I live to paint. I sincerely hope that when I die I will die with a paint brush in my hand. I have many responsibilities that keep me from my work. My life seems to be a constant struggle to have time for what I consider to be my profession. I make part of my living selling my artwork and teach part-time at Radford University. I am married to an amazing poet, Clyde Kessler, who is also a self-taught naturalist and is working on putting out a CD on Butterflies of the Blue Ridge. We have one great son, Alan, who is the subject of a number of my paintings. Much of my artwork is about this beautiful mountain region, though I paint other scenes from other locales, figures and still lifes.
I am mesmerized by the continual interplay of colors in the mountains. I would have to agree with Claude Monet that all one can get is a "naive impression". It is impossible to capture all the colors and textures of one moment. My struggle is not to capture them but to use what I can capture in my own unique expression i.e. my emotional reaction to beauty. I am always being told that my work is like that of Vincent Van Gogh. My landscapes have the burning intensity that he has in his. I can understand why he felt like he was being "gripped by the throat" when he painted. He was expressing his reaction to what he was seeing and his inner expression.
Right now I am working on three medium sized paintings of an area near Rock Castle Gorge, an evening scene of Radford's Memorial Bridge, and some swamp flowers near Bisset Park. I base my paintings on photographs that I take and then interpret the colors and textures to express my reaction to each scene. I take pride in complicated systems of brushwork that are unique to me.
My dream, which I am sure I share with all artists, is for a rich patron to find my work and make it possible for me to work all the time. I can't eat them and I can't take them with me. I have paintings in private collections in eleven states. I hope to increase that number. Art agents are as scarce as hen's teeth. If you would like to view my work you can visit