I am an artist, not a writer. My Intent is not to educate, enlighten or inspire but rather to clarify my motivations to myself. I find that when I write down the thoughts and reasons that I take certain paths, it helps me to avoid repeating the same mistakes over and over again. Let's face it, authentic work evolves through a series of mistakes, lessons learned and options eliminated.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


“Lasiter” 31”x 38”
polished cement & dry pigment on panel
(click to enlarge)

Friday, April 22, 2011


“Blaylok” 31”x 38”
polished cement & dry pigment on panel
(click to enlarge"

Lately I have been working in a whirl wind, trying out new ideas and techniques as they pop into my head. Sometimes I start with a concept or intent but when I begin making marks, it often goes right out the window. I decided to take time to process what I have done lately, let it sink in and filter out what I have learned that was applicable to future work.

In this piece I have tried to distill my intent, sharpen my focus and simplify my execution. I studied my past work and asked myself, "What do I like, what feels like me?" Determining that, I discard everything else! It is a gradual process, I admit but I feel that I am pointed in the right direction.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Texas Bluebonnets

(click to enlarge)

I took these photos this weekend near my home in Cedar Hill. Even with the prolonged Texas drought and all the runaway wildfires, this hardy wildflower manages not to disappoint. I sat in this field and was overcome with the unbelievable sweet fragrance that left me slightly dizzy. This flower reminded me of the tenacity of my fellow artists who survive and flourish against all odds.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Harmony Grits

“Harmony Grits II” 31”x 38”
polished cement & dry pigment on panel
"click to enlarge"

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Kachina Revisited

“Kachina” 32.25”x 21.5”
polished cement & dry pigment on panel
(click to enlarge)

With the advent of my experimentation with adding oil paint to cured cement, I could not resist revisiting a prior work. This technique affords me additional control of the final look. I must be careful not to over-do.

Monday, April 11, 2011


“Nocturn” 19”x 15”
polished cement & dry pigment on panel
(click to enlarge)

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Re-Refining Succotash

“Succotash” 31”x 38”
polished cement & dry pigment on panel
(click t0 enlarge)

Have you ever had one of those pieces that just wasn't quite there? You have great expectations as it sets there in the corner waiting for you to give it that last little tweak. You like it but you don't love it. Do you leave well enough alone or risk ruining it with a bungled final touch? Sometimes you just have to be brave and take a blind leap. This piece was featured in progress in a previous entry (click here to see). What do you think, is it better or not?

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

How is Abstract Art Like Ballroom Dancing?

My wife and I were looking for something that we could do together other than eat out or go to the movies. We settled on ballroom dancing as a method of enjoying more quality time with each other. When I was young, dancing was more or less an individual sport. You stood on a crowded dance floor and did strange gyrations with no regard to whether your partner was even in the same room. In order to actually dance together, my wife would need to be able to anticipate and follow my steps. I realized we needed a plan. We decided to take lessons. If you break down dancing it is basically walking. I figured, I could walk. In the past when I wanted to learn a particular dance step, I would watch someone else perform the desired action and I would simply repeat it. I found that when taking lessons the act of walking had to be broken down to it's basic components so the student could grasp it's complexity. First you had to listen to the beat and be able to determine what particular walking pattern was appropriate. The man always starts with his left foot. The steps are dictated by hieroglyphic foot diagrams accompanied by verbal directions concerning the transference of weight and hip action, keeping in mind whether heel or toe contacted the dance floor first. All this is performed while quietly repeating to your self "slow, slow, quick, quick". Being an artist, and a visual learner, following this regimen resulted in a frustrated zombie like performance that reminded me of Michael Jackson's "Thriller" sans any discernible rhythm. The point I am trying to make here is that there are rules that have to be learned and then practiced. You have to be willing do a lot of really bad dancing over a long period of time. It takes time for basics to become imbedded into one's subconscious to the point that you don't even think about them. Here is the strange part, to be a really good dancer you have to be able to break the rules. So a good question would be, wouldn't it be easier and quicker not to learn the rules in the first place if the ultimate goal is to ignore them? I think it would be quite obvious to the casual observer, the difference in the performance between the person who never learned or understood the rules and the person who absorbed and processed them to the point that they were no longer bound by them.

Abstract art, or for that matter, any form of art, is subject to rules pertaining to the use of form, line, texture, color, balance and rhythm along with many other factors. Basic fundamentals that need to be learned practiced and understood. If not, the artists is limited in creative options and potential. Some lucky few, intuitively understand what makes art work. Artists often speak of working on auto pilot and not over thinking their art, relying on gut instinct. This works best when those instincts are grounded in sound knowledge and experience. A good abstract painter does not paint non-objectively because he has to, but because he needs to.

Monday, April 4, 2011


“Meapaso” 25”x 20.5”
polished cement & dry pigment on panel
(click to enlarge)

How about some really bright cadmium orange!

Friday, April 1, 2011


“Happenstance” 31”x 38”
polished cement & dry pigment on panel
(click to enlarge)

Here I am trying to balance a calm color field against a more complex area. I have embedded nylon drywall tape in the surface to create texture and tie the two areas together.