I grew up in rural Upstate New York where my early years were spent on a small family farm. I endlessly explored its old workshops, its antique tools and its textures. The people of the area were quite textured too and most spent their days physically working in one way or another.
The family business had been split years before– real estate and insurance going in one direction, and the publications of Holstein World going in another. Profits had never been enough to consider my family well off, but having fallen on the real estate side of things it was a comfortable life, and one in which the arts were appreciated and encouraged.
I showed tendencies toward visual art at a young age and by sixteen was studying under a local master named William Davies. Davies was a meticulous illustrator who inspired and encouraged me to enter a competition that led to my acceptance into a summer program hosted by New York’s School of Visual Arts. It was here that I had my first exposure to world-class artists from across fine art disciplines. I left determined to pursue a lifelong career in art.
While attending Syracuse University with a focus on Fine Art and Illustration, I trained with a list of master illustrators. I was introduced to some of my creative heroes like C.F. Payne and Gary Baseman, and gained a broader exposure to film and literature. The result was a mix of realism, surrealistic storytelling and humor in my work, and a focus on editorial illustration after graduation.
The following 20 years would bring a division in focus, a new-found faith in art, and a serious refinement in style. After starting out in illustration I moved into advertising where I worked as a designer, writer and art director and at the same time began to pursue drawing and painting as fine art.
As my career pulled me across the country and into California, my acrylics mirrored the landscapes with bright color, a painterly style and an increasing tendency to work from life. At the same time I traveled frequently into the Southwestern deserts and into Mexico which inspired drawing in sketchbooks and producing larger works of pencil on canvas.
My current work represents a return to the levels of detail that were present in my early illustration but with a focus on drawing from life and the inclusion of a new type of storytelling. The work is introspective and reflective of a man’s desire to practice his craft while asserting impressions against the very world he lives in.
Today when I’m not working as a creative director or drawing in the studio, I can usually be found in a kayak, on a trail or chopping wood somewhere in the Pacific Northwest.