggested incorporating just a touch of architecture to the work. Since most of the previous work is based on the grid and architectural elements, this is not a big stretch. In fact, I have actually done that intuitively to two or three paintings this year already. Tricia believes that hints of a slightly more recognizable subject matter will make the work more accessible. Don’t let that word disturb you. It is in context of building a bigger audience. That is where I am today, processing and absorbing that information.