I want people to feel the importance of place, to want to go there and experience it. I want them to notice something new or see the familiar in a new light. I want to engender affection for the creation and the thoughtful additions to it. I might show the ugly side of our abuse of it. But as Wendell Berry said in his Jefferson Lecture, It All Turns On Affection, "affection involves us entirely." if we don't have an underlying affection for people and places, we will not be moved to care for them. Landscape Painting can do this, and keep people and places in our imagination, and perhaps hint at the long history and culture associated with place.
Having grown up in Rock Island, Illinois next to a woods, a love of the natural landscape was born. The Mississippi River, the Rock River, and the Hennepin Canal and the lore of the large Native American settlement that had been there, all had an impact on his imagination.
At Iowa State University he studied Landscape Architecture, then Graphic Design, and took all the drawing and painting classes offered. The large Grant Wood murals, and Christian Peterson sculptures on campus hinted at a career in fine art, but without current role models it was hard to see a way forward. He pursued illustration, and graphic design. By 1969 he was living in Berkeley, CA. where he studied etching at Kathan Brown’s studio in North Berkeley. By 1976, with a growing family and no money, he became a salesman in the commercial printing industry. Later, he changed careers to teach 3D Animation and Computer Graphics at a high school.
Nearing retirement, he again took up drawing and painting. He studied Watercolor painting under Michael Reardon, and Thomas Schaller. Other influences have been Larry Cannon, Robert Wade, Joseph Zbukvic, also the early California Impressionists. Important encouragement to keep painting was from Painter and friend, Carol Aust.