My work focuses on expressing the essence of the most innate and eternal moment that exists at the fundamental basis of our reality.
Over the past few years, I’ve developed a painting style that I call visionary impressionism. It’s a melding of visionary art and impressionism. Visionary art aims to express the nature and meaning of experiences that transcend one’s baseline state. These experiences include the altered states of consciousness achieved through lucid dreaming, meditation, and the use of psychedelic substances, among others. One might interpret these experiences to be spiritual, mystical, or even otherworldly. From a stylistic perspective, though, the predominant trend is for visionary artists to employ a painting technique of magical realism in conjunction with the use of symbolism, translucent layers, and patterns.
In contrast, the impressionists depicted the impression of the moment along with light and movement. They focused on painting subject matter firmly grounded within the observable world, such as landscapes and portraits. Their mark making was spontaneous and free flowing, which caused edges to lack definition. They used thick, unmixed paint in order to achieve intensity of color and impasto effects. Moreover, the impressionists did not use translucent washes; instead, they applied paint in an opaque fashion.
Like the impressionists, the subject matter within my work is part of the observable world. Still, my understanding of “observable” is undoubtedly far different from the impressionists’ perspective. Adrift from one’s baseline state, the definition of “observable” holds a deeper meaning. Observation can take place through our two eyes as well as our third eye in the form of intuition, feelings, and other inherent modes of knowing.
Even though expressing this type of observation is challenging, I’ve found the impressionists’ techniques of mark making and paint application to be quite effective. In particular, their handling of light and movement, free-flowing mark making, use of high color intensity, opaque paint application, impasto effects, and blurred edges all facilitate the communication of the essence of what I’ve observed.
By utilizing an impressionist style, my work is a departure from the current trend within visionary art of relying upon magical realism and symbolism to stimulate a level of cognitive understanding within the viewer. Rather, my work focuses on communicating the essence of the moment – the essence of the eternal now as understood through the lens of everyday experience. This is because I believe that, at it’s most fundamental level, enlightenment is attained when we see beyond the facade of the mundane. Thus, the subjects within my work are the pets, people, and landscapes that surround me.
To learn more about my process, read my blog post “Visionary Impressionism and the Practice of Mindful Painting“.