I didn't go to all the trouble of creating a web site to show some examples of my activity as a painter of pictures without a little rap thrown in with the images. It should be evident that I am not hung-up on any particular style or technique of painting. I feel perfectly comfortable using whatever materials and painting techniques I feel will best render the subject or idea of a painting; if in fact, there is one. Often I just like to start painting with nothing in mind and simply play with light, color, texture, form and methods of applying paint and see where it goes. Mostly this is just practice, but sometimes something interesting will come out of it. Also, I will occasionally copy a painting of a master if I want to really study their technique and want to hang the painting on my wall. Of the masters (both old and modern), my favorites have usually been the great colorists, and I suppose the most common element running through my paintings is my use of color and light which comes from a life long (well most of it) fascination with the infinate variations of light and color.
As a painter of pictures, I have sometimes been called an artist although I prefer a different label. So to avoid any circular and terminally lame discussion of art, I will subscribe to a very simple, relatively painless yet comprehensive 16th Century definition of art (ars), which is: manual dexterity in the service of illusion. So in this context, without too great a leap of logic, I can think of myself as just your run of the mill illusionist and defer the artist bit to be determined by history. And before I get too carried away, its time for an other definition. Now, I will mostly ignore common historical reference to the word illusion and using poetic license will give a meaning almost opposite to its commonly accepted reference to some sort of deception. How, as a painter of pictures, I think of illusion is as a pseudo synonym of to illuminate or bring attention to. This may seem a bit convoluted, but well, it sounds better than, "art: manual dexterity in the service of illuminati" even though in the 16th century it would have been equally true.
Ok, now that that's out of the way, seriously, I do in fact, feel that painting, can be a form of wizardry-well alchemy at the very least. The can be part I won't touch with a ten foot brush, but the illumination of or bringing attention too something that powerfully touches our psyche can be very profound and seem almost magical. Have you ever stood, looking at a painting in absolute awe and wonder, and all you could say to yourself was something like, "fucking amazing! how did they pull that off." And fo me as a painter the most rewarding aspect is on the very rare occasions I am able to look at something I've done and have a similar reaction along with wondering, "where did that come from?" I guess those rare epiphanies or magical moments happen when the illusion works. When the illusion suspends space and time and allows us to see the world as it truely is, infinite.
For the most part, painting is hard work. Very solitary, like something you could really get behind in prison. One could wax on for hours about the aesthetics, inner vision, design and etc. of painting, but ultimately painting is simply about applying paint to a surface. I realize this reduction may be at odds with the sensibilities of many real artistes, but it shouldn't, because it is within this simple fact the real wizardry of painting resides. The mechanics (the craft) of painting consists of two aspects: an understanding of the characteristics of the materials and the ability to control them. Proficiency in both aspects are developed by study, experimentation and constant practice. Even taking into account considerable natural ability, you wouldn't expect someone to play a Scriabin piano sonata well without having spent a great deal of time just practicing scales. The same applies to painting a picture. I'm not saying that mastery of craft alone can make a great or even successful painting, but it is certainly a basic and essential ingredient, and it makes painting a lot more enjoyable and natural when you have a wealth of possibilities for creating whatever effects you want and can just sort of swim around in them, or better yet, surf them. This is when the work of painting becomes play. Well I'm going to go play now, so bye and thanks for checking out my web site.