Not uncommon to most representational artists, my paintings have stories to tell. In that connection to a location, a season, sounds of nature or dramatic light of day that my paintings begin to evolve. Collectively, the joyful experiences behind the paintings were formed long ago, in my early years. Exploring the outdoors meant new discoveries, sketching and painting naturally joined in. Whether hiking state parks,or nearby woods, camping, canoeing or fishing, I became connected to my surroundings. Skipping school to climb waterfalls and swim in deep clear pools were my escapes. The energies and inspirations provided through nature continue to guide my paintings. There is an unmistakable sense of place and connection that occurs when you are painting for hours on location. The paintings in this exhibition are representative of that love I have for nature and being a part of it. The mountains, rivers and wilderness provide more than just painting inspiration, they nurture the mind, body and soul.
I am hopeful these paintings have the ability to invite the viewer into a setting, leading you on to discover similar places of your own.
A lifelong resident of New York State, I grew up in the village of Williamsville. At the time a relatively small village outside of Buffalo with room to explore. My mother was the artistic influence, my father worked for an advertising agency managing the finances. On special occasions I would accompany my father to the agency, spending time with illustrators and designers. Watching the magic created by these artists is what fostered a sincere interest in developing my skills as an artist, together with their encouragement.
The paintings of the Wyeths, Winslow Homer, Edward Hopper and the Hudson
River School artists are often in my thought process while painting. That is the second connection. Close to half of these works were started while painting in the company of other artists, whether in small groups or just with a friend. These are the personal connections I have been fortunate to enjoy and cherish. My sabbatical leave in 1987 took me to Rockport, Massachusetts to paint with Tom Nicholas, NA. The artist who became a close friend and Adirondack celebrity artist of sorts, during that same time was the late Don Getz AWS, of Ohio. Those early years and numerous painting trips with Don established connections within the Adirondack art community. I continue my painting with artists I met ten years ago from Publishers Invitationals hosted by Eric Rhoads, founder of Plein Air magazine.
A Bachelors of Science and Masters Degree in Art Education were earned from SUNY college at Buffalo. I continue to live in West Valley, with my wife Deborah, where I taught art at West Valley Central for 35 years. Through participation and involvement in local and regional art societies I have earned numerous awards and recognition. Equally important to me, are the rewards of having developed the artistic talents in so many students during my years of teaching.