Lorro Mountain, 2008, oil/canvas, 18" x 24" is a prime example of memory painting. I do not paint on-the-spot, nor do I paint from photos. I do some sketches, but they are fast ones. Where I do much of my drawing for paintings is in my head. By this, I mean that I observe the things that capture my attention and mentally draw or map out the elements that I like. This process is a way of burning into my visual memory things that I can call upon later in the studio.
This is a great source for me to call on when making a painting. Curiously, the memories can blend together in a way that permits me to synthesize an image combining elements of different places I've been. I don't mind this. In a way it actually makes for better pictures.
Lorro Mountain is a western view. I think it takes its forms from places in Alberta and New Mexico. By pulling way back for a long view I get to add some haze to flatten the mountain and concentrate on the pyramid-like shape. The little trees are contrasted and carry the eye across the fields towards the apex of the mountain.