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Seeking the brightest white, one needs the darkest black...

It's that time of year when we look back on where we've been often as a measure of where we might like to go. To paint a picture I often start with painting in the biggest areas of darks, and the biggest lights. I squint a lot, so the details don’t get in the way of the bigger picture. When I first started painting, I mistakenly thought if I got the perfect white pigment (the absolute combination of all colors on the light spectrum), I could paint the brightest of brights. I was very wrong. Brightness is relative, and is most powerful when juxtaposed against the darks. When I look back upon my year, I see that the big areas of dark made my brights that much brighter—that the cools offset the warms, and that without contrast our lives would be very flat. I wish you all a year filled with beautiful contrasts, and bright moments that significantly offset the darker ones.

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