Many cultures have literary or religious traditions that recognize life’s duality, often involving parabolic characters whose symbolic actions or attributes create conflicting meanings. I capitalize on this concept by using broad cultural references in cryptic tableaus inspired by my emotional states and interactions with others. I often depict my characters in the moments of contemplation that immediately precede action; I set them in depthless landscapes of saturated color washes, leaving each character’s agency and circumstances to be defined by viewers. It is extremely important to me that most symbols emerge over long periods of time, but once their interpretive function is determined, their uses are unconsciously understood throughout a culture. I simulate this process by researching slowly and producing images quickly. This concept guides me as I choose how to work and what media to use. Acrylic paint allows me to work quickly, as does gouache, pen, ink, and monotype. Etching, which I find particularly satisfying, feels more like research than image making because of the additional preparation required.