In 1964 I was 16. I thought I was going to be an artist. Willem de Kooning was my art hero. I became an engineer instead. Vietnam might have affected my thinking but more likely than not I just didn’t know what I wanted to do. I became an artist 40 years later.
Today when students ask me about being an artist I tell them to learn to draw, study art history, find your voice and don’t quit your day job.
It took a few years to find my voice – that which differentiates my work and provides a moral foundation and vision. The notion of creativity and striving for an unattainable perfect mental image has a hold of me. I am driven to get it right.
This is why I continue to paint large faces. This is why I am in pursuit of a reality that goes beyond an image. This is why I continue to experiment hoping for a discovery, maybe a new method that let’s me take a step towards my goal. This is why I repaint paintings. This is why I paint. This is also why I question why I paint.
I love beautiful art and respect those who bring it into my life but my own artistic goal is something else.