This is the latest in the Lightscape series, a desert arroyo that bends towards the light (18x18 acrylic on birch panel). It looks pretty good but only a couple of days ago it was a mess. I use an abstract process to build these lightscape paintings that is open ended, but sometimes results in a dead end, poor composition. I asked Chuck Volz, my painting mentor and gallery neighbor for some feedback. He took one look and said". Are those mountains or an indian pueblo?" The hills on the left were much higher, more complicated and had too many right angles. The scene had no rhythm or story. Yesterday I went back and forth to Chuck as I rebuilt the scene. His constructive criticism made this a much better painting. More importantly my relationship with Chuck has made me a much better painter and person. Cultivating mentors and truth telling friends has been the most challenging and rewarding part of my growth journey over the years. Criticism stings a bit, but it takes a few sparks to make me sharper! Thanks Chuck!
Tom C. McGee, Jr.
Musings about mystery, art and spirituality.