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Jon Raymond Recommends...

Writers Recommend

Posted 5.30.12

"I draw a lot of inspiration from visual art. One of the early and ongoing inspirations for me is a painter (and happily, a friend) named Michael Brophy whose ironic yet romantic images of western clear-cuts, slash piles, stumps, and domesticated forest scapes opened a whole new way of seeing my own backyard (the Northwest). I really can't overestimate what a gift Brophy's work is—the histories it suggests, the sense impressions it implies—to the degree that I can honestly say it has led in some way to all my fictive projects. There are a lot of other artists who've had influences on my work, too, some through their conceptual frameworks and others through very specific little details I've stolen—a coiled garden hose or a cursive tire tread that becomes part of a scene. There's something about a visual image that both focuses the mind and frees it to wander, and the artists who help me most—people like Robert Adams, Ed Ruscha, and Chris Johanson, to name a few—guide me into landscapes of thought and feeling I might not find on my own."
Jon Raymond, author of Rain Dragon (Bloomsbury, 2012)

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