The act of laying graphite down onto paper is personal, intimate and immediate. It is just me, the pencil and the paper. When I put pencil to paper there is no disguise, no veneer. There are no trappings. The clatter and clutter of life is distilled into a quiet simplicity the moment the graphite touches the paper. My inspiration comes from the natural world. Rocks, sticks, trees and rope fascinate me, not only in their simplicity as objects but also, how they can address the complexities of the human condition. Most recently the expanse and infinitude of skies and water have captivated me. I can hold a rock or a stick. I can rub my palm along a tree trunk. I can feel the coarse fibers of rope. These are objects I can contain. A fast moving river, the depths of the ocean, massive cloud formations elusively changing shape against a colorful sky- these I cannot contain and I am reminded that I am small. Drawing these ever-present, natural objects and scenes through intense and close observation quiets me and connects me to both the grandeur and frailty of life. Graphite and colored pencils are my primary tools. Yet, paper is integral to the image, not simply the surface which holds the image. The paper and the marks on the paper synthesize, yielding a single seamless result. Often I make my own paper and include the handmade paper within the image. The interaction between the pencil and paper is alive and vital, bringing forth imagery.