What inspired your winning entry? I was doing a small series of paintings using Persian rugs as the background and was drawn to the beautiful contrast between the red and green. My idea was to emphasize the difference between the two colors but still convey how awesomely beautiful opposites can appear together. The result was a painting with a lot of vibrancy and drama.
Where did you study art? My only formal training has been through the Scottsdale Artists’ School where I studied with great artists like David Leffel and Jeff Legg. Most of my education has come from very closely studying the works of the artists I admire most and trying to figure out how they achieved such dynamic pieces. Then I spend the time to develop my own skills, so I can visually present the ideas I can conceive in my mind.
How would you describe your style? I think my style has been best described as abstract realism. It consists of taking an abstract idea and using objects in a realistic manner to convey that idea. My style continues to evolve as I grow as an artist.
What is one thing most people don’t know about you? I spent 20 years on active duty in the United States Air Force and only began painting a little over 10 years ago.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? I think the best advice I have heard is: “Be the person your dog thinks you are.” How great would we all be?
If you weren’t an artist, what would you be? I would probably be a forest ranger. I love spending time out in nature where there is quiet and beauty. What I currently am, other than an artist, is a business person managing lots of people in a large company.
What’s the most meaningful recognition you’ve received for your artwork? Being selected as a finalist in the David A. Leffel International Award for Excellence in Painting competition. It was such an honor to be recognized by a person who I feel is one of the greatest living artists of our time in a genre where he has raised the bar to staggering heights.
What galleries represent your work? Scottsdale Fine Art, Scottsdale, AZ.
This story was featured in the December 2013 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art December 2013 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story!