Forty years ago I resigned a full time job working for Los Alamos National Laboratory as a model-maker, to become a professional artist. I earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree from USC, so turning back to art made sense.
The beginning of my career focused on creating hand-made limited edition serigraphs. I revelled in the printmaking process because it entailed working with my hands to make precisely cut lacquer film stencils. I benefitted from the luminous qualities the inks that were perfect for landscape images reflecting the beauty of Northern New Mexico.
Choosing landscape art allowed me to interpret an ever changing world. I continue to find solace and peace outdoors while observing and absorbing what pleases my eye, and this is the moment in time I strive to recreate.
In 2009 I stopped printmaking to focus solely on oil painting. This shift has been creatively invigorating for I am continuously learning new ways of mixing color, of using brushwork, and I love having the freedom to work on larger themes without the constraints of printmaking's limited sized paper.
Over the years the stylistic elements of my imagery have remained constant. I've retained the same graphic strengths of my earlier work and still seek to make sharply defined forms, transitions of color to capture light, and creating the feeling of unlimited space and depth.
USPS Postage Stamp
In late 2010 a lady representing the US Postal Service called me "out of the blue". She asked me if I would consider licensing the copyright for one of my images for a postage stamp. I of course replied yes and then asked for what purpose it would be used.
She explained that a committee was appointed in New Mexico and they had chosen me as the artist to represent the State for its upcoming 2012 Centennial of Statehood commemorative postage stamp. I simply could not express how grateful I was to be selected for this high honor.
I signed a contract and submitted multiple images to decide from, and I was told they would be back in touch later on. Then I waited patiently but as 2012 neared, I truly thought the entire plan had fallen through. However, in late Fall of 2011 I received a call requesting my appearance at a public unveiling with Governor Susana Martinez on the Santa Fe Plaza. (This picture is from that day). This was such a special moment, marking an amazing achievement in my decades-long career of creating art.
In My Studio
The truth is my studio is quite small, but I am able to work on larger themes as long as I manage my storage. This picture shows how I typically work on multiple paintings in series that usually comprise six month increments of effort.
I love the entire process of oil painting because its creative possibilities are limitless, and paint's slow drying time allows for making adjustments as the work progresses.
The nature of the life of an artist is one of confronting the unknown of a blank canvas, drawing the seed of an idea, and then having the courage and discipline to work towards its coming into focus and fruition. This journey involves concentration to create the details that define many sections of my paintings, and thus the act of laying down paint is in itself, a meditation.
In summary, my life as an artist means facing the winds of change and creating order out of chaos. This is my way of life and it keeps me constantly renewing and growing. I feel so fortunate to have been able to express my love of Nature in this way.