Why I Think I Do What I Do

Originally shared in a newsletter on January 24, 2019

Something I've been asking myself a lot is, why am I drawn to paint what I paint? The answer is more elusive than you'd think it would be. I mean, I love the desert, I love mountains, but I could just paint deserts and mountains as they are. They're beautiful enough without their colors made crazy and cowgirls and domes jumbled up in them, aren't they? Why do I feel the need to embellish on the perfect beauty of nature?

Maybe it's because I'm a human being, and humans seem to have an insatiable urge to modify their surroundings. Maybe it's because God made me in Her image, and She is a creator, too, and I'm just flexing the divine in me. Maybe it's because I think landscapes are nice, but bizarre landscapes are more fun to look at. If I can paint a dome in there or stick a space girl on there, why wouldn't I? I can play in my own world, put my own spin on the natural beauty of this planet.

Maybe it's because I'm drawn to the mysterious. Maybe I like to make people wonder what the heck an astronaut is doing in the American Desert, or what that dome or those spires are doing nestled in our national landmarks, our familiar landscapes. Maybe it's all of these things.

Whatever the reason, I'm going to keep doing it, but mostly because I like doing it and it's fun to do.