We conducted this season’s resident interviews digitally to coordinate with staff scheduling.

Please find Jack’s responses to our questions below. 

You can learn more about Jack’s work and research interests here.


Tell us about yourself and your practice.

I have experience in various mediums and I’m currently enjoying “plein air” landscape painting. It gets me outside and slows me down in ways that painting indoors does not. It also sets limits on my focus, as the light changes I have to choose between pausing the painting (usually working off photographs later), working with the changing light, or starting another painting altogether that will better take advantage of the new light angles. All of this meshes well with my need to move and be engaged with the outside world, while also seeking to maintain a rich and private interior life that is reflective and responsive.

Can you talk about your background and how that has shaped your creative practice?


I trained in various arts and crafts for over 25 years, always seeking the common principles of creativity and process that span all creative pursuits. With friends and family in varied sectors of the arts, I have been exposed to the notion that the mediums we use are channels; but the central creative question is not what medium we use, but rather what message or exploration we choose to move into and share with others.

What is it about your process that motivates you to keep coming back?


Being outside and bringing my focus to noticing line and color clicks my brain and nervous system into down regulation cycles. It helps my thinking widen and allows me to gain overviews of the patterns in my life as an extension of noticing patterns in nature as I attempt to depict them.

What do you want people to take away from your work?


The desire to be outside and see clearly, take a deep breath, and feel their feet on the ground. It’s also fun if it inspires them to dive into their creative process.


Can you talk about what you’ve been working on during your time at Azule?


My timing was great for the fall colors in western North Carolina, and my technical focus was on exploring new mediums within a water-based process. This is the first time I’ve painted on cradled wooden panels using water color ground, which allows me to skip paper and the mounting process that goes with it, simplifying my overall process and materials needs. During my time at Azule I explored using gauche when I was seeking more opaque colors such as sky-blues, and I also experimented with applying resist medium as part of establishing contrasting lights/darks at the beginning of the painting.

Where do you find inspiration? (Artists, history, personal experiences, specific places, etc.)

The distinctly Southern landscape of the Civil Rights movement.


What advice would you give a creative who is just starting in their practice?

Make a daily practice of it. No matter how little time you take at first, just make space for it. Also, keep your materials simple if possible; that cuts down on the cost of special equipment and also tends to make an artistic practice more environmentally sensitive.

How would you define “success” as an artist?

Peace of Mind atop Peace of Heart.

Plein air works in progress.

Images from Jack’s time in residence.


Courtesy of the artist.