The way transparent layers of watercolor overlap to create a new shape; the beauty of a torn edge of paper; the availability of colors in papers when paints are too expensive; the unique form and personality of common faces. Simply, this is how my style evolved.
As my work changed through the years from painting to collage, I returned to the basic materials of my youth like paper, glue, scissors, and pens. Using an endless supply of colorful magazine and book pages, junk mail, old letters, and memorabilia provided infinite possibilities and surprises for my representational and oftentimes silly figures and landscapes.
My inspiration begins with ordinary, not so pretty, people and things found in old photo albums, magazines, and around town; and I’m moved by family gatherings, by women’s fashion in the early 1900’s, and by everyday faces and personalities of people I meet day to day.
I plan my work days in advance, often dreaming of the finished product. Ideas lead into research; research turns into sketches! When the composition is completely drawn in, I plan and gather the color palette from my stockpile of papers just like the painter gathers paints. I tear, cut, and glue shapes of paper to fill in areas beginning in the background and working forward, as if working with paint. To show emphasis, I outline each shape with line once the glue is dry. I create movement in my work by producing the impression that the characters are looking in different directions at once like Picasso’s famous cubist portraits and David Hockney’s ‘joiners.’ These processes not only bring the viewer in for a closer look when the piece is complete but creates an energetic and tense composition.
You can forget about any deep analytical mix of emotions and metaphysics in my work. Rather, it’s comical. It’s familiar. It’s sometimes campy, sometimes unbecoming. It’s a mix of delight and shenanigans. It sometimes criticizes the aesthetics of popular culture. And sometimes it’s a feel good family time of yesteryear. My hope is that you find some familiarity, similarities and joy with my stylized characters to your own life. Really, I just hope you smile a little bit when you see my work. That is enough for me.