Año Nuevo Path, acrylic on paper 10”x8”, 2015
With nearly two decades of landscape painting to look back on, there are continual themes in my work. The work reflects the places I regularly visit with a heavy dose of western national parks and state parks, especially along the California Coast as well as the deserts of California and the Southwest. So many times my paintings include a quiet road, or empty trail. That might be expected because I love road trips and hiking.
A few weeks back I was having a conversation about the author Thomas Hardy. He is one of my favorites and I have read all his major works. I was saying how many of his stories seem to begin with a traveller on a road or path. Suddenly I had this realization of this common thread between the literature I love and the landscapes I paint. Thomas Hardy was a genius that was able to render a landscape in writing better than many painters. Of course this could all be one big coincidence, but as an artist, I often wonder about those more subconscious influences that drive my work.
The painting above was painted last month, shortly after a nice hike at Año Nuevo State Park near Santa Cruz.