“Silver Dollars” contemporary figurative art
“Silver Dollars” or “Secret Money Deal” started as a painting about a dream I had, but the tone of the painting is completely different from the dream. In the dream, a friend and I are walking down an old two-lane highway in the country. We have found some boxes of old coins, so many that we can barely carry them all. We keep having to set money down on the side of the road simply because we can’t carry it all, and we keep making jokes about it and arguing about what to do and laughing. The tone of this dream was funny and light, and it’s hard not to interpret it as a good omen or at least a sign of contentment.
When I started sketching the dream, a completely different story popped into my head. This new story was about a secret money deal that ended with a double cross like a pirate tale. I saw images of thieves digging up hidden money in the night, years after the original crime, and one partner killing the other. I wasn’t thinking of Tom Waits’ “Rain Dogs” album at the time, at least not consciously, but the themes and imagery are similar to what I had in mind.
It’s not unusual for me to think of many different versions of a painting. In fact, I usually can’t help but thinking about all the many different ways I could use the same archetypes in terms of narrative, not too mention all the different visual aspects of the paint itself: color, tonality, layering, etc. Many times I look at my website and all I can see are the paintings that could have been, the paintings I hope to paint some day. I honestly think I could spend the rest of my life painting variations of images I have already created if it weren’t for all the new ideas.