My main source of inspiration and renewal, in life as well as art, has always been natural spaces. So I simply try to create beautiful places in my paintings. I believe, as the classical Chinese painters did, that we acquire wisdom from the natural world.
The complexity of the natural world, the constant transformations taking place that are impossible to capture, is what intrigues me. I think our spiritual and creative life is in similar flux, much as we'd like to think we are in control of every thought. So in the imaginary landscapes I draw, there is always movement and ambiguity.
I like to leave the maker's marks, the means of creating illusion, quite apparent to the viewer. Although I do a lot of plein air drawing , the more complex paintings are from memories of observation.
There are two important influences on my technique. My training in designing typefaces has heightened my awareness of how the edges and spaces between things define what we see. And my admiration for Chinese brush painting has shown me how you can create opulence from the humblest of tools. My most recent paintings have been about brining these two spheres, the east and west in me, into some kind of fresh synthesis.
The bit below occurred to me after reading an article about how scientists were trying to restore a stream by leaving tiny bits of healthy stream life under rocks in in the stream bed:
The world is made of of infinitessimally small, invisible things that eventually make larger things we can see and comprehend. At some point on the spectrum of our comprehension we name these things. I think this process is one of the keys to the mystery of how we create correspondences between, say, tiny abstract brushstrokes and a memory of a babbling brook. I would like my paintings to feel like they explore the terrain between abstraction and recognition.