Under the clear blue skies in Santa Fe, New Mexico, I found myself in the perfect atmosphere for my art. The clarity of the sky and the beauty of the landscape captured me and enabled me to create art that I had never considered before.
Living on the East Coast and Midwest for most of my life, I had no real understanding of western culture. I had very little knowledge of the heroes and villains of the west. While on a trip to Tombstone, Arizona, I wandered into a gift shop and saw postcards with images of Indians and outlaws that roamed the western part of the country. It was there that I first spotted the only authenticated photograph of Billy the Kid.
What struck me was that he was only 21 years old when he was shot dead and in those few short years he became a legend. I began to sketch his image. Sketch after sketch, his personality began to surface on the paper. He was a loyal friend. He was a rogue. He was an escape artist. He was flamboyant. He was a deadly killer. My bronze sculpture of Billy the Kid is featured in The Hubbard Museum of the American West and the NM State Museum in Lincoln, New Mexico, where the saga of Billy the Kid remains a compelling tale. The Native people and their history also intrigued me. Great leaders like Chief Red Cloud and Chief Joseph, Sitting Bull and Geronimo fascinated me. They were tireless leaders and warriors, intent on saving their cultures from the white men who encroached on their land and people.