“While much of the art of the past has dealt with the glories and follies of humankind, I feel a need to portray nature for its own sake with the hope of promoting value and respect for our unique planet and the varied forms of life with which we share it.”
My career in art grew out of the interest I've always had in nature. As a child in southern California I spent many hours roaming the Santa Monica Mountains exploring and collecting all sorts of creatures. As I grew older, I began to draw what caught my interest and in this way engage with nature as an observer in a non disruptive way, and this became my preferred way of exploring the world around me.
Upon beginning my career as a professional artist, what better way to live life than exploring things I found of interest and printmaking well suited to my love of drawing. Etching and engraving were of particular interest for the rich line and tone possible with these media as well as the craftsmanship involved in creating the plate and printing it on fine paper. For depicting the texture and patterns of fur and feather it was ideal.
By 1980 I wanted to bring more color to my imagery and began exploring the new medium of Mylar lithography. This form of original lithography allowed for the accurate registration of an unlimited number of color plates and although still based in drawing it was like painting with the press and produced full color images not previously possible in original prints. Blue Berry Press was established in Cambria in 1985 to not only create my own work, but to also work with other artists interested in creating with this unusual medium.
In 1982 I made my first trip to East Africa primarily to study big cats and was soon totally captivated by the varied and abundant wildlife I found there. I had spent a lot of time with animals at zoos and wildlife facilities, but to experience the ancient rhythms and interrelationships of animals on the open savannah was life changing. The drama of watching a cheetah stalk a heard of gazelle with quiet patience then burst into action as the selection was made and the chase began, or observing the social complexities of elephants as family groups as they greeted each other at a waterhole. Being among the animals in there natural setting was to bring to life what I only sensed in viewing them in captivity. I ended this trip with a promise to myself I would return!
By 1985, with great reception of my Africa inspired works at art shows nationally and internationally, I co-founded Duma Safaris with friend and publisher Christopher Law. Not only did this provide me regular access to my subject matter, I also had the great pleasure of introducing others to Africa and sharing in the awe and excitement as they were drawn into the magic of this pre industrial world.
In 1999 I began painting with oils and began exploring our beautiful and varied local landscape. I found painting was wonderful for portraying the subtleties of light, color, and atmosphere of landscape work. Painting also allowed me to work on location and experience the changing of the light as the day progresses and promoting more freedom and spontaneity in my work.
As a resident artist at Studios on the Park in Paso Robles the past four years, I am able to display a historical range of my work, from my etchings done 45 years ago to paintings in progress in my studio. I also enjoy sharing stories about my work with visitors. Studios on the Park represents an unusual and original concept bringing a community of artists together to present many forms of art with monthly shows and classes to the public.
Studios is open Monday- Wednesday 12-4, Thursday and Sunday 12-6, Friday and Saturday 12-9. For my current weekly hours either check the website studiosonthepark.org and click on my artist link or feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org