I grew up in the Vancouver area, and have always been interested in psychology, philosophy and biology. These subjects, and the natural world around me, became the inspiration for my drawings. I found such sources as encyclopedia illustrations, taxidermy, and Robert Bateman paintings piqued my interest and influenced my work. After high school, I taught myself to paint and became obsessed with the idea of painting nature as it is. I am interested in the importance of attending to every subtle detail - in respecting those minute details that construct every living being. A fear of insulting my audience pushes me: I never want to leave a piece until it is as close to perfect as possible, as I feel that flaws register with the viewer in a way that can leave her uncomfortable. I also find that hyper-realistic depictions of animals can be an honest expose. This type of expose can also make the viewer uncomfortable, but in a confrontational sense, as opposed to the unease produced by distorted proportions and misrepresentations.
My process involves scrutinizing photographs, clarifying every detail, and blowing out colour completely on a minute scale, in order to produce an unromantic and scientific portrayal of nature. I attempt to freeze the subject in a stillness that a camera can't always capture. I make an effort to include every gory detail, no matter how unattractive, in order to create an honest and sensitive portrait. Each part is also a whole, making the study vital and in possession of a spirit that transcends the image. This approach allows the viewer to examine the piece from a Buddhist-like point of view. Being shown the softness of fur, firmness of muscles, liquid eyes, or hard smoothness of tooth enamel next to wet gums, transports one to a sympathetic vantage point of the subject.
I want to explore oneness and sympathy with the Animal Kingdom by anthropomorphizing animal subjects, and depicting them in emotional and human situations.