R . M . H


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Animal Paintings

Painting is the central point of my life. It is both my work and my recreation. I find it relaxing and frustrating. I am concerned with the why and the how of painting and the folding of those ideas into the what I am painting.

Choosing what to paint can be the hardest choice of all, or sometimes the simplest. The choice of subject often implies a direction. It can be the beginning of a process, a search, or a series. The choice of a subject often leads to months of exploration on similar themes and developments. The resulting series are tied together with similar continuities and new developments.

But in these small animal paintings, I am free from exploring heavy themes and formal discussions. I allow myself the joy of experiencing my craft.


-- Ray M. Hershberger 1997


Note 1: 

When I started to paint my pets, it was with the hope that the paintings would sell and pay for the food and vet bills.  It was in these little asides from the "regular" paintings, that I found a small, but significant satisfaction.

Note 2:

 The new animal paintings, 2005 and watercolors, are still part of the tradition of relaxation, but the impetus for them has changed.  When I moved into my new studio at the D'art Center, I had to share a studio for the  first time in a long time..  My studio-mate, a Chinese brush painter, kept telling me that I needed to paint some elephants if I wanted to sell during Christmas. I painted elephants, and more . . . for fun, for free-fall, for peace. 


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