Old age is ready to undertake tasks that youth shirked because they would take too long. — W. Somerset Maugham Who in his right mind spends three hours over a cup of coffee? That's what I did yesterday. "Cuppa Joe" (oil on canvas, only 5 x 7 inches) took...

Chaos, for me, breeds images. — Francis Bacon   I've always been an über-neatnik. My studio—kept neat, clean, and in apple-pie order—reflects that. I worry sometimes my innate tidiness hampers me. Compare the condition of my studio to that of the great British painter Francis Bacon. Besides paint tubes, Bacon kept over...

It's heartwarming to hear family, friends and neighbors ask "How are you doing?" and mean it. So far, so good, is my answer. I'm asymptomatic, taking all the recommended precautions, and adding a few of my own (such as sniffing Stubb's Bar-B-Q Sauce every morning, to test...

Experience is merely the name men give to their mistakes. — Oscar Wilde Blame Trophy Communism: in our everybody-gets-a-trophy culture, self-criticism is hard to come by. Which means a lot of weak work gets off the drawing board. If you're a Trophy Capitalist, on the other hand, you don't...

Originality always happens as a byproduct of the search for the answers to a technical or aesthetic problem. — Robert Kulicke When you paint a pear, how original can you be? It depends on your definition of "original." Like a rose, a pear is a pear is a pear. And,...

Give a girl the right shoes, and she can conquer the world. ― Marilyn Monroe Fashion footwear―boots, shoes, sandals and slippers―no longer captures the bulk of consumer spending in the footwear category, according to retail analysts. "Athleisure"―sneakers, flats, slip-ons and flip-flops―has walked off with it. The reasons for the...

Art doesn’t have to be expensive. — Judith Selkowitz, Art Adviser Al, a painter I know, asked me yesterday about the size of my works. He's friend to another artist who is enjoying commercial success with large abstract paintings, which he sells to interior decorators. Al wondered...

  The whole aim of civilization: to make everything a source of enjoyment. — Leo Tolstoy   Singapore-based Wealth-X asked over 2,000 people, Why buy original works of art? How do you think they answered? Nearly two-thirds (62%) said "my enjoyment." Pleasure—what the researchers termed the "emotional return on investment"—represents collectors'...

After spending decades chasing clients in Our Nation's Capital, my wife and I at last have narrowed our choices of a new place to call home and settled on the Brandywine Valley. We're both delighted. It's inspiring to live here. You'd have to look long and hard...

In the midst of movement and chaos, keep stillness inside of you. — Deepak Chopra Still life derives from the 17th century Dutch word stilleven, a collective name for paintings depicting objects like fruit, flowers, food, and everyday household items. Still-life paintings are magical, I believe, because...