At first I wanted to be a geneticist. I went to school for organic chemistry. I always wanted to change the world, and I loved Science, and art was not something that you could do for a living … that was what everyone said. And while I drew all the time, by the time I had finished college I had all but one class in a Fine art degree, it was never even an option I looked at! Then one year at a show called Origins where I was attending, I met an artist who lived in my area. His name was Andy Hopp, he and I hung out while I was finishing up my degree which ended up being in Philosophy (long story). Then when I was 27, I graduated and started looking at applying to grad school. That was when I decided to I take the dive and with my new portfolio I showed my work. And that was a good time, and it was immediately profitable at the shows I was attending. So given that I just kept booking more shows. It was weird I as doing the thing I had always been told I was never going to be able to do! That cool hobby was becoming a career. But really it was when my daughter wanted me to paint her a pretty ballerina for her 9th birthday that I knew I was making the right decision. I painted her, “Make Me Pretty”, a piece about being yourself and not worrying about what others want you to be. It was the first time I really just allowed my self to paint a painting that was illustrating an emotion. When the piece hit the shows … The response was amazing it was a piece that spoke to so many people about how they felt. That piece was what convinced me that I was doing the right thing. Art was my way to change the world.
What do you want visitors and locals to know about being an artist that they may not already know?
Art is something that should move you! It is the thing that should spark conversation in your home and let people know a bit about who you are as a person. Things can look cool but if that is where it stops you could do much better.
Art is a compulsion not a choice. When you are an artist, the art will dominate your life. You may want to be something else but really you are an artist.
How has the industry evolved over the years?
When I started I wanted to be an illustrator for role playing game books, but I was more skilled in doing Fine art than fantasy art. I was terrible at doing the things in other people’s heads! Not the stuff that was in my head, that I was really good at! As time went on the companies still wanted specific art but the customers began to appreciate more and more art that provokes emotion. Now we are seeing a desire for more meaningful art for everything. The meaning is now as important as the skill. It is an exciting time!
What inspires you for your art?
Simple answer is Philosophy. But more to the point, I am inspired by the need to tell people about the world as I see it!
What’s next for you?
A move to Europe, we are trying out some new painting techniques, and maybe some oil and digital crossover pieces. But mostly we are preparing to move to Europe probably France.
Describe being an artist in 5 words or less
Need to share your world.
What social media do you use?