Solar eclipses are rare, and have always been mysterious, exciting, special events for humanity.

As I’ve explored a variety of cosmic themes in my work, conjuring thoughts of epic myths and creation stories, intergalactic travel and the unknown mysteries of far-flung corners of our universe, I’ve found the singular lucky moment of alignment during a solar eclipse is a visually striking illustration of the balance I continually strive to portray.

I show a real astronomical event–total solar eclipse–with colors and compositions from a world of pure fantasy. Visually, these paintings are an exploration of light against darkness. The blinding, gleaming glow of the sun’s corona breaking out around the edges of the moon, that piercingly sharp contrast, is an indescribably satisfying phenomenon to look at. Depending on how I choose to present the image of an eclipse, it’s interesting to me how the moon can be depicted as a flat black disk in total silhouette, or it can be shown in the dull red glow from the sun’s reflected light.

As a painter, I enjoy the challenge of painting a subject that is, in real life, mostly in darkness–literally an event that blocks out the sun–while finding creative ways to use as much light and color as possible to create a visually engaging, emotionally stirring image.