I always tell people that I try to make my paintings look like a memory. I like things a little vague, a little fuzzy around the edges. Maybe that is why I have always been drawn to old movies. The graininess, the shadows, that mid-Atlantic accent – I’ve loved them since childhood.
I remember when I was about 9 years old I spent a weekend with my grandmother. At that time the local television station had just started to play “all night movies” on Saturday nights starting at 10pm. Being my grandmother and not my mother she said that we could stay up and watch the first one, but then we had to go to bed. Well, after about 30 minutes into the first movie Mamaw was falling asleep on the couch. She said she would let me finish watching the movie by myself because she just had to go to bed. She trusted me to turn off the TV and go to bed as soon as the first one was over. That was the first time I ever stayed up all night. I watched all the movies and when the sky started to get grey through the window, I went outside and watched the sun come up.
I was so happy. The Marx Brothers, Myrna Loy, William Powell, and Ruby Keeler had worked a spell on me. I have been hooked ever since.
My love for these old films has only grown and has also inspired my work as an artist. The way they preserve a moment, a voice, a look… and it’s all simply done with light and shadows – just like painting.
I have always hoped that some of my paintings might be able to capture moments in that ethereal way. That they could be a little cloudy window someone could peek through and maybe end up getting a glimpse of something beautiful.