I carry a sketchbook all the time to record quick vignettes of ideas: late light reflections on a lake; turbulent skies; joyful activity of farmers' markets; Families feeding ducks. The painting process begins when the mind’s eye opens to the moods, activities, colors and the Spirit of a place. I quickly sketch to outline the shapes. My goal is not a photographic depiction of the landscape, rather the essence of it, including only what actually attracts me to it. The painting conveys the essence of a place.