California is filled with extremes. Snowy mountains in the east and hot deserts in the south ring the edges of the state while the Pacific Ocean laps the west. We have some of the deepest lakes and deserts coupled with the highest peak in the continental U.S. National parks and wilderness lands keep areas pristine for the city dwellers to escape to. I want to portray the natural wonders of the state and in particular, the little-seen and unknown, from the ecosystem in the tops of redwood trees down to the lichens and mosses at their bases.
I want to show the conflicts and idiosyncrasies of living in California by creating narratives that tell the stories of yesterday while putting light on today and the future. Redwood slab timelines are revealing in their history of conflict and domination. How can the redwood tree be an indicator of the past and a harbinger of the future? Should the last remaining old growth be protected only in parks, or should all of them be protected? Old redwood tourist attractions are living remnants of the redwood empire when California cities were first built. I am interested in California's growth in urban areas and the needs for people to access nature.
I have always been inspired by those artists who trek in the woods and paint: Charles Burchfield, Emily Carr, Thomas Uttech, and Agnes Pelton, to name a few. They were inspired by the landscape and found their own voice. I sketch and take photographs and then paint what I find interesting. It might be the redwood duff underneath my feet or some trash in juxtaposition with a beautiful scene. The unusual and mysterious need to be examined and understood.