This video documents my artistic process; from building the 48” x 96” wood-cradled panel to sketching and painting the surface. I would set up the camera each day and then paint. I repeated this process until the painting was complete. This captured about 25 hours of raw footage. The painting likely took 40 hours stretched over several days and months. The footage has been edited and distilled down to show the progress of the painting from beginning to end.
Also shown here is the completed painting “Thoreau’s Cabin”. The scene combines imagery from both the coastal mountain range of Oregon and Devil’s Lake State Park in Wisconsin. Therein lies a distant cabin in the woods, whose chimney exhales smoke that becomes dusk and eventually the Milky Way. The moss carpeted forest floor climbs onto the trees that stretch from the earth to the sky. Near becomes distant, day becomes night and these dichotomies sit neatly together on this tall surface.
As a painting subject, the landscape is particularly challenging: each piece can be full of personality, like portraiture, and abundant with unforeseen opportunity. The subtle poetry, complicated color, and unique compositions make the process of creating exciting. In my art practice, I find that chaos, awe and fear are revealed in ways I could not plan when I begin a piece. Landscape painting often reflects a generation’s cultural understanding of nature. My generation, steeped in the knowledge of history takes comfort in the nostalgic view of nature as an unchanging spiritual force.