The only thing I have ever taken a straight line towards is teaching. It seems my preferred entrance is always through the back door, whether it is into book writing and illustration or fine art.
While I wish I had gone to art school, wish I had studied in Europe, wish I had taken figure drawing more often and studied art history more, the truth is that I am impatient and tend to live in my head. My art is an effort to duplicate what I see in my head, or on the horizon, or on a limb chirping...to capture that place where red-wing blackbirds sing while I paint, the reflections in the water, and the glow of a coffee cup or an apple, or a story playing itself like a movie in my mind.
I have come from a backround of book writing and illustration into a world of fine art. While still loving the creation of books and the writing of stories, I need the freedom to express my images without the limitations of pages, layout of words and limitation of subject matter.
I am a plein air and studio painter of landscapes, as well as a folk artist. Both have strong roots in a life spent outdoors, on farms and ranches and trails, and often in remote areas. My art helps me share that sense of wonder and inner quiet I feel when out in nature. It is that quiet that allows me to hear the stories of the land I am painting, that allows me to share the folkloric images in my mind. The patterns and colors of land, water and air weave their way into my own story of where I am standing, whether it is in front of a marsh full of black birds, or in front of my own imaginary story.
Many artists influence my work, and they all were on a constant search to capture the inner story of what was around them...from the Impressionists and Post-Impressionists Monet, Cezanne and Van Gogh, to Alaska's beloved folk artist Rie Munoz, to the contemporary artists I paint with on a regular basis.