How to Grow Roses

                               “Lush Life” oil painting 30 x 30 inches on cradled panel

I’ve been thinking about my career as an artist and because of recent interviews, I have been reflective. Most of the time I stay in the present moment and rarely do very much delving in the past, but recently I paused to think about the most important influences on what I choose to focus on in my artwork, both paintings and drawings. It’s easy to pick the most important influence from my early years, my father of course. In his way he was a catalyst for me arriving at art as my life’s work. Of course, I wanted to be like him, curious, creative, inventive. Not an easy task but with his small hints to me, I think I understood what my future would be. Three gifts to me that remain important were a book he gave me for my birthday when I was probably seven years old, “How to Grow Roses”, a 120 camera and a subscription every year to National Geographic, which continued until I was in college. He wasn’t in my life for long but those seemingly small gifts were so appreciated by me that they took on rather mythic proportions. As I continued my journey with my art career I realize that the greatest gift to me was his intense curiosity. Though my curiosity overwhelms me at times, I find it to be rewarding as I continue to find images, interests, hobbies, and so much more everyday.

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