While at the University of Texas my painting was completely abstract and was influenced by the light and land around me. In 1970 I received a scholarship to the Skowhegan School in Maine where I had an opportunity to meet and learn from some of the most important and influential artists of that time such as Brice Marsden and Kenneth Noland. While there I was also influenced by realist painters Jack Beal and Gabriel Laderman. It was at Skowhegan that I began to turn towards realism. I have, since, tried to understand, through painting, what it means to be a contemporary realist — a painter of my culture and of my time. Primarily, I try to understand light and its vicissitudes since light reveals form, color, everything. After I moved to Crockett California in 1990 I became fascinated with plein aire painting. I felt that plien aire was perfect for my 20th-century consciousness. The painter observes and experiences the changes of weather, the changes of light, the flow of people, and, in general, the social-ecological environment. During the last several I have become dedicated to work in the studio. However, I find that my studio work is now informed and enhanced by the salient experiences of plein aire painting as well as the formal and poetic aspects of my earlier abstract work. In particular, I have become preoccupied with still life (the landscape of the table). The ability to direct and control light, to select forms, and color is exciting and provides new opportunities to explore and express the mystery of being, which I believe is always at the heart of creative endeavors.