My painting process: Working on panel three of Topsfield Town Hall Commission

In this video I demonstrate how I paint with pulp.  I am using a turkey baster to add color to the background surface.  Ultimately, this will be an autumn scene inspired by the fauna of River Road, Topsfield.

Making the final edits to a commissioned wall relief.

This wall relief was commissioned for a private residence in Florida. The palette and composition is meant to emulate the seacoast of the south eastern United States. I am making the final edits to the work while the patron takes the video.

New Commission for our new town hall: Topsfield Town Hall

These are the five panels that will make up the commission of River Road for our new town hall.

And we’re off! Within a few weeks, these very incomplete panels will be ready for installation in their new setting in the Topsfield, Ma town hall. Right now, it feels a bit intimidating looking at so much empty space. #commission, #megblackstudios, #topsfieldma #design #interiordesign

Where did the phrase “that will cost you an arm and a leg” come from . . . ?

Historical fun fact: The phrase, “That will cost you an arm and a leg” came from art commissions that charged for additional the body parts. If you wanted more than your face in the painting, you had to paid for it. (below, (2014) Transitions, commissioned by the State of New #art #painting #commission Hampshire, 1% commission award).

The sound of Falling Water: the relationship between the Kauffmann’s and Frank lloyd Wright

I had the pleasure of visiting Falling Water this past Monday.  During our tour, I was impressed by the description our guide provided about the relationship between the Kauffmann’s and Frank Lloyd Wright, specifically as it related to their role as patrons to his now famous design.  Did the Kauffmann’s allow Wright the space necessary to create his masterpiece? How involved were they in the ultimate design?  We did learn that Mrs. Kauffmann insisted on adding screens to the windows one year after taking occupancy of the home given that the mosquitos appear to have loved the home almost as much as did the Kauffmann family and their servants. We also understood that the window treatments, as simple as they were, were also the idea of Mrs. Kauffmann who wanted some degree of privacy for and from her many guests. Finally, Mr. Wright refused to allow Mr. Kauffmann a garage for his many vehicles, instead settling for a “car port” thus inventing this now familiar term.

But, overall, it appears that the Kauffmann’s allowed Mr. Wright the space he needed to create his seminal work, and in doing so, ensured that their famous architect would create what is arguably the most famous home in American history, second only to the White House.

This got me thinking of the importance of the relationship between client and architect, patron and artist.  It is a delicate dance to give the client what they want, while maintaining the integrity of the design and allowing for the artistic vision to come through.  I have had experiences on both ends of the client/artist spectrum, from experiences for which my artistic vision was given space, to suffering the consequences of the “overly involved client.”  The Kauffmann’s were well served by Mr. Wright, and it appears he as well by his clients who allowed him the creative air to breath so they could enjoy the sounds of falling water.


Open House at Care Dimensions, Lincoln, MA

Sunday, March 24 was the long awaited and eagerly anticipated opening of the Care Dimensions Hospice House in Lincoln, MA.

The 18 bedroom house is just gorgeous, the work of Siemasko and Verbridge Interior Design and EGA architects. 

To play even a small part in this project was an honor and a thrill.  Many thanks to the staff at Care Dimensions for commissioning me to create two works for this special place.


Care Dimensions Open House, Lincoln, MA. How paintings Tell a Story installed in the background.

Terra Cotta Army at the Virginia Museum of Art, Richmond.

What a thrill to see members of the Terra Cotta Army at the Virginia Museum of Art last week. I had no idea they were on exhibition-made my trip to Virginia and DC all the more memorable. 

Care Dimensions Paintings, Lincoln, MA. Installed.

Very excited to see these works installed in their new home.  Looking forward to the open house for this important space.  Many families will benefit for the hard work and dedication of the Care Dimensions staff who worked so tirelessly on this project.

Installed, January, 2018.


The autumn painting in progress, September, 2017.

An in progress review of the paintings, October, 2017.

Installed: How Paintings tell a Story, Care Dimensions, Lincoln, MA.

The intension of this triptych is to visually reference the writings of Henry David Thoreau, who lived on Walden Pond near what is now the new hospice center in Lincoln, MA. He moved to a cabin on Walden Pond soon after the death of his brother. The combination of the hospice center hiring me to create site specific work and the research I did on Thoreau’s time on Walden Pond made a big difference in the success of this important space. The design team was able to consider proper lighting and optimal location for the painting.

My visual interpretation of Henry David Thoreau: How paintings tell a story.