I always look for paintings in the people I see. A moment unaware that reveals a glimpse of the person's inner nature waiting to be captured on canvas. The understanding of light and shadow which flows across flesh and bone is more than the ability to capture a likeness—it gives way to the deeper responsibility of representing the human soul. That's what makes being an artist exciting.

The challenge of this painting was to capture this man's rugged independence and inner strength knowing his unique individuality was forged by the generations who fought for freedom before him. Like them, he is American made. Hard working. Proud. Free.

I'm working with a limited palette of colors inspired by the nationally known artist Anders Zorn. My personal vision is focused on painting high contrast passages of light and dark to convey the emotional connection between the human soul and the American landscape.


Most of my brushes are Langnickle sables but I do use bristle brushes as well when needed. I prefer filberts which give me naturally softer edges from stroke to stroke. Capturing the interplay of edges in my figure work is something I really enjoy. This painting gave me a full spectrum of edges to study ranging all the way from sharp focus to completely lost.

At my demos, artists usually ask me what medium I use to mix into my paints so I'll mention it here which is Winsor & Newton's Liquin. I use other mediums as well but this product has grown on me and I find myself using it for most of my work these days. I use lot's of it in my shadow passages with little to none in the area of light. If you haven't tried it out I encourage you to do so and see how it works with your unique style and technique.

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