​On Painting Sentimental Subjects

The other day I shared a recent painting that depicts the garden outside my parents’ home. This garden is a sentimental subject to me. To you, it’s a garden. To me, it’s part of my childhood home. I grew up with this garden outside my room. I know where it is in relation to the house. I … Read more

Progress Is a Double-Edged Sword

Chontele has spent the last week hanging some of my old paintings around the house (I’ll show you a photo once it’s done). It’s an interesting look back through time. I can remember painting every one of them and the circumstances of my life at the time. I also find it fascinating how one’s perspective … Read more

Misty Lake Through The Trees

Here’s a recent painting based on the Montville hinterlands: Misty Lake Through the Trees. Chontele, Elora, and I spent a weekend there recently. We took a short walk around the estate and ended up at a secluded lookout. A lake glimmered in the distance, barely visible through the trees and mist. White light reflected off the … Read more

Who Determines What Is Great Art?

I had a question a while back: Who determines what is great art? The short answer is, you do, but it won’t feel like that. The art world is filled with opinions on the matter. Historians, critics, collectors, curators, media. Most of which don’t create art, but have deep pockets and loud voices. These opinions are … Read more

Spring Landscape by Arthur Wesley Dow

Today’s painting inspiration is Spring Landscape by Arthur Wesley Dow. Some key observations: There’s a pleasant contrast between the intricate trees and the flat color shapes of the greenery, sky, and path. Notice how the trees inject clarity into the painting and command attention. They also give context to the flat color shapes. It’s similar to child … Read more

On Finishing a Painting

I just finished this large, 30 by 40 inch painting. It depicts a fiery sunset over the ocean. My friend took the reference photo. He works on a ship and gets to witness some stunning sights from the deck. A painting of this size would usually take me 4-10 hours depending on the complexity. But this … Read more

Fechin on Technique

Many aspiring artists think about technique as if it’s a rigid toolbox. But it’s much more like a language, or music, or a dance. Fechin has some wise words on the matter: “Technique should be considered only as a means to an end but never as the end itself. To me, technique should be unlimited, … Read more

Two Recent Paintings and a Lesson on Simplification

I have decided to make 2022 a year of busy painting. I want my walls to be filled with color and life by the end of it. Here are two recent ones plus the reference photos I took a few months back. They depict the turquoise waters and rocky shores of Noosa. These paintings are a … Read more

A Lesson on Atmospheric Perspective

Chontele, Elora, and I recently got back from a short trip to Montville in Queensland, Australia. It’s a quiet town in the Sunshine Coast hinterlands. The weather was miserable by usual standards, but it felt right for the area and its lush plants and sweeping hills. A dense mist filled the air. Even at midday, … Read more

For My Eyes Only

I share most of the paintings I create with you, but there are many you don’t see. Paintings that exist for my eyes only, not to be shared, exhibited, or sold. Created merely for my enjoyment. These paintings might not provide any tangible benefits, but they are an essential part of the art life. They … Read more