While I work on an Artist's Statement and Bio, I've included the answers to questions from my web visitors. Please feel free to ask new questions that come up.
When did you start painting? In the summer of July 1996 I took a beginner watercolor painting class. I was looking for a mini-adventure or challenge to get my mind off of a recent heartbreak. In some ways it was love at first stroke. Since then I've taken a number of painting and drawing classes as well as read dozens of books on art, painting ideas and techniques, creativity and artistic pursuits. I find classes motivate me. I need the deadline of assignments to get started, but I can often keep going for months afterward. When I need another kick, I'll find a new teacher to share new techniques and to refresh basic skills. I also like books to get ideas and to try out different techniques.
Where do you get your ideas? Typically I will see something that catches my eye and either photograph, scan or sketch it. These images are the basis of the paintings I create. I tend to go through stages where some one thing may capture my attention and then I will paint a series of paintings on that subject. But mostly I hop around from idea to idea. I do keep a list of potential painting subjects in my electronic organizer and I have a box of images and photos I have collected from wherever. When I need something to paint, I'll sift through my list and idea box.
Did you always want to paint watercolors? I have always been attracted to the luminosity of watercolor paintings. Walking through an art exhibit, I always find myself drawn to paintings with a certain transparency. I had thought about taking a class for a while but it wasn't until 1996 that I signed up for one. You always hear people talking about how difficult it is to paint using watercolors. I thought I would try a drawing class first, or maybe acrylic or oil to start. But when I read the class description of the beginners' watercolor painting class at the Westchester Art Workshop I realized that I didn't need anything but the desire to try it.
Why are you doing this website? Too many people are surprised when I tell them that I am a painter. I suppose that the fact that I majored in Math in college and have had all sorts of technical jobs might explain that. But what surprises me more is that I have encountered more people who love what I do, but could never see themselves doing it. They tell me that they aren't artistic. They can't draw. They always wanted to try something like this, but figured that it's too late to start now. If I get nothing else across, it's to say that it is never too late to find a new outlet for your creativity. I'll be talking more about creativity, but if you think you haven't got any, you're wrong. It's there all right. Maybe it's hidden beneath your three oh one dash twelve forms in your In Box. Or perhaps you don't realize that your flair for coming up with new dishes that your fussy six year old will eat is an example of creative thinking. The name four o'clock comes from a flower that typically blooms late in the day. I figured that that is a great image to express my thoughts on artistic expression. For more information about the four o'clock flower check these links http://www.home.thirdage.com/Gardening/annhawk/Mirabilis.html http://www.uaex.edu/newsweb/articles/plant42.htm
Tell us something about you. I am 37 years old and live with in San Franciso, CA. I grew up in suburban New York, 30 miles north of New York City. I am the third of four children and the only left-handed child in my family. I went to college in Washington DC and Albany NY, where I studied Math and Computer Science. I've held a variety of jobs to pay the bills, from a lifeguard during my high school/college years, to a technical support specialist for Standard and Poor, and seem to have found my professional niche managing computer Help Desks for a variety of companies over the years. I moved out to California in 1998 for a much needed change in scenery. I sometimes miss the snow, but not the cold.
updated 6/29/04 skr