Working mainly with oils on canvas, I enjoy painting landscapes and other inspiring scenery in the alla prima method with impasto techniques in the abstract impressionism style. That’s just a fancy way of saying that I paint what I feel, rather then just what I see. I subscribe to the belief that artistic selection can overrule reality, if done with careful thought and consideration.
My favorite places to paint are on the back patio of my home in Taos, New Mexico, facing the sacred Taos Mountain’s Pueblo Peak or plein air in the mountains of Northern New Mexico. The legendary light and shadow in this part of the world are unmatched anywhere else. The altitude, the clean air, the light, the sky, the intoxicating smell of piñon, and the amazing changing colors of the seasons are so inspiring it’s impossible not to paint! From the reds, pinks and purples of the hollyhocks in spring...to the viridian green hue of the sagebrush in summer ...to the incredible yellows and golds of the aspens and cottonwoods of fall...to the whites, blues, and greys of winter...to the cerulean blue sky and clear, frigid waters of the Rio Hondo year-round, my soul is stirred by the call of these sacred mountains.
To me, art is not a product or a thing. It’s a process; a journey. It’s a grand experiment in my perception of the world around me. It’s my own unique perception that I get to share with another person. Art opens a special door for me to connect with other people. That makes art personal.
I feel that true art includes the often uncomfortable action of putting it out there in the world for people to appreciate, criticize, or ignore. I can’t keep it to myself and call it art. It must be shared. But once shared, each person who interacts with it has the right to love it, like it, hate it, despise it, be impressed or indifferent, intrigued or irritated. Once I’ve released it into the world, each person who interacts with my work sees it through their own perspective. It’s their own unique perception of the world around them, just as the creation of it was mine.
Making art is a personal expression. Perceiving art is a personal impression. Experiencing art? Well...that’s both.
Daniel Kirkland Buchanan is an author and artist living in Taos, New Mexico and Heath, Texas. With a love for the outdoors, he enjoys mountain hiking and trail running with his wife and two Plott hounds. He is an author, oil painter, and forever student of chess. He rarely refuses a great cup of coffee.