Thursday, October 19, 2017

Proportions and Regulating Lines

Since antiquity, artists and architects have relied on regulating lines and mathematical ratios to guide the proportions and arangement of their work. The use of these techniques helps a composition 'look right'.

There are many different geometric compositional systems such as the golden ratio or the rule of thirds.  In this case we are starting with a square image and will therefore use a ratio of the square root of two: the ratio between the diagonal of the square and the side of the square.

'Winter Light' mixed media painting with regulating lines

As you can see, the elements of the composition are arranged within a framework of related ratios. The relationship between the the dimensions shown in the image can be expressed mathematically:

Besides helping to guide a balanced composition, these mathematical relationships add one more layer to these layered images!

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Three Frames of Reference

I want to put my thinking about my work in context. I think of this context as a series of frames that my art operates within.

The first frame is one of values. The context here is that doubt is good. Uncertainty is helpful. To develop a better understanding of the world, we first have to accept that we don't know everything, that our thinking and ideas are fallible.

The second frame is one of substance. The world is not permanent or immutable. Everything and every moment is constantly passing away. Conversely, and on the bright side, there is a future full of new potential.

The third frame is aesthetic. Its a belief that art communicates in ways that are beyond what can be put into words. Art has to speak without words.

'As in a Mirror' mixed media on aluminum 2017 20W x 20H inches

There are of course many more frames of reference than these, both conscious and unconscious. There's everything from culture and history to media and materials. The three frames I describe situate my work within a larger universe of art. 

Tuesday, October 3, 2017


Compression builds up potential energy that can fuel rapid expansion. These Compression Paintings expand inwards. Behind the surface of the image, large vistas reach into the deep space of perspective.

'East and West' 2017, Mixed Media on Aluminum, 20W x 20H inches

The artwork, a physically static object, moves as you look at it. It both represents and mimics the behaviour of clouds and waves. As soon as you've seen something, it's gone again.  Each cloud and wave is unique and fleeting.  The pattern of waves, the behaviour of clouds is unchanging and eternal.