I paint people's ideal bookshelves: your favorite books, books that changed your life, books that made you who you are. Picking your ideal books is not an easy task (try it!), and the results are always enlightening. I think of this project as an intimate form of portraiture; a way to illustrate who the subject is on the inside instead of out. I love that a book is something created very personally and then mass-produced in order to affect many other people very personally. I paint them to turn them back into something very personal and intimate. In the age of the Kindle, it's very satisfying. This set is actually a "Super-Ideal" bookshelf, in a sense. It contains all the cookbooks most often included in people's sets of favorites, plus a few of my personal favorites I couldn't leave out.