The Way of Art

I am a landscape artist

It began for me during a desert sunrise, deep in the Paria Wilderness. It was here I saw a life eternal, spread forth like some artistic blanket covering me from this spot to Yosemite, from the Olympics to the Badlands, from deep Mojave to the wet coast of Oregon. I sat this morning like I would come to sit many mornings, in poetic bliss. My camera framed and ready before me, my life spread out to the landscapes of uncertain future images. This simple artistic existence has been the primary guide of my life.

When the noise of life is quieted, when the distraction of living fades,
when sound is reduced to the soft murmur of a mountain stream,
It is here I find my way to art and in that art I am whole
That is the way of art for me
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Art Process + Inspiration

I seek balance found in the way of nature. My aim is to go deeper than the ornamental beauty of a place but to show you something more, to convey a sense of what it felt like to be there. I want to show you what I thought, more than what I saw. 

I've lugged my camera bag on every trip I've ever taken, woken up countless mornings in all kinds of weather imaginable, stepped on rattlesnakes in the Mojave, carried black widow spiders across scrubland, almost gotten swept away in rivers twice, crossed countless mountain passes with feet so blistered and calves so mosquito-bitten that I dared not take my boots off for fear I wouldn't get them back on...and was in utter artistic, nature happiness. 

My inspiration comes from sleeping under the stars, walking in open desert, hearing leaves rustling in wind, watching other creatives pursue their craft, reading passages of Thoreau, Muir, Hesse, Lopez or Han Shan. Connecting with nature inspires my photography.  Quiet, solitude, nature, observation, poetry, and strength push me to work my craft and creativity toward a perfection that stays just out of reach, but is always sought.

Each image has its own story. Sometimes it's the literal story of capturing the image, sometimes it's a metaphorical story within the image itself, but the internal process is always universal. I wander and observe; light, compositional elements, atmosphere. While analyzing these external elements I'm internally visualizing a final print, deciding what I want it to look and feel like. The intersection between the external and the internal is where all my technical decisions are made.

The process of making art is deeply personal. Each artist must find their own way, their own voice and the process for doing so is the foundation behind each finished piece. How an image is captured can be a fascinating journey into depths of personal realization. I'm not talking about tools and technique, I'm talking about discovery.

The discovery of art is as varied as the place and times I photograph. I'm obsessed with light, shape and composition.  When something of interests stands out, I'll stand quietly, empty of thought and let the scene flow around me. It's a moment of meditation that I use to inform my photography. I break apart the scene into it's foundational elements; light, a solitary rock, cloud movement, a lone mountain, trees. I then compose my version of the scene in front of me, working to isolate the defining element by limiting information.