Light for an artist is all important; the subject is revealed in light: seeing the first light of early morning, the overhead sun at midday, the quiet light at evening, and the electric lamp light of night.
In my paintings, capturing the angle of the sunlight on trees, buildings, grass, or sandy beach at a particular moment is crucial. I try to keep the spark that caught my interest as I add, subtract, or move figures and objects to find balance in the composition. The color in each painting is woven into a tapestry to create a lyrical movement around each picture. For example, in this show, I have a number paintings of boats on the water. What interests me in this subject is setting the arresting colors of gleaming white, black, peach, turquoise and pink of the boats, docks and houses against the blues of the water and sky. These striking contrasts can create riveting images.
The night paintings in the show are painted in my studio, using models, and objects to create the image of a porch on a summer night. This gives me a chance to paint Illuminated, brightly colored objects and figures set against silhouetted darkened night landscapes. As in much of my work, there may be be a suggestion of a narrative or story for the viewer to complete.
I have been inspired by American painters, like Edward Hopper, George Bellows, and the 19th century artist Winslow Homer. Among European artists, my influences have included the realists of the 19th century like Corot, early Monet, the artists of the British watercolor movement, and the Dutch realists of the 17th century.
In this, my first exhibit at the SOMA Gallery, I am exhibiting paintings that show a little of the life of the town: a day at the beach, summer picnics, boats around the harbor, biking around quiet streets, an evening party, and dreaming by the bay.
As a boy, I came to Cape May to go fishing with my family. Now, I have made some works of art that reflect the beauty of this place.
Since my student days at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia, I have been painting and teaching. I hope to continue painting these scenes of Cape May, in the light that illuminates all of nature.