This is where I started. When contemplating what to begin painting, I went with the old adage, “go with what you know.” I drove up to Michigan to my mom’s house and brought home a stack of family photographs from our MIchigan farm from the late 1800s to the 1950s. Arranging them in categories of time, place, and setting, I started to see the connections that lay between their lives and my own. Now after years of doing this, I have over 300 photographs from this era. I will be forever grateful to my family for documenting this time in such a complete way. Not only are there shots of work and family life, but the many fantastic and poetic shots serve as a unique and special body of work of their own. So defines the work I do – it is not solely of my own creation, but a collective that spans over 130 years.