As one writer insightfully observed, I am addicted to the arts. This is certainly true. I have proven my dedication and commitment to the arts as a visual artist, a scholar, an author, an art historian, an educator and as an arts manager.
As a visual artist, I paint character portrayals, landscapes and inanimate objects in watercolor and oil. I accept portrait commissions in oil and watercolor. I also doodle in pen and ink making semi-representational compositions in black and white.
When I paint people, I want them candid, convincingly alive that they visually communicate and seemingly cognizant of the viewers. My interest is on people and the landscapes these people are in. When the candidness of my subjects calls for a spontaneous approach, I use watercolor. When a studied composition is the goal, then I use oil on canvas.
In doing my portraits, I am challenged not to simply capture the likeness but the character, personality and life of the subject. In my portraits and in every artwork that I do, I aspire even further than this. I want the viewers to "talk" to the subject and the subject to "talk" back. The subject visually comes out of the 2-dimensional plane to make that contact with the viewers. For me, this is a mark of an excellent portrait and in every character portrayals I do whether in oil or watercolor. My hands, mind and heart all work in unison to achieve the awe the viewers experience in their initial encounter with any of my art works.
In my landscape paintings, I want to create a picture window where people are invited to stop and ponder about the imagery and perhaps, picture themselves as part of the scene. The poignant emptiness and vastness I picture evokes a sense of tranquility made tangible by the subdued tonality, interplay of pastel colors and the soft painterly-strokes. My scene paintings are almost hypnotic. As the painting lures its viewers to a deep contemplation of the subject, the viewer unconsciously participates in the creative process. He/she relates to the scene depicted and at the same time imagines himself/herself a participant in that scene. When the viewer is caught to participate, only then can I say my painting is done! I believe that the appreciation of art is a very personal and special response to creative work and that as an artist, I should consider ways to help create this response in my viewers. Being an art educator, art historian and an artist, this idea can definitely be realized.
I want to create 2-dimensional works that will trigger a lasting smile, a lasting longing to look, a lasting visual imagery that will encourage some positive view of our wonderful world and of the people living in it. I do not aspire to be the solitary eccentric, genius artist remove from the community. I want to actively interact with the community and for my paintings to relate to the society I am in. My works speak of the people and places of my home community and the kinds of scenery that capture the beauty and peace of nature I have experienced and wished to share.