Introduction gallery The Artists Contact

My Ideas and Process

I’m frequently asked where I get my ideas. I wish there were easy answers; translating a vision into language is to describe air by inflating earthbound words. The interior rhythms that stir up a vision and put it into motion bring to mind star residue falling from space into the seas and sparking life. Either the idea falls to me or I find the idea. I sketch, dream, experiment, welcome chance, conjure new theories, improve technique, and still artistic invention is a mystery to me.

Music and tactile sensation enter my creative acts. Half-recalled melodies and the reminiscences of sand and water may play across my mind as the idea is born and begins to take shape. A cantina’s peeling door, someone dying, an oil slick’s iridescence, ocean air, a dream of hot lava, macabre tales, the night’s burning stars––anything can ignite an idea, which leads to decisions of structure, placement and color. Within those bounds, a creation emerges that exists somewhere between chaos and order.

To begin a painting, I score the metal. The metal work can be formalized patterns, random bursts, or twisting currents to create planes of dynamic tensions and rhythmic pulsations. Once I’ve completed this aspect, I apply the many layers of transparent paints and blend them into color fields. Then I add the mixed-media impastos of pumice or sand or ground minerals, then more layers of paints. When these stages are complete, a three-dimensional image emerges combining movement, clarity, depth and ceaseless mutation. It’s the synthesis of all of these elements––textured metal, transparent color harmony, personal vision, compositional cohesion––that determines the success of a painting.

I‘m intrigued with natural phenomena, astronomy, geology, evolution. I’m equally interested in our preoccupation with birth, death, loss, sexuality, curiosity and the subconscious. An image of flight may symbolize our desire both for the pure joy of taking wing, as well as the desire to escape the madness. A colored orb invokes the healing energy of certain jewels.

I try to imagine nature from within, and seek to create a world, which, if it never exists anywhere but in a painting, is worthy of existing. In the end, it is your eyes and experience that breathes life into art. A painting must stir something in you, kindle a poetic exchange of thought or emotion, for the communication to be a success.



Daniel Dodson
PO Box 509
Hopland, CA. 95449

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All of the images contained within this website are copyrighted by Daniel Dodson, and are protected by United States Copyright Law and International Copyright Law.