The Painting Journals began in the summer of 1992 with a few ink blots. It was the summer between the first and last year of graduate school, and I needed a free zone with no pre-conceived rules, a place to do anything, to experiment. For the better part of nine months, it seemed, four to five visiting artists a week had come through our studios, giving thumbs up or down critiques, sometimes one of each on the same day. It was great to have a break.
Working the journals quickly formed muscle memory, a short-cut into studio work. Outside responsibilities fade quickly as my eye, hand and brush are linked, and the sense of touch is more active and alive.
I used water-based media in these journals, and in a few years, my work was based on water. The journals are non-linear. I turn the pages until I see something I need to do. When the page is too wet to work further, I set it aside, and work in the next journal. For me, the pages can record moments in time, yet they are made over long periods. None of the books are complete.
The pages often start by gluing in bits and pieces of life. They can end up becoming a record of people, memories, things that matter. Sometimes, the records are covered over by paint, and the initial impetus changes or disappears. The process transforms whatever goes into them into a visual experience. Over time, other bodies of work emerge from the books.
Journal 1: 14 ¼ inches H X 12 inches W X 2 ½ inches D
Journal 2: 14 inches H X 11 ¼ inches W X 1 ½ inches D
Journal 3: 14 ¼ inches H X 11 inches W X 1 ¾ inches D
Journal 4: 14 inches H X 11 inches W X 2 ½ inches D