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About the Artist

It's a familiar story: artist works many years at ‘real’ job, compromising soul’s vision; hits a breaking point, throws caution to the wind, and devotes themself to art. Famous names like Andy Warhol, Gustav Klimt and Paul Gaugin come to mind. But, surely, there are legions of obscure artists, not to mention ignominious failures, in this category. Success is hardly assured. It’s a full-bodied experience: scary as shit, wonderfully liberating, somehow pre-ordained, a personal apocalypse and baptism of fire. All hyperbolic cliches apply.

I spent my twenties, let’s say ‘apprenticing,’ with Hollywood’s greatest image makers—David Fincher, Robert Richardson, John Toll, Dariusz Wolski, Jan de Bont, and Harris Savides—then worked about twenty-five years as a Director of Photography. My career highlights include iconic, award-winning music videos with YouTube views in the hundreds of millions for artists like Greenday, Avril Lavigne and Korn, traveling the world to shoot hundreds of commercials for international brands, and the 2005 Sundance Film Festival best-dramatic-feature Forty Shades of Blue. You can see a more complete list of credits on my IMDB page.

Working in Hollywood for thirty-five years surely affected my artistic DNA. But, as that life has receded into the distance, two truths have emerged:  
  1. There’s zero overlap in the Venn Diagram showing a) how you make commercials and b) how you make art. 
  2. Being an artist requires total fidelity, meaning it’s not something you fit in between commercial gigs. I tried that for about twenty years, and only three pictures from those decades made the cut. Effectively, I’ve had to create my oeuvre from scratch. 
My ‘oeuvre’ is California landscape photography and oil painting. For the color and the black and white landscape prints, I drawn on my years in the photographic arts to express my deep connection with Califiornia scenery.  The paintings are generally based on the photographs, which I make by shooting (mostly) expired film (read: NOT digital).**

There are many important details about my relationship with California, and the influences and inspirations with my artwork. You can find these particulars by scrolling down to the longer descriptions towards the bottom of each web page and by mousing over ‘see full description & specifications’ on each work's page.  

 **A NOTE ABOUT DIGITAL VS. FILM: I know my way around digital image capture and digital sensors. I used it professionally for a decade. But I’d worked with film the twenty years previous. So please trust that I really know the difference. And there’s just no comparison. I’ll explore this topic, among others, in my newsletter, so be sure to subscribe.


Inspiration

There's a larger story that I tell with my photographs: this world, reality, and our relationship with reality is mysterious and uncertain. Further, what we presume to be fixed and solid is evanescent and dreamlike. The artifacts and phenomena I shoot, the filtration, the film I shoot with, the way I develop the negative and scan it is all aimed at telling the larger story that reality is no more fixed or permanent than the glimmering play of sunlight on the sea and clouds in a windswept sky.

Techniques

All my work is captured with film. I shoot with Pentax 6x7 and Mamiya RB67 medium format cameras, and develop, scan and retouch all my own negatives. I also shoot instant film. For earlier work I used Polaroid 4x5 film. Now that Polaroid isn't available, I use expired Fuji FP-100.

career highlights

Feature Films: Forty Shades of Blue, Grand Jury Prize, Sundance Film Festival, 2005.

Music Videos: Greenday, Time of Your Life/Good Riddance; Avril Lavigne, Nobody's Home; Korn, Freak on a Leash

As Hollywood Assistant Photographer: The Game, Seven, Lethal Weapon 3, Basic Instinct, Maverick, Demolition Man


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