never wanted to be an artist. I had other
dreams. Drawing little pictures paled in comparison to flying an F-14 Tomcat. I was about eight or nine then, at an age when anything seemed possible. Becoming a fighter pilot was just a matter of "growing up."

As we grow older, our dreams tend to mature with us. Flights of fancy become grounded, more practical. Well, for most of us.

   
           
 

n high school, while my friends had their sights on becoming the next generation of engineers, I had my own plans. I was going to be a fly fishing writer. It was going to be great, traveling across the country, fishing all the great rivers, and then writing about my experiences. I took a liking to writing thanks to my freshman English teacher. Painting pictures with words, creating a mood and rhythm in the narrative, it was all very exciting to me.  

Like most freshmen, I took art for the easy "A." My feelings towards art ranged from dislike to borderline contempt, due to a junior high art class which consisted of spending most of the quarter writing calligraphy.

During my sophomore year my opinion started to change when I was introduced to oil painting. Graphite pencils, colored pencils, nor scratchboard, could spark any interest. Oil painting was different, something clicked, and I instantly loved it. I still wanted to do the whole writing and fishing thing, but perhaps there would be some time to do a little painting on the side.  

With very few creative writing assignments my junior year, the passion for writing slowly faded away. Fortunately a new flame was kindled. What initially attracted me to writing was still there except instead of words, I was using paint to create pictures. I knew nothing of the different fields of art, but I knew I wanted to paint. My art teacher provided the encouragement and direction I needed and my parents were supportive. When it came time to apply for college, I sent my applications to just art schools.


n the fall of 2000, I began attendance at the Laguna College of Art and Design (formerly Art Institute of Southern California). For the four years I was there, I developed and honed my technique, ended a six year love affair with oil painting, started a new one with watercolor, and rubbed shoulders with some very talented artists. I had inspiring teachers who helped and provided guidance. The talent at the school and especially my graduating class constantly pushed me to better myself. It all went by so fast.

Telling stories with pictures is what I love about creating art. My hope is that some child will see my paintings in a book and get the same delight seeing it as I did painting it. Perhaps that same child will come across the book again as an adult and it'll bring back memories long past. Mother's gentle voice, the glass of water before you say goodnight, the soft glow of the nightlight, drifting off to sleep with thoughts of adventure and a world of infinite possibilities.


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/ my favorite river
 
/ my first oil painting
   
 

/ first painting to have an impact on me

   
  / my first watercolor painting