I was born in Portland, OR on June 10, 1944. I am the great grandnephew of Jack Wilkinson Smith, arguably the father of Southern California plein air landscapes. I was raised in the state of Jefferson (northern California). I have a master’s degree in geology with a thesis on some uses of native materials for art ceramics. I have lived in six states and Saudi Arabia and traveled extensively in The United States as well as in Western Europe.
My paintings include landscapes, cityscapes, and figurative works. I am mostly self-taught and influenced primarily by the paintings of Smith, Frank Tenney Johnson, Katherine Leighton, William McDermitt, Chile Hassam, Jean-Léon Gérôme, and Richard Schmid. I have dabbled in most art mediums, and taught ceramic sculpture, bronze casting, and jewelry (silver and gold smithing). I now paint mostly in acrylics but am also accomplished at oils and watercolors.
I paint in my own version of contemporary Western impressionism. I stopped painting with oils in 2015 and sold my oil painting supplies because of a late developing essential tremor and couldn’t hold steady when painting on an easel. I could still paint watercolors and tried gouache and then acrylics, all on a drafting table, hence I need to plan my compositions out in pencil before I start painting to keep the proportions and perspective right. My camera is my sketch pad now and I use a computer to alter, create, and compose my works. Working with photos would be absurd for me if I hadn’t studied live subject matter with pencil, paper, and a camera for many years.