These are some of my notes as an artist as I seek to put into words that which comes much easier to me to express in colors, shapes and gestures. It is not in essay form, just random thoughts and realizations as I have them that will hopefully help to clarify what I feel called to create. HDB


Lord,  help me to put it on the canvas how it feels in my heart.




When someone looks at my paintings I want them to feel the same joy I feel looking at a sunset or the sun catching a branch the right way when you are looking into the woods. Light dispersed across and around shapes that create movement, story, delight.  



Expression v Connection - two very different parts of the creative process. Today I spent a lovely afternoon with a musician who was singing for a group of adults with developmental disabilities. The singer, myself, and the group were all connected by the art of music. We were all feeling the same beat, the same emotions and the same desire to express ourselves.

Later that evening, I was walking the dogs for the last time under a bright crescent moon and a sky full of stars. I had had a few glasses of wine and I wanted nothing more than to go into my studio and express all I was feeling. It was a completely different feeling from earlier in the day when I felt connected by the art - tonight I wanted to express the art.

How are these emotions different? How are they connected? These are the questions I ponder this evening.


 My paintings are an Offering

As I was lying in bed this morning thinking about the live painting at the TSG Met Gala Ocala event coming up - I started to think about my materials. My paint. I use low cost paint that I can easily find locally. Other artist choose to use high priced "better quality" paints. I use the paint I use because for me the painting is not about the paint it is about the humanity. It is about the person using the paint expressing themselves. When I paint I am pouring out a little bit of myself onto that  canvas. My fear, my insecurities, my pain, my pleasure, my faith, my memories, my hopes - myself. I am usually drained after an intense session of expressive painting, Some times I even cry. I have dug down into myself and pulled up  and out and I have put that onto the canvas. It does not matter what paint I use or instrument I use to get it onto the canvas - what matters is that it is an authentic part of me that I am giving to the process.  

Finding the story with in the painting.

Maybe the dots are all spotlights. 
I have always pushed myself out there to be looked at-  how do I look? How well do you like this? On the stage, creating, engaging. It scares me but I also can’t stop doing it. 

Improv v Composition

"You get lucky stokes and you get unlucky strokes and you have to paint the unlucky ones out." A. Sillman Joan Mitchell




The lines are random, the dot is on purpose. Somethings in our story we control other things we don't get to control.

My goal as an artist is to achieve great expressive strength with as few elements as possible.


Gestural paint strokes with focus on color and texture 


"Accidental color incidents" Suitcase Paintings page 21

Quiet and contemplative abstract works


I like to create some sort of tension with the dot. Sometimes it is perched solidly other times it is falling off sometimes it is floating in space. Sometimes it is not there at all.



Clifford Stills talked about  “Verticality expresses life force” “Simple Verticality” as opposed to horizontal lines representing peace, rest.



I find in my line paintings energy, movement, structure, focus, balance and ultimately clarity. Colorful points of clarity.


My entire life, art was how I expressed myself. I could not find the words but through color and line I could communicate what I was seeing and how I was feeling. It is also how I see the world around me.  The world is a chaotic, my life can be hectic, through painting I process, and I try to grasp understanding. I whittle things down to a simple easily understood line and dot.


For me it is about the marks (line) and the color and the composition I can create with those elements. The life those elements take on in my painting. I believe those things can express anything I may need to represent.


 The lines pose a problem then the dot a resolution.

Verticals represent a life force, movement as opposed to horizontals that represent rest. For me it’s not about the forms at all... it’s about the paint stroke, the marks and the color, the life those elements take on in my paintings. I believe they can evoke everything I’m trying to express as an artist. I’ve created a form/ structure if you will that allows me to play inside of it. I have my process my formula then I play with the color. How it lands on the paper and how it plays with the other colors on the paper.  The pencil marks and paint strokes are intuitive and random. They create a problem, then I try to solve the problem with the dot. 






Colorful Points of Clarity



Natural v spiritual


Push and pull

 I am looking for the spirituality beyond the material.

In Christianity there is the ongoing battle of the flesh v the spirit. The flesh represents the natural, the bad so to speak, that which needs to be shed, died to, overcome.

The Spirit is the good, that which represents the new, reborn, regenerated man.

There is this daily ongoing battle between the two –

Light v dark

Good v evil

Natual v spiritual

Flesh v spirit

Right v wrong

Faith v sight


All my paintings are a battleground.

I think in all my painting you can find this struggle to some level. A battle, a tension, a balancing act…It is not to say that all of my paintings are of a serious nature or content – they are not. Even the lighthearted, whimsical paintings have that internal struggle present because it is present in every situation, it is the struggle of every man, at all times, always present.

A stormy sky, meeting / colliding with a churning sea/ a line with a circle perilously placed/ conflict of man / nature/ culture / faith.


I feel in most of my paintings there is a colliding… of colors of paint of brushstrokes… a sense of moving about trying to find the right place.


Faith v sight


More to the situation than meets the eye


Clouds colliding into one another to make shapes.

Our eyes adjusting and using our mind, reason and experiences to find these pictures.

I do not have a desire to describe my reality or experience in a naturalist or representational way - but rather my freedom, my gift, as an artist is to use the language of colors and shapes to express the reality beyond what is seen with the eyes. That which is known and felt but unseen.