I’VE BEEN DRAWING, PAINTING, AND CREATING MY WHOLE LIFE. IF CREATION WAS A DISEASE, AND MAYBE IT IS, I WOULD BE INCURABLE, TERMINAL.
WHEN I WAS GIVEN A COLORING BOOK, I WAS NOT GREAT. STAYING WITHIN THOSE LINES WAS NOT MY STRENGTH. BLANK PAPER WAS.
Many of my paintings depict a depth of quiet humanity interacting with an environment (for instance, a figure next to a crashing wave after a thunderstorm). Sometimes I enjoy producing something as simple, yet complex, as a wave alone. As a native coastal Floridian, I am intrigued by our fast-changing weather and incorporate these elements into my paintings. I try to decide in advance how much humidity would be in the air, what the clouds would be like, how churned up the water would be, plus our amazing light. Is a storm brewing, or is everything calming down right after a storm?
Just as important is how the space and design elements are shaped within the composition. Where should your eye go first—where do I want the viewer to end up? Can I subtly guide you without your awareness of this manipulation while maintaining a natural appearance?
My father worked in corporate America and paper waste was epic. The old copying machines only printed on one side of the paper. He would bring home boxes of this waste paper and it was a treasure! I would tape the pages together to make giant “canvases” out of the blank sides and produce monumental murals!
I have since been on a journey to challenge my creativity, continue to learn, and sharpen my skills. Currently, my main body of artwork consists of realistic, oil/acrylic paintings on canvas. I enjoy the challenges of realism. That is, not just the technical challenges but conjuring imagery that everyone recognizes in literal, personal ways, and creating a narrative that tells a thoughtful story that I “direct.” Many of these paintings are introspective, some are political, and often they have a sense of humor.
It takes no great skill to be shocking simply for shock’s sake. It is more satisfying to me to have some boldness, but not so much brashness. I sometimes have collectors who have owned my work for many years tell me they found themselves looking at one of my paintings for a long time after they thought they were sitting down to watch television. It is such an honor when folks purchase my work for more than wall furniture!
I enjoy working at different scales. The largest I’ve painted is 14’ x 48’ and I still do small studies on wood as small as 6” x 6.” Large paintings give back such energy during the execution of them. I have to put my whole body into a brushstroke at times. Small pieces are so intimate, a wholly different satisfaction.
What used to be a love/hate relationship (the process of producing an artwork) has become more of a mature, personal, satisfying joy.
Lance Rodgers has the unique capacity to observe aspects of American culture and human nature, with all of the our “warts” and render his ideas through works of art that utilize humor, satire, social and political commentary. Rodgers is an artist of immense talent and intelligence, an artist with an uncanny ability to utilize his art to explore Americana and in the process, our common humanity.
Rodgers’ narrative paintings are big, brash and beautifully done. Pretty women, no surprise. Irony and political commentary, ditto. Virtuoso still lifes, check.
His unifying principle acknowledges flaws while remaining hopeful on both a personal and world level. His themes are sometimes purposely too didactic, purposely too obvious. But delivered as they are with such technical flourish and visual loveliness, they have as much bravery as bravado. It’s a good place for a painting to balance and for a painter to live.