"Strawberry Moon Reflections" 48 x 72 inches oil/canvas

“Strawberry Moon Reflections” 48 x 72 inches oil/canvas from “36 Views of Towd Point”

Painting a canvas larger than I measure standing up is like leaving for a trip without a map. You might know what town you are heading to, but an openness for how you get there and what part of town you want to land in allows for chance and exploration. I don’t want the pre-packaged tour. 

I must pay attention to the edge boundaries and resolve the painting while considering every section of a vast expanse. You cannot complete a one-foot section on the upper right and pronounce it finished. Every single stroke on a painting is in relationship with every other. It’s a chorus, and they all have to sing together.

In my work, the painting is built stroke by stroke, and like an orchestra, there is a moment from the water area, another from the sky, and quite another from the land mass. They must all resonate in shape, texture, and design so the eye can glide across the surface at a measured pace. Time is an element.

I don’t want a miserly skimpy paint surface; I want a juicy flow. The most critical for me is the color. I make paintings to experience colors that I’m passionate about. A good-sized swatch of violet and ultramarine blue, and I sink in with pleasure. It’s a lift for the senses; the color energizes me but simultaneously puts me at ease.

I imagine what Monet might have felt as he vigorously painted his room-sized water lilies. Did he become obsessed, laying paint over paint, swirling it on, and getting lost in the color? Did anyone put a hand on his shoulder and say, “I think this area is done”? The point of completion for a painting is a decision and a skill. As you pile paint in one section, you must add more everywhere else. It’s entirely up to the artist where to stop, how to stop, and call it complete.


On a large surface, the right balance is a highly delicate process. This is not a mural of flat color where often there is a specific plan. An oil painting on canvas reveals the history of time spent to make the picture. If you look a little longer, the artwork will tell the story of the creation of the entire work.

I’m working away in my studio on my Towd Point series. Want to come for a studio visit? Just let me know

Until next time,



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