Posted by Sunforged on 10.1.09
Have you always been an artist? as a boy were you drawn to the act of creation?
I like to think I've always been an artist. I drew a lot as a young boy. During high school I would draw constantly during class. Art is something I've been around since Day One. I never intended to become an artist. It just sort of happened that way.
What are your earliest memories of art?
Going to the national gallery of art and seeing my first Picasso in person. Picasso was a huge idol of mine, I adored his work. Seeing the work my family has done. Also watching my mom doodle while on the phone; she would always do that.
What have been some positive influences in your development as an artist?
Music is a huge influence on my work especially jazz and underground hip-hop. If it weren’t for what I listen to I doubt I would be doing what I’m doing now. It’s shown me that there is more than what you see.
Do you have a favorite artist, or school of art?
Willem de Kooning and Charles Schulz. de Kooning for me is the epitome of an artist. Charles Schulz has shown me that you can do a lot with very little, and that it isn’t wrong to do it your own way.
Did you receive a formal education in Arts? If not how did you learn to use the materials and media that you choose?
I am a self-taught artist. I learned through trial and error. It's all about experimentation for me. Finding out what works and what doesn't. It's part of the thrill of being an artist. To discover things you didn't know yesterday.
What is your opinion of arts education? Is an artist born or made - or both?
I think going to art school won't make or break you. I know quite a few great artists who didn't have any formal training at all. But I think it does help.
I think an artist is born and made. I feel as though I was born to do this, to be an artist. But it also just didn't happen overnight either. It's taken me a lot of hard work to get where I am today with my work.
What do you feel most influences your current attitude/style in painting/media.
Everything influences my work. Inspiration is everywhere. Inspiration never chooses a timely hour to appear. I think you have to be able to recognize it when you see it. It comes from the music I listen to, the artists I like, the sky, sunsets, everything.
Has your passion for art detracted from your success in other areas (i.e.
have you had to "suffer" to do what you love)?
Art has not detracted from anything. Art has become my life, and has changed my life forever. I don't think an artist has to suffer to make great art. They just have to stay true to themselves.
If someone asks you "what do you do", how do you respond?
Simply, "I'm an artist".
What are you currently working on? How is it different from past works?
I’m working on new drawings at the moment. They’re different and then they aren’t different. I’m also working on my assemblages where I take everyday objects and arrange them in a certain way; they get photographed, and disassembled.
Do you feel you evolve as an artist?
Of course, evolving is essential and it's something that interests me a great deal. Art is all about moving forward for me.
Describe a day in the life of you, the artist:
I usually get up pretty early in the morning. I like starting on my work early. I'll usually start on a few small drawings. Then if I need to I'll cut more paper for the larger drawings. Then I'll usually spend the rest of the day working on the large drawings, or perhaps working on my assemblages. I'm always keeping an eye out for interesting objects, and ideas that I would like to include. When I'm working time flies by so quickly. It's kind of hard to get all that you want done in a day. I also get to the gym at some point during the day. It's nice to get away from thinking about art even if only for a few hours. By the time I get what I want done its usually time for bed, time to sleep and start all over again.
How important is the company of other artists and creative individuals to your well being and creative output.
It’s not entirely important to me, but it is important for me to have these relationships with these people. It’s interesting to have people around you who can relate to you on an artistic level. I get inspired quite a bit by the people I’ve come into contact with. But I also don’t mind spending time alone, which is what I prefer.
Do you dislike/disdain the works of other artists?
I like a lot of work other artists make. That doesn’t mean I like everything they make. Art is about finding your own voice, and being able to express it your own way. It’s exciting to see something that you’ve never seen before.
Do you display your works? If so, where have you displayed.
I'm not displaying any of my work at the moment.
Do you have any words of wisdom for artists trying to "break out" and begin to learn the business of art.
Don't be afraid.
Do you find that the practical aspects of selling, promoting and marketing yourself as an artist detracts from your creative process?
It doesn’t detract from my creative process. It's all a part of being an artist, and getting your work out there for everyone to see. If you don’t make time for any of this no one will ever know what you do. Good business is the best kind of art, right?
What is the goal of art!
To inspire, that’s what it means to me. Keep moving forward, but always look back.
What are your goals as an artist?
To inspire others the way I’ve been inspired. To keep moving my work forward and to not become formulaic with what I’m doing.
We are more than what we make, what other activities do you enjoy?
I enjoy reading, listening to music, going to concerts, going to libraries. I also like going to the gym and working out. But it's kind of hard to get away from art because it's become who I am as a person.
What do you do to get over the visual equivalent of "writer’s block"
I think this quote by Chuck Close says it all; it’s something I’ve though about for a long time now.
"The advice I like to give young artists, or really anybody who'll listen to me, is not to wait around for inspiration. Inspiration is for amateurs; the rest of us just show up and get to work. If you wait around for the clouds to part and a bolt of lightning to strike you in the brain, you are not going to make an awful lot of work. All the best ideas come out of the process; they come out of the work itself. Things occur to you. If you're sitting around trying to dream up a great art idea, you can sit there a long time before anything happens. But if you just get to work, something will occur to you and something else will occur to you and something else that you reject will push you in another direction. Inspiration is absolutely unnecessary and somehow deceptive. You feel like you need this great idea before you can get down to work, and I find that's almost never the case."
In 20 years, what are your aspirations, what would you like to achieve.
I would like to continue what I'm doing. There aren't any real goals I would like to achieve; I think that’s unrealistic. I don't know what’s going to happen tomorrow. I like the uncertainty of art. I could be dead tomorrow and that would be the end of the story. What’s more important to me is right now, because Time is all we have.
Have you done any commercial, public or commissioned work?
I have not done any commercial or public commissioned work.
Favorite writer, favorite song, favorite inspiration?
Not so much writer but more so a favorite book “de Kooning: An American Master”, My favorite song is "Oh By The Way" by Art Blakey. As for my favorite inspiration I don't have one.
What is the most beautiful thing in the world?
What is beauty?
Beauty is what you make of it. Cliché I know..
How has the internet changed your promotional activities?
It's enabled me to show my work to the world. A lot more people get to see what is I do.
Where can one view your work online?
www. myspace. com/highendart is the only place to view my work online currently.