In 1954 Goodman entered the Philadelphia College of Art, where he studied illustration. A 1957 scholarship to the Yale-Norfolk summer school crystallized Goodman's decision to become a painter rather than an illustrator. In 1960, Goodman began teaching part-time at Philadelphia College of Art and remained there until the spring of 1979, when he joined the faculty of the Pennsylvania Academy. Goodman is a painter of landscapes and figures, and his early work had a strong metaphysical quality. From the mid 1960s until the late 1970s he was particularly concerned with what he calls " 'the violated landscape'—inanimate structures (water tanks, gas tanks, dumpsters, stadiums, incinerators, out of scale buildings) that threaten the harmony of nature." Goodman has recently completed a series of canvases on the elements in whichhe monumentalizes the powerful forces of earth, fire, water, and air.
Virginia M. Mecklenburg Modern American Realism: The Sara Roby Foundation Collection (Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press for the National Museum of American Art, 1987)