While I have been photographing for many years, little time has been given over to painting. Sometimes I tell myself it's because I am busy (aren't we all) but the truth is that painting scares me in a way that making photographs does not.
Because I've shot thousands and thousands of frames (perhaps millions) over the course of my photographic career, I've developed a language and approach that feels fundamental to my being. And making photographs is a very natural and unforced part of my everyday life. Painting, for me, is not.
It's a series of choices: head upstairs to my studio, bypass the computer, turn on some music, pick up a paintbrush... I have not (yet) spent hours and hours practicing and I long for a sense of rhythm and an unforced approach. But the call keeps coming, despite my awkward resistance, so I will answer and begin.
A safe but still exciting place to start is working within a grid. For years I've been fascinated by grids, as was my father who also painted.
Here's a detail from an acrylic painting from a few years back:
A detail from a much larger and yet to be finished acrylic painting:
And a watercolor from when I began working methodically in a 10" x 10" format and exploring the use of frisket:
Currently, I am working on an 18" x 22" watercolor based on this smaller version I painted about a month ago. With a narrow selection of colors and repeating lines, it's a meditative activity that I can dive into with relative ease. Once finished, however, I think it might be time to let loose!