My father was a professor of mathematics, my mother painted watercolors, and I landed between them with a bias toward geometry.
      I painted a few canvases while I was in college. They were awful. I subsequently explored landscape photography, nonfiction writing and children’s poetry as alternate modes of expression before returning to painting about ten years ago.
      I’m one of those people who squares up the stack of magazines on my coffee table. Or yours. I’m drawn to geometric hard-edge forms and flat color in part because they entail a level of precision that calms me and narrows my focus to laying down masking tape in a straight line and brushing without leaving brush strokes. More fundamentally, I’m fascinated by ambiguity of figure and ground, by symmetry and asymmetry, by the juxtaposition of the diagonal with the horizontal and vertical, and, most of all, by the apparent movement of static elements.
      Each painting begins as a small-scale, pencil-drawn layout on graph paper. Occasionally, the first try “works,” but more often it leads to considerable erasing and redrawing before I run over to Kinko’s to make copies. Each copy is like an uncolored page from a coloring book. I pencil in different colors and color relationships on successive copies until I arrive at a balanced composition in which all the colors make good neighbors. It may take five or ten attempts before I’m ready to paint.
      I typically produce several paintings using the same layout with different color combinations as a sort of return on investment. I may also modify the layout for the next painting to incorporate an insight that came from the painting before. This process of sequential modifications can lead to something quite different, and sometimes better, than what I had visualized months or even years earlier. And that can be rewarding.