• Animal Kingdom
  • Animal Kingdom
  • Animal Kingdom

Animal Kingdom

I think of my art as existing on the edge of my mental and visual periphery. I can’t quite see it, but I know it’s there and try to capture it anyway. It’s as real to me as a sound I hear in the distance, but can’t identify or see the source.

The animals in the paintings are anthropomorphic in the sense that they represent universal human situations, including conflict and opportunity. I’d like each painting to tell a story and I’m drawn to animals in particular because I think they’re easier to work with narratively. We don’t have socially constructed ideas about what makes a fox or a butterfly truly beautiful or flawless, so I’m free to represent my subjects in an ageless and unbiased manner.

For me, painting and the stories I tell are like the way people perceive memories. Some images in a memory are clear and rich with detail, while other aspects of that same memory may be fuzzy visually, just colors or shapes. Not everything is equally defined visually in a memory. The world in which these animals live is similarly fluid. Even if the animals chosen symbolically are not traditionally considered beautiful, I try to represent them as beautiful aesthetically. I’m interested in making beautiful things. The butterflies often represent opportunity and change.

Each painting is part of a larger story. I work quite methodically after a start that always begins from the loosest sketch or mark on a page in my sketchbook. This is when I first pull the vision from my periphery view. By the time I turn it into a painting or drawing, it’s long gone and I’m left with an image that becomes a candid snapshot of a world that’s always active and changing.

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