My show of new oil paintings titled “Luminosity”, opens Aug. 1 from 1-4 at Jo Beale Gallery in Peggy’s Cove, Nova Scotia . Luminosity is the basis of my feeling in painting these canvases. Luminosity, light and color are such a big part of my personal experience of the East Coast. I find myself surrounded by luminosity and persuaded to respond through painting. The beauty I experience within simple moments of observation pushes and pulls me in the direction of making paintings. In my work, I try to weave together a fictional depiction of many moments, all linked by light and color. All of the paintings in the show are connected through my common concern for the observation of light. This light is a low-angled, northern light with long and deep shadows. Light illuminates all aspects of our environment, from rugged and rocky coasts to simple roadside weeds. I’m an explorer of light and its effects. My motifs are the coastal waters and lakes of Nova Scotia, however I’ve included two landscape paintings based on the fields and vistas of Prince Edward Island.
There are two mains streams running throughout all of my painting, a naturalistic stream and a subjective stream. My subjective paintings are based more on my imagination and personal vision. My naturalistic paintings look a lot like how things appear. In either style, I look to inhabit all the parts of my painting surfaces with a luminosity arising from light and color. The painting Sheds Along the Sea is a subjective seascape, not so literal a depiction, but more an imagined place evolved through process. I sometimes draw parts of paintings like flowers, roadside weeds, rocks, boats and sheds. When I have a few parts drawn in a way I like, I began to reassemble them into a picture, moving their positions and changing their scale on paper like a director sets prop positions for a film scene. This painting evolved with a certain emphasis, exaggeration and feeling based on these movable parts coming to rest as the finished piece.
The Wind Around Here and Early Evening Light are examples of my more naturalistic or realistic approach. I’ve been working with the notion of bringing a more subjective view to my naturalistic work. In other words, I’m trying to distill what I see into more simplified and personal forms that have meaning for me within the context of the painting. These two examples are not specific places. They only exist on the canvas and they came about through drawing all the elements and re-assembling them into a pictorial composition. I’m not trying to improve on nature, but rather trying to pick and choose what I enjoy and what I find works as image. Please enjoy the work and thank you for reading this.