I cannot begin to count the miles I’ve walked to find the subjects for my art. I seldom leave home, if at all, without my camera or a sketchbook, and of course, my imagination. Tangled driftwood at Kalaloch becomes Cerberus while trees stranded by the low tide with their roots exposed, become a procession of Shamans marching across the Nisqually Delta. A simple crack in a sidewalk in Eatonville, Washington is enough to make me pause and take notice of its composition and contrasting textures. I am surrounded by life copying art.
But that is during the light of day. What happens after the sun has set and I’ve laid down my brushes and pens for the day, closing the studio for the evening? Where do I go then? The answer usually lies between the pages of a book. At first glance my library seems a random collection; a mish-mash of genre and subjects, most added to the growing accumulation, on the basis of a chance encounter. Many of my books have been purchased for no other reason than the notion, that someday I will need this book. Deep within their pages, my mind many miles from home, I can find inspiration when I least expect it. A quote by James Abbot McNeil Whistler, a maxim by Niccolo Machiavelli, or a letter from Vincent to his brother Theodore Van Gogh may move me in some way, or at least cause me to view an old concept in a new light. On the other hand, I might simply curl up with The Arabian Nights while waiting for the light of a new day.
Some books are meant to be read over and over again. A few of my favorites are listed below
My Name is Asher Lev by Chaim Potok
Provenance by Laney Salisbury & Aly Sujo
The Short Stories of Saki