About the picture on the masthead
The picture above is a triptych. It was done in acrylic in 2010, using many of the figures I have been interested in painting lately. I like to take the fanciful costumes of Venetian Carnival revellers and place them in incongruous settings, like the wonderful cathedrals I have visited in my travels. You can tell by this that I got my artistic start as a boy, drawing comic books. Every picture tells a story, but you don’t need to know what it means in order to enjoy its atmosphere.
About egg tempera painting
I took up egg tempera painting about 25 years ago. It’s the most useful way to paint subjects that take a particularly large amount of development and refinement.
Usually I will start off with preliminary studies in much simpler and more rapidly-executed media – photography, pen and ink drawing, pastel, and various combinations of acrylic with these materials. These sketches are comparatively quick, even when they’re not necessarily very easy.
For the current carnival series of paintings, I have quickly built up a portfolio of pastel and acrylic paintings of Venetian Carnival costumes and their models. The studies serve as the basis of a complex, constructed painting, such as my next project – The Battle between Carnival and Lent (watch this page).
About this blog
Watch over my shoulder while I try to follow an idea from the beginning sketch thru a finished painting. Hopefully, it will look like I know what I’m doing, and never make any mistakes. But the truth is, a lot of times things change once you’re in a creative situation, and you can’t know where things are going to go.
I’ve already realized that much of what I do to make a painting is unconscious. In having to think about my work, and document its daily progress, I’m noticing things for the first time – like my assumption that I smear the paint with my left hand, when in fact, I caught myself smudging it with my brush hand just as often.
About the artist
I’ve been painting for over 60 years. I went to art school, won prizes, studied abroad, taught, did commercial jobs, got in a gallery, made a reputation, blah blah blah, and have painted daily since 1956. My storage spaces are lined with rack upon rack of paintings, representing five decades of daily artwork. I paint because I want to, what I want to, and when I want to, which means right after breakfast until lunch, and then back into the studio until dinner. My wife suffers the agonies of the damned trying to get me to go on vacation.