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As a kid who drew constantly throughout childhood, I became an adolescent who let that joy languish. I remain grateful that when I arrived at college and realized I had no idea why I was there, I had the privilege of being able to ask myself if indeed I had a passion. It was creating — I needed to make things. I transferred to the School of Art and received a BFA from the University of Michigan, concentrating in painting and photography, then shifted attention and continued through Doctoral Candidacy in Film Studies at Michigan. I worked in the Film Industry as an Assistant Director for seven years on projects such as Goonies and the original Top Gun, and have been apologizing for Howard the Duck since 1986.

After walking away from Hollywood to be the parent-at-home for my sons, I became a teacher of Photography and Film Studies at a public high school in Sacramento, California, where I also taught Studio Art, American Literature, and Critical Thinking. Eventually it was my teaching that brought me back to the passion for creative image-making. Often while painting I’ve had the fleeting sensation that I’m close to creating music, or that my canvas is somehow my dance partner, that even the Photoshop screen is moving in rhythm with me. It's in making images where the words of Stephen Sondheim ring most true for me: I must be “finishing a hat, where there never was a hat.”

I grew up a rootless Midwesterner, a corporate brat shuttled from town to town, belonging nowhere specific. The works in my digital painting portfolio, “Mountain to Valley to Sea,” and my portfolio of photos are less about capturing travel memories and more so a deeper engagement, a meditation upon the beauty of where I now live that is meant to offer a sense of having arrived at a place I was always intended to be — my adopted roots. I’ve crisscrossed the Bay Area, Southern and Northern California, and the Central Valley hundreds of times and have been in love with this boundless topography for over 40 years, all the while absorbing a serenity from the landscape, a sense of having come home. It is these meditative moments upon a place imbued with wonder — undulating farmland, the incessant movement along the shoreline, the mountainsides both rocky and verdant — that I want to share.

In painting I work from my own reference photographs. As a dual major in painting and photography while completing my BFA, I'm still fully engaged in both mediums. While a photograph can give us “the skin of the world” (Sontag) in exquisite detail, and intensify the abstract qualities of elements such as line and texture, a painting with its re-worked layers can also give us a sense of time and depth, of experience, of a view that rewards looking again and again. My camera is my sketchbook, and the flexibility of photo editing allows me to explore the infinite possibilities in a 2-dimensional design. Shape, color, and value can be intensified, transformed, until ultimately my work on canvas becomes an exploration not of how to reproduce what the camera saw, but of what the painting needs in order to become its independent self, freed in its final form of any obligation to the source photo.

For this I’ve found oils to be ideal. As a surface I'm suited to canvas and linen, as they responds well to the vigor of my brush and knife work, the spreading, scraping, re-working, and finally glazing of the much-churned surface. The oils are water-miscible to allow me to work without irritating solvents. My deepest influences in painting — and even indirectly in photography — have been Paul Cézanne, Edward Hopper, and Gregory Kondos, as well as a number of 20th Century California impressionists; I feel their dimensional push-pull whenever finding a 2-D design in the 3-D world. Whether it's through brush or lens, every canvas and every camera frame I compose compels me to capture the light and textures and rhythms of California and its endless visual treasure.

Juried Exhibitions
 
Blue Line Arts, Solo Exhibit “Art at Work,” Roseville (CA) Civic Center, 2024
KBM Art Gallery, “Radiant Red” virtual gallery, 2024
KBM Art Gallery, “Tranquil and Thankful” virtual gallery, 2023
Elk Grove Fine Arts Center, “California Gold,” 2023
Lodi Community Art Center Photography Show, 2023
Northern California Arts, “Bold Expressions,” 2023
Santa Cruz Art League, “92nd Annual California Landscape Exhibition,” 2023
2023 California State Fair, three photos; Category: Black & White, Landscape
2023 California State Fair, three paintings; Category: Oil/Brushwork, Landscape
Gallery 1337 at Art Works Downtown, San Rafael, “Landscape Perspectives,” 2023
Elk Grove Fine Arts Center (CA), “Wide Open Spaces,” 2023
Sacramento Fine Arts Center, “Black and White,” 2023
Viewpoint Photographic Art Center: Solo Exhibit: “Farms of Yolo County,” 2023
Red Bluff Art Gallery (CA) “Furry Friends” virtual gallery, 2023
Elk Grove Fine Arts Center (CA), “All Creatures Great and Small” Exhibition, 2023
YoloArts Gallery 625, “Near and Far: The World in Focus,” April 2023
Viewpoint Photographic Art Center: “Essential Elements: Earth, Water, Wind, and         Fire” April-May 2023
Viewpoint Photographic Art Center: “Farms of Yolo County,” May-June 2023
Light Space & Time 12th Online Art Gallery, “Seascapes” Art Exhibition, 2022 YoloArts Gallery 625, “Emerging Artists,” 2021
Pence Gallery: “Exhibit It!” 2021 (non-juried)
Auctioned fundraising work: KVIE/PBS public television, 2020, 2022; YoloArts.org,     2019-2023
Inside Publications 20th Anniversary Cover Art exhibit, Fall 2015
 
Public Art
 
Five prints in patient waiting areas, UC Davis Health Tschannen Eye Institute; Commissioned via <bethjonesartconsultant.com>
 
Publications
 
Black Box Gallery, “Black and White: 2022” 
Cover art, Inside Sacramento Publications “Inside Land Park” 2013, “Inside Land Park,” June 2019, “Inside Arcade” March, 2021, “Inside Pocket” April, 2022
Cover photography, New Times magazine
City•Smart Guidebook: Sacramento, Avalon Travel Publishing, author and photographer
 
Awards
 
Featured Artist, YoloArts.org, May 2023
Honorable Mention, YoloArts Art Farm Juried Exhibit, Kurt Fishback juror
Special Recognition for Excellence in Art, Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery, 2022
 
Commission
 
“Father and Son CycloCross” Wong family, 2020, 24”x36” oil on canvas
 
Relevant Employment
 
2008 to 2016: Teacher, Visual and Performing Arts, C.K. McClatchy High School, Sacramento, CA. Courses taught:  Camera Composition (Photography); Film Studies; Yearbook Advisor; Introductory Studio Art
  • Lead Teacher, Department of Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) 2015-16
  • Co-founder VAPA, C.K. McClatchy High School
• Career and Technical Education (CTE) Credential: Arts, Media, and Entertainment. 
  • Single Subject English Clear Credential; Supplemental Clear Credential for Introduction to Art, Drawing and Painting, and Photography
 
Graduate: Directors Guild of America Assistant Directors Training Program, 1979-81 (DGA Trainee)
Directors Guild of America, Second Assistant Director, 1981 to 1986.
 
Education
 
ABD (Doctoral Candidacy), University of Michigan, 1977. Film Studies within the Dept. of Speech, Communication and Theater, Program in Radio/TV/Film.  Dissertation topic:  “Roles and Reality:  The Cinema of John Cassavetes.”
AM, Program in Radio/TV/Film, University of Michigan, 1975.  Cognate:  Photography, School of Art.
BFA, School of Art, University of Michigan, 1974.  Majors:  Photography and Painting
 
Supporting Member, YoloArts.org, Pence Gallery, Viewpoint Photographic Art Center, California Art Club as Associate Artist, Blue Line Arts

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