I'm a child of the Midwest and I can’t remember a time when I couldn’t draw. When I was young, there was a small expectation that I’d one day work as an artist, but drawing became more of a tool used for other purposes rather than a form of self expression. By the time I was seven, I had become an avid birder, and drawing became a way to understand birding.
As I grew older, rock and roll replaced art, but after graduation, I discovered I could draw rock stars, and gained some admiration among my friends. My girlfriend at the time suggested I pursue art at the local junior college, and it was there that I became aware of the oil painting process. By the time I was twenty, I was dabbling in oils and attempting to paint portraits, while working part time jobs. I painted a portrait of my four siblings and myself from a photograph as a gift for our mother. This launched a disappointing portrait painting career in a town that was financially struggling.
By the mid 1980s, I was living in Milwaukee, married, working at a paint company, and attempting to start a cartooning career. Eventually, I switched back to oil painting, first doing a handful of portraits before landing a commission to paint a donor wall at the Wauwatosa Public Library. I started painting neighborhood landscapes, and that led me to plein air painting. Through the late 1990s until the end of the first decade of the twenty first century, I regularly painted plein air, painting close to a hundred works, while working first as a color matcher, and then as a chemist at the paint factory. I was also president of the League Of Milwaukee Artists, a non gratis job that included booking exhibitions, jurying new members, and public speaking. During that time, I exhibited in a number of shows in Wisconsin, including exhibitions in Milwaukee, West Bend, Racine, and Manitowoc, occasionally winning awards. I also showed in Chicago, Illinois, and in Sacramento, California. At the latter location, I also won an award. I offered my work for sale through galleries in Madison, Thiensville, and Shorewood, Wisconsin, with several of my works now in the Northwestern Mutual Insurance Company collection.
After my wife and I moved out of the city, my job became more demanding, so I took a decade away from painting. A few years ago, I had retired. With my newly found free time, I established a podcast on the history of the movies, MATINEES ON MAIN STREET. You can listen to it wherever podcasts are available. I also returned to plein air painting with twelve new pieces painted in 2022.