Trying to push the boundaries of my imagination and communicating from my “core” have always been essential components to my art. It is created from the inside out, more about what is instinctively understood rather than seen.
Primarily being a studio artist with a focus on the conceptual and abstract, my work inevitably requires a great deal of planning and preparation. The choice of medium for each piece, whether it is oil, wood cut, acrylic, pastel, pen & ink, mixed media, etc., is dictated by the concept and becomes the vehicle for my imagination.
A few years ago, on a lark and for a change of pace, I embarked on an adventure very different from my normal way of working. Because of my love for the natural world, I decided to try my hand at “plein air” painting.
At first I disliked it immensely, not for the process but for the results. With so much sensory information bombarding me, my urge was to render naturalistically, something that is totally foreign to my art making style. Since art is about personal voice, revealing as much of the artist as the subject matter and because I love the benefits of working outdoors, I was determined to find that voice. Each time painting outdoors, I would try something different, embrace a meditative calm, set problems for myself that would help explore my connection with all that surrounded me, started using the palette knife, kept going and eventually discovered my expressive style.
The most powerful and consistent experience was the energy; the energy in the trees, the wind, the water, the stone, the earth, as well as how that energy intermingled with my own. Each time I go out I am humbled and reminded of mankind’s connection to nature. It is that energy that I strive to express. The process of plein air painting freed my spirit and my art process. It has allowed more spontaneity and the ability to commune with forces larger than myself. Bringing that freedom back into the studio for further exploration is enriching the work I create there.
Life is not static, nature is not static. Even when seemingly dormant, they are constantly changing and in motion. The plein air paintings on display here are in response to the experience of working surrounded by nature and in the moment.