I think of my artistic temperament as a confluence of mediums: earth art’s process drives photography’s practice executed through painting’s prism. How else do I explain that I photographed a thicket of dying cedar trees entangled in blackberry vines for fifty-seven straight days; and that my intention was to document that subject with the gestural articulation of expressionist brushstrokes?
Since 2014, I return to the same polygon of secluded new-growth forest for weeks on end, several times a year, revisiting and re-photographing the same sites. I leverage the symbiotic relationship between earth art and photography to document, albeit with reckless interpretive abandon, the insurgent source of creativity this landscape offers.
Pushing photography into painting isn’t traversing the gulf that it seems. Camera, film, and photographic paper are not dissimilar to brush, paint, and canvas. Photographic decisions are essentially gestural, like brushstrokes to painting; they are subjective markers of projected spatial and temporal context, constructed with relative emotive proclivity. In effect, I’m documenting my perception of, relationship to, and performance within this overwhelmingly transient woodland.
The essence of a regenerating coastal British Columbian landscape is raw. This isn’t an iconic or idealized nature; it’s both untamed and ordered. The way life explodes into existence has an enigmatic beauty, and with it comes limitless creative potential as an evolving subject. For an artist whose practice is fuelled by an obsessive drive to revisit the same scope of work, there is no more ideal place; and the systems of rituals that lie at the heart of photographic process allow me to never truly leave.