When did you start paintng or drawing?
You know whenever an artist gets asked this question invariably 99.9 %
of them are going to give the same answer and I’m no exception – “Ever
since I can remember”. To be more specific I began studying drawing
with real awareness about 20 years ago, painting about eleven years
ago and oils four years ago.
What artist or artists do you consider as having the greatest
influence on your work?
admire. There are over 3000 paintings and approximately 125 artists.
They all influence my work. Some that come to mind right away for
their distinctive American voice are: Winslow Homer, J.S. Sargent,
Edward Hopper, Andrew Wyeth and Fairfield Porter. Contemporary
artists: Jeremy Lipking, Robert Liberace, Michael Workman, Alex
Kanevsky, Jon Redmond, Ignat Ignatov…. The list is very long. Just
recently I became interested in Russian artists after pulling a book
on Serov from Tom Buechner’s shelf, and after visiting Gallery Russia
in Scottsdale, AZ.
Why do you mostly paint Figures and Portraits?
That would be a very long answer. The short answer is this – for six
years I was a deputy in a Coroner’s Office. I saw the human body in
just about every state imaginable, most of it ugly. So I want to
celebrate the beauty of the human form, the symmetry and perfection in
all of us, the spark we all carry inside.
What was the best advice you ever received that has helped you
with your art?
Squint. PAINT A LOT! Squint. And this quote from Daniel Coyle’s The Talent Code:
“1. Pick a target.
2. Reach for it.
3. Evaluate the gap between the target and the reach.
4. Return to step one”
If you could only pass along one piece of advice to a young
artist, what would that be?
“Try again. Fail again. Fail better.” Samuel Beckett
Do you have a favorite piece of art by someone other than
yourself? How about by you?
My own favorites are the ones that sell…or my next painting. Favs by
another artist…out of the almost infinite history of painting two
spring immediately to mind: Andrew Wyeth’s ‘Evening at Kuerner’s and
‘The Sorcerer’ cave painting at Trois-Freres. Oh and Constable’s
‘Cloud Studies’ and Sargent’s ‘Lady Agnew’ and Vermeer’s ‘Girl with a
Pearl Earring’ and…and…can I keep going?
Do you listen to music when you work? If so, could you share a few
titles or artists?
Yes, I have my iTunes library. The silence in the house can be
oppressive on Monday mornings…but my secret pleasure is listening
to podcasts of Radio 606. It’s a call-in radio show in England
concerning Premier League Football (soccer) with all the gossip and
dirt from the week.
Impossible! The best I can give are three books I’ve read in the past year
that had a major impact on how I work: “The Talent Ccode” by Daniel
Coyle, Robert Moretti’s “Practice Made Perfect” and ” Your Brain at
Work” by David Rock. Best fiction from the past year would prob be
“The Swan Thieves”.
Right now I really like Pride & Prejudice. The DP’s work in that movie
Favorite local performance?
Whenever one of my two kids scores a goal during the weekend’s soccer
games. Now THAT I’ll cheer!