The work still begins with a hot cup of tea and the tactile feel of the morning paper – local, national, international news continues to feed my appetite for image making, with many of those images stored for future reference. As a Durham Public School art educator for over twenty years, this practice kept me informed about the local state of things that impacted my students – triumphs in the classroom, on and off the fields, too many tragedies – everything in between.
Most of my current works focus on relief prints, graphics, and drawings in response to the daily news. “Family Matters,” my continually evolving marriage equality relief print series, celebrates the diverse, positive, loving relationship possibilities essential for a society where liberty and justice prevails for all. While the national controversy surrounding the topic of marriage equality has been “resolved” by the Supreme Court opinion June 26th, other topics: income inequality, food insecurity, subpar housing, inaccessible higher education afflict many in the richest country in the world.
Despite the incessant national, state, local, and personal storms, I seek refuge in art making. Currently my primary media is relief printmaking – a contemplative meditation. By carving away material, bit by bit, the lengthy process culminates with inking the plate, placing the paper, hand burnishing, checking, then carefully pulling the image. The test image offers its own surprises and pleasures, and most frequently, the need for additional carving. The process is repeated until the image is finalized, yet no two are exactly the same.
My larger, mixed media works comment on bullying, violence, greed, and corruption. Intermittently, the discipline of working from observation results in a variety of works and media; graphic design work continues to promote a return to moderation – No Right Turn – via buttons and t-shirts.
Promoting peace and justice through visual means by literally drawing on the news, I hope people are moved to reflect on the images and ideas.