The Wave When I was first asked to do horses in 1980 for an album cover for Bob Seger, My response was "I don't do horses" Well I gave it a shot anyway and when I heard that people were buying the album just to frame the cover, I changed my mind about painting horses. Of course I did this with a little surreal Jim Warren twist, blending the horses into one of my great loves, the ocean waves. The Wave was painted in 1992.
Riders on the Storm Music had a big influence on me in the beginning of my career as an artist in the late 60s. Not surprisingly some of my paintings were inspired by, or at least titled after some of that music. I named this painting after the Door's "Riders on the Storm" a moody song which inspired this moody painting.
They only come out at night The idea for this painting came to me after observing that there are strange and unusual people that you see out late at night, that you just would not see during the day hours. If fantasy creatures did exist, I'm sure they too would only come out at night!
Wild waters As a child I often watched the rolling waves of the ocean crash upon the rocks and shore. I was intrigued by the shapes that appeared within the water, seemingly forming whatever my young imaginative mind could dream up. Hence, the birth of Wild Waters, my most published painting. Wild Waters has been published on calendars, greeting cards, posters, limited edition prints etc.
Night Moves It has been over 25 years since Bob Seger and the art director of Capitol Records "convinced me" that I "Could" paint horses. It has been one of my more re-occurring and popular themes in my paintings since that time. This latest painting "Night Moves" which I named after Seger's hit song from the 80s, is the moonlit version of my most popular painting "Wild Waters" , which was inspired by Seger and the horses I painted for the cover of his album "Against the Wind" I am happy to hear Bob Seger has a new album and is touring again.
Out of the Blue As a teen I questioned everything, including God. In a discussion once with my Dad, who is not particularly religious, he said to me something to the effect of "Do you think all this beauty in the world just happened out of the blue?" That was certainly something for me to ponder for years to come.
Trees of Life I thought it was intriguing how all of life depends on other life to survive. I guess that's partly where the phrase "Circle of Life" comes from.
Spirit of Play As I grew up I learned the horrible truth; that life is not all play and no work. But as I grew up more, I learned as well that work, as well as play can and should be done in the Spirit of Play; meaning ANYTHING can be fun if YOU make it so. The child in this painting was a candid shot I took of an unknown little girl running on the beach. It was about 5 years later when I came up with this idea that fit her so perfectly.
Alaskan illusion . I have alsways liked to hide things in my paintings, exept this time I have the reflections showing what exactly I was hiding just so no one misses a horse ot two.
Avalanche With Christmas coming soon I thought it time to paint a little freezing snow. My eight year old daughter came up to it when it was finished and said "Oh look! The horses start turning into snow and then start turning into rocks up there". That reassured me that it was indeed finished
After the Storm This painting is a variation of my classic painting "Avalanche" While some artist can paint a similar theme over and over, such as horses, oceans scenes, flowers etc, I find that I get very bored if I paint something similar within 3 years. The challenge for me is to continue thinking up new themes, a challenge I feel kept me as ambitious today as when I began painting 35 years ago.
Rollin' Like Thunder It is not only sights that make up the beauty of nature, it is the sounds as well. The beautiful, yet dramatic and often violent sounds of such natural occurrences as the crashing ocean waves, crackling thunder storms and snow avalanches seem to come alive, like a thundering herd of galloping horses.
The horses in the snow I have always enjoyed those pictures as a child where you find the hidden images within the landscape. I showed this to my 15 year old daughter Drew to see what she thought. At first she said it is horses and then she looked and some of the horses became mountains and the horses disappeared. That's how I determine that the painting is completed.
Peace on Earth Horses are the most beautiful and peaceful species on the planet I believe. Besides having great beauty and grace, they don't squabble over such issues as economics, religion or the color of their skin as we humans often do. In fact, it occurred to me that if horses were the only species on earth, there truly would be peace on earth, except then we humans would not be there to experience it. I guess we will just have learn to follow their examples. .
Out of the mist One thing I have always done with my paintings is try to make them come to life as if to be a part of the real world.
Horses in the Wild Because at times I hide things in my paintings, people are always looking at shapes within my paintings thinking there is something there ...usually unintentionally on my part. Here I have intentionally hidden some horses without saying how many, just to see if people can find them all, or find more that I even intended.
Running Free On Sept 11th, 2001 I was on the little Hawaiian Island called Kauai after just completing a show tour of the islands. Although we were on one of the most beautiful islands in the world, things looked pretty grim after hearing the news from New York. The feelings most felt was that this is the end of freedom as we have known it. On March 11th, the 6th month anniversary of this event, it occurred to me just how strong & resilient people can be when they truly believe in something; in this case freedom which for us in America is symbolized by the American Flag. I have been painting the theme of freedom ( personal freedom, religious/spiritual freedom etc.) ever since I became an artist in high school. For some reason this theme has usually been symbolized by me by running horses. This is the story of this painting which was started on March 11th, 2002.