I was born in Elkin, North Carolina, and I grew up there. My wife and I now live in Tucson, Arizona. I learned to draw from my mother, who is herself a very accomplished painter. Later in life, when I moved to Hickory, North Carolina, I attended and graduated from Lenoir-Rhyne College with a BA in French with a minor in English. During that four years, one semester was spent in Aix-en Provence France, where I studied the French language as well as French Literature and Art. I also visited many of the sites of paintings by Cezanne, Van Gogh, and Gauguin. I even had a midday glass of beer at Van Gogh's "Night Cafe" in Arles. My work is influenced in part by the two polar extremes of my life - growing up in small town North Carolina, and living four years in New Zealand. Aside from six months in France, those two places have defined my life so far. However, in 2003 my wife and I moved to the American Southwest, where we explored New Mexico and Arizona. Now we live in Tucson, Arizona. I've had the good fortune to know and be influenced by two excellent artists, Jean Claude Quilici, a fantastic and successful French artist, and Ken Voss, a Colorodo artist. Much credit in my love of art should also go to my two French professors (and early collectors) from Lenoir Rhyne College in North Carolina, Dr. Bohdan Kuropas, and Dr. Augustin Quilici. A student is a lucky one if he or she has such great mentors as Dr Kuropas and Dr Quilici. And last but not least, I must say a warm thanks to my dear wife Jelena, who has been my most ardent supporter, harshest critic, and dearest friend. Thank you so much!