A year ago today I left for Italy on a 3 week trip to explore the art and culture of this amazing country. Feeling the intensity of light, the sensuous smells and fragility of this ancient landscape made me glad I was a painter.
Most of my large format paintings are done in the studio. But the richness of the essence of that painting originates out in the environment, or painting “en plein air”. Occasionally I pack up my travel paints, a few brushes and several small canvases and head for a field somewhere. There, I choose what excites me, where the light will travel, where the color resides. I paint for hours at a time in total relaxation, oblivious to the fact whether or not my painting will succeed. What I learn out in nature is my source of inspiration. I can truly see the color of the sky fading from an intense blue to a soft lavender as it meets the chartreuse horizon of spring.
If you’ve never painted outside, or haven’t done so in years, pack up your paints and your senses and do it today.
My latest creation has truly come from the studio, after nearly 40 years of working as a graphic designer, photographer and painter. My new book, “Points of Inspiration: An Artist’s Journey with Painting and Photography” has just been published through my design firm, Brook Design Group, in 2015. A labor of love for the past 2 years, this book has been on my bucket list to do, and well, it’s now miraculously available in stores! From the Nevada Museum of Art and the Oakland Museum bookstores, to Dakota Art Stores in Washington, to all of the wonderful stores in my own home town of Nevada City and Grass Valley, California. (Oh yes, and on my website.)
The most wonderful part of publishing this book has been receiving reviews from readers, and especially from long-time friends. I hope you will enjoy reading the blog post from a dear friend and wonderful author, Eleanor Vincent. It tells the story of our connection and how the book is viewed from her eyes. I am truly honored.