|The Nude in the 21st Century|
Painting the human figure is one of the great passions of my life. When I begin a portrait, my goal is not to end up with a "beautifully rendered" or "accurate" painting. Rather, if I'm successful, the finished piece becomes a journal of my observations, emotions and reactions to the model, at the specific, shared, moment in time. Accuracy is important, but if accuracy is your main goal, chances are that you will end up with something that looks like the model, but tells you very little about either the model or the artist. When I begin a painting, I first consciously ask myself "What is it about this model that's unique? How has this person's life experience expressed themselves in their form?" and perhaps more importantly, "How do I feel about the model? What is it that interests me about this person?" Once I have a sense of my emotional connection, that will guide me through my approach to the painting. Composition, cropping, color, emphasis and exaggeration all work together to get to the essence of the person who has granted me the honor of observing them.
All of my work is done from directly from the live model. I choose to work in watercolor because its immediacy, spontaneity, and sense of commitment help keep me focused in the moment of observation.