Watercolor is a medium that employs a good deal of trickery beyond the brushwork and most of it revolves around different
methods of masking. I utilize several different tapes depending on which type and brand of watercolor paper I am using. For
sections of paintings that require a great deal of detail, usually I will use liquid frisket. Additionally I use several non-
traditional brushes in a typical painting. I have found oil/acrylic flat brushes of varying sizes and bristle stiffness to be
particularly useful for achieving smooth washes and softened edges. Paper selection is critical to a successful composition
and I have found that if the image I am working on involves a great deal of detail, a heavy (300lb) hot-press paper works best,
and if the image requires predominantly broader washes I will generally use a 300lb cold-press paper.
Generally I will utilize whatever media is necessary to achieve an effect. In the process of trying to capture the look of the
natural world, I find it is mandatory to use materials that best mimic my observations. By adding opaque white to traditional
watercolor I can achieve a better range of textures as well as color, and if the opaque white is acrylic, I can achieve layered
effects as well. For some compositions I have added the use of pastel and I have found the use of colored pencil extremely
useful for fast touch-ups of uneven washes or paper imperfections.
I have created monotypes and monoprints with watercolors, water-based inks, oil paints, and oil-based inks. Some
compositions have utilized both oil and water based media in the same piece. Most of these prints were created by painting
my image on frosted Mylar, allowing the image to dry, and subsequently printing the image at a later date by running it
through an etching press on pre-dampened paper. My monotypes are unique pieces that usually give me one print and a
"ghost" impression made from the residual image left on the Mylar after the primary print has been pulled. These "ghost"
impressions are usually further developed in various media by drawing and painting directly over the impression. My
monoprints utilize all of the same techniques as my monotypes with the addition of some type of printed or fixed grid in the
composition. For example I might create an image where part of it would be printed lithographically or by silkscreen, and
this printed area would become part of the hand drawn composition. Therefore in my monoprints some elements of the
composition are unique while others may share a common printed element. Generally, my monoprints are identified on the
margins as "1, 2, 3 etc / edition size."
Many of my compositions are created on Masonite or Plexiglas panels. I buy the Masonite panels pre-primed in art supply
stores or sometimes I will make my own. Recently, I have begun to use Plexiglas, in various colors, as a panel material. I
use acrylic to paint on these surfaces and I find that since they can be sanded to a degree that there is virtually no texture, I
can achieve the greatest detail in any of my paintings on these surfaces. When the image is completed I glue the panel on
to a larger piece of birch plywood that has been primed on all sides. It is the birch plywood that fits into the rabbet of the
frame so that the panel "floats" within the frame.
To date, all of my paintings on canvas have been done in acrylic but I am considering experimenting with alkyd oil paint or
even water soluable oil paint to achieve some complex blending effects that would be difficult to get with the fast-drying
The technique I use to make a lithographic plate is actually very similar to creating a plate for a monotype. Instead of painting
on Mylar with watercolor or water-based ink, I paint the image in black acrylic and black prismacolor pencil. When this has
dried I have essentally created a photographic "positive". I then use this "positive" to make a contact print on a photo-
sensitized, positive developing, lithography plate. This plate, when processed and developed, is quite durable and ready to
use in the edition. If, after printing the first plate, corrections or additions are necessary, I merely have to make a new drawing
and a new plate to further enhance the image. While these plates are designed to create thousands of impressions, I have
arbitrarily decided to limit my original prints to edition sizes below 100.
My collage compositions tend to be combinations of commercially printed papers and images that I have created by hand
on separate pieces of paper. The compositions are adhered to 4 ply museum rag board with archival adhesives, or
permanent acid free adhesives.
This is a newer category of printmaking utilizing either state of the art Iris printers originally from Scitex or newer wide-format
printers from Epson, Canon, Roland, Hewlett Packard and others. Original images are scanned into the computer, refined
in an image editing program like Adobe Photoshop, and output on a computer-driven inkjet printer. These images have no
discernible dot pattern and produce images that have all of the vibrancy and scale of the original. They provide an excellent
low-cost flexible way to collect my work. Originally I only used this technology to produce high-quality reproductions of
images created in other media. However, I am currently exploring ways of incorporating digitally created passages in my
monoprints and I am also developing a series of digitally manipulated photographic editions based on several new themes.