I am an oil painter who primarily paints familiar landscapes. Translating the beauty of a landscape onto a canvas presents a multitude of challenges and opportunities. My approach to navigating these challenges is informed by three major influences. First, the paintings of the California Impressionists — especially Maurice Braun, Edgar Payne, and William Wendt – have provided a model of capturing the light and colors of the California landscape. Second, I have learned from the virtual instruction of the powerful landscape painter Scott Christenson (christensenstudio.com). Finally, the most important influence on my work has been my teacher, Ramona artist Pat Kelly (patkellystudio.com).
Like all of my teachers, I prefer to paint a scene in person — en plein air — and then use that sketch and photographs as the basis for a larger studio painting. The photos provide the detail, while the plein air sketch guides me in color and spirit. I use a limited palate of mostly primary colors, which aids in color harmony. The process of painting, while at times frustrating, is also a magical experience. When things are going well, I am fully present, listening to the vibrations of the painting.
My goal as an artist is to produce landscape paintings that capture a “sense of place.” The subjects of most of my paintings are locations that I love deeply: the Sierra Nevada mountains, Southern California deserts, and of course the California coastline. I’m guided by the feelings these places evoke in me – the grandeur of the desert, the fresh glory of waves against the shore, the joyful peace of a Sierra stream. Hopefully my paintings evoke something similar in those who see them.