Today marks Winter Solstice in the northern hemisphere when the north pole is furthest from the Sun. Because of this, we will experience the shortest period of daylight with the Sun at its lowest daily maximum elevation in the sky, and tonight will be the longest night of the year. But tomorrow, the dawn will come a bit earlier and sunset just a bit later. We will enjoy more daylight hours.

We sense these shifts in the laws of our environment. Emotions rise and can surprise us. Often, we are unable to communicate what we’re feeling. How we experience change, be it seasonal, personal, physical, interpersonal, financial, economic, or safety, and react to that change is highly subjective. Then there are the moments of discovery that suddenly reset our relationship with the world. Often, encounters with change guide us to deeper truths. Even these happy experiences are challenging to process and express. How do we express something for which we lack words? How do we share the way these profound effects inspire us?  


Art clarifies, communicates, and inspires in ways that words cannot. Art has the potential to help us connect with others. Art empowers us.  

In WINDJAMMERS, I am pursuing a practical idealism that weds technical skill, a seasoned nautical sensibility, and a lyrical expression of often opposing ideas -- strength and vulnerability, sinew and iron, loneliness and the company of Nature’s outsiders. I seek precision in a frame’s subject – accuracy and detail that invites the viewer to lean in and study it. For me, when I accomplish some dimensional aspect of Nature, I glimpse something authentic and timeless. In this way, I discover, learn, and develop meaningful connections with our world and myself. 

From my earliest memory as a boy on a gravel beach at Lake Champlain when I saw my first square-rigged tall ship beating north through high winds, I was inspired by the spectacle of wind, generally, and wind-powered boating specifically. From a sailing canoe to a massive three-masted ship, humankind had long ago devised ways to move all manner of vessels over water – quietly, predictably, sometimes fast, sometimes slow and steady. I was fascinated by the mystery of how sailors mastered invisible currents of air to motivate a massive hull and its cargo through dense water. How is it possible that a 150-pound person can withstand 30 to 50-knot winds, while a 325-ton vessel – the average tonnage of a mid-19th century whaler – could master light 10-knot winds and traverse thousands of miles of oceans? 

There it was, a bluewater tall ship on Lake Champlain! THAT five-sensory experience jarred my circuits, penetrated my consciousness and subconscious, and silently reoriented me in some new parallel existence. Experience in and around all kinds of boats and ships touched hard-to-understand inner thoughts, emotions, and needs. Some of my most meaningful experiences were on boats - rowboats, 8-man shells, canoes, Lightning sloops, powerboats, massive offshore Blue Riband challenger yachts, sloops, 12-meter America’s Cup class racing yachts, SWATH tenders, pilots, brigs, barks, clippers, square-rigged ships, and my favorite, schooners. The art of sail became a language for me that gave form to deep feelings that defied intellect and consistently guided me forward.  

I have strived to capture the authentic aesthetic experience at sea, beyond where the land transitions into fathomless depths, where sailors walk across oceans (on wood and steel decks). Along the way, I’ve learned about the sciences of optics, climate, weather, geology, marine geology, human color perception, sunlight refraction in air and water at various times of day through the seasons. I’ve internalized an understanding of physics, naval architecture, hydrodynamics, tide tables, and shipping news while adapting to transformative changes in art, craft, and image-making technology. All in pursuit of a simple image, a slice of truth, something elemental and authentic. More straightforward, yet not at all simple. Eventually, I got the right combination of elements at the right time and captured a collection of pieces I want to share: The Art of Sail | WINDJAMMERS

I invite you to view the WINDJAMMERS Collection and consider one of these artworks for a special friend or yourself.