Art Conversations


Getting my head around a new commission

Some commissions are simply obvious. The canvas almost paints itself and the process runs smoothly.  Generally, that’s landscapes or a simple portrait, with nothing more to do than to absorb the subject and translate it. Then there are the abstracts. The super complicated individual who commissioned the piece can also add a layer of complexity. It can take me months to figure out the design of a piece.  Often I will work on three different canvases before hitting upon the right one.  This image above was part of that process for an abstract horse portrait of a family of three.  It makes me smile when I hear people commenting on abstract art declaring, “I could do that!”

Artists are supposed to be the watchdogs of society

There are some principles in life that I hold to my heart.  Taught to me from a dusty volume I pulled from a shelf I had to use an old oak ladder to get to.  The voice I heard speak to me from those pages lives within me to this day. I spent much of my childhood in an old house called Glenleigh, sitting in the valley of two mountains near a village called Clogheen in Ireland. My adopted guardians, Edgar and Gypsy, were older (in their sixties) with a huge library of eclectic books from around the world. The warmest place in the whole house was the kitchen, but the quietest was the library which looked out onto the 11 acre gardens that surrounded this beautiful oasis of peace. My happy safe space as a traumatized tween/teen. It was there I’d sit and devour book after book, discussing them…

“Red Blob on a Dark Sea” – An answer to the Question

(The painting above is for a brave lass who I hope will connect again – she fights PTSD and this is her world @az_kate – almost finished) Haunted me.  That image. A painting, especially one seen in my mind, has a power that words cannot imagine.  For me in any case because, you see, I have a broken brain. “…new research showing how trauma shuts down Broca’s Region in the brain – the area that has to do with language and speech.  Often after trauma people don’t have words, but art, music, yoga, and other expressive practices can help them work through their trauma using different tools other than words.” email conversation with Clinical Psychologist (TEMA) treating First Responders in B.C.    Broca’s Region. Damaged. Explains why I was mute as a child.  Why my flashbacks always include me trying to scream but no sound coming out – no words,…


As most who follow KGA on Facebook know, once a month I run a win a KGA art piece dialogue.  My art has never been, and will never be, about how much it is worth or how pretty it looks.  I paint because of the voices I hear – yours, theirs, my own, my ghosts.  I paint to connect, and I hope that my pieces can live with you, be with you, walk beside you and give you a place to retreat to or a way of explaining how you are feeling, existing, experiencing this life of ours. This month I asked a simple enough question.  If I could paint you a place to be, a place to retreat to, a place to go to, what would that look like, and, why? I was messaged privately by a cop, twelve years in the job. Here was the opening few paragraphs.…