The Alaskan landscape, Alaskan Native Art, dreams, memories, music, and mythology all influence my work. As I was born and raised in Alaska, and also attended the University of Alaska in Fairbanks and Juneau, I consider myself an Alaskan Artist. My work focuses on aspects of living and growing up in Alaska: the isolation, both personal and cultural, the gloomy weather, and the short intense summers. I also find inspiration in the characteristics of small communities where the past is often visible in the present.
My art is psychologically geological and meteorological. The layering of paint mimics the deposition and erosive forces of geology and the weather of Southeast Alaska: mist and clouds obscuring and creating forms, and winter snows covering the land. I see in our psychology the same forces: experience and emotion eroding and depositing, outside forces obscuring, emphasizing, and creating real and imagined experiences. My work recreates this deposition and erosion of emotion, memory, and experience. I initially sketch my ideas on paper, canvas, or panel. Working on top of this sketch, I apply acrylic paint combined with charcoal, graphite, or pastel in layers. With each layer, I will add or subtract shapes, lines, or color, holding the original idea in my mind as I work. I work on numerous paintings at once; while one painting dries, I work on another.
I work with acrylic paint because I find the quick drying time helpful and prefer to not work with solvents. Also, it enables multiple layers without compromising a painting’s permanency.
The title of a painting comes from the original idea. They are often a reference to pop culture, myths, or music. However, I only offer the name as a hint, allowing the viewer to bring their own emotions, memory, and experience for a personal interpretation.