a)I am 5’9, love animals, hate okra, love fruit, drive a Jeep Wrangler, wear big boots, was born in Detroit, MI, have 6 rescue animals, perform in a solo music project called AfterChain, love to get snail mail, must wear socks to sleep and I dream almost every night.
q) How would you describe your work?
a)My creations are very personal, dark with a hint of light, easy for my viewers to pull their own interpretations from, balanced, meaningful, otherworldly, hard hitting, in your face and honest.
q) Did somebody encourage you to become an artist?
a)There was a teacher in junior high school that always made an effort to inform me that I was talented. Although I did not believe him at that point in my life since I was such an outcast with very low self-esteem, yet I came to realize that he might not have been too far off track.
q) What is your favourite medium?
a)I love everything. Being an artist and musician there is really very little that I am limited to. I am always up to trying something new. I have acted in an opera (2000, Le Contes De Hoffmann, Detroit Opera House), helped in film production, and many other things that have expanded my abilities. Recently I started to play around with film editing and I love that. Anything that challenges my creative process and gives me a way to express myself is what I consider a favourite. I also really enjoy work that demands unity of people, anything collaborative is right up my alley.
q) Can you describe your process, from the seed of an idea to a complete work?
a)You know, I just do. I typically don’t think about what I want to do, it’s more of a feeling that I get and then I try and put those feelings into a creation. What the final product is I never really know, but most times it is an actual representation of the emotions I wanted to put into my work. I feel, create, absorb, share and do it all over again.
q) Generally speaking, where do your ideas come from?
a)Very personal emotional experiences or feeling in my life. Most work has a female character, and I use myself to portray her. Creativity as a process has become a vessel for me to take a journey to heal myself and grow as a person. We all have experiences in our life that are less than fortunate, and ones that are amazingly wonderful, I take all those emotions and use them as the core of where my projects start and weave outward my voice into something tangible. A large part of my work more specifically deals with abuse and domestic violence, and can be used as a tool to provide awareness.
q) How long does it take to complete a piece?
a)Often it can take from 5 hours to the 20’s, depends on the piece really. It is typical for me to start a piece and not stop until I am finished. A food break, a walk outside, play with my animals, but I never really lay something to rest and come back to it later. Since I work with pure feeling, impulses and emotions, if I leave something alone too long it loses personal impact for me and I just can’t finish it.
q) Who are your favourite artists…and who are some artists you are currently looking/listening to?
a)Children are my favourite artists. They are not afraid (until someone makes them that way) and they create because it’s fun and enjoyable. Not to mention they love to get messy, and into what they are doing. There is typically no holding back. It’s pure, real and just plain awesome.
q) Are you represented by a gallery? Do you have any upcoming exhibits?
a)I don’t have one gallery specifically representating me at this point, but I have many galleries supporting my work. I do have many upcoming exhibitions, right now there is currently 7 listed and I am always adding to the roster. (Ft. Collins, CO, St. Louis, MO, Detroit, MI, South Beach, FL and Los Angeles, CA, Santa Ana, CA) If people would like more specific information about these please visit my website listed below and check out under the exhibitions section.
q) Do you have any 'studio rituals'? As in, do you listen to certain types of music while working? What helps to get you in the mood for working?
a)I adore music and I am always listening to something, a cup of crushed ice to chew on, my glasses, and heathy snack food.
q) What is your favourite a) taste, b) sound, c) sight, d) smell, and e) tactile sensation?
a)Taste: Foreign FoodSound: Weather (Wind, rain, storms, etc.)Sight: CloudsSmell: Amber IncenseTactile: Petting Animals
q) Do you have goals that you are trying to reach as an artist, what is your 'drive'? What would you like to accomplish in your 'profession'?
a)My goals as a whole could end this interview into pages of text, but I will keep it limited and give you some ideas. I think one of my overall goals is to be that voice for others that can’t speak out, and to ultimately take raw personal experiences and feed them to the public. It s okay to feel (good or bad) and it’s a matter of how one deals with these emotions. I feel that the world has closed eyes to many things, most importantly human soul searching and suffering and maybe my creations could open a few eyes.q) When have you started using the internet and what role does this form of communication play for you, personally, for your art, and for your business?
As for my drive it is like some type of addiction really. If I don’t create for an extended period of time I get cranky like a smoker who has not had a cigarette for hours. Creation consumes me at times and it is like I am not driving, and there is another force in control. It’s impulsive, powerful, and intense. The amount of work I have created in the last 3 years could be someone’s life work of 50 years.
a)It is one of the greatest avenues for connecting. As for right now I have fans in places like Mexico, France, Germany as well as the US and I attribute some of that to the use of the internet. The internet is informative, great for connecting to my fans and keeping them informed. It has helped my exhibiting history; I’ve had close to 75 exhibitions in 3 years.
q) What do you obsess over?
a)I am obsessive compulsive you might be asking the wrong person this question, ha. I obsess over foreign food, fruit smoothies, clouds, equipment (music gear, software, etc.), body modifications, animal rights, freedom of expression, and my own work.
q) Do you have preferred working hours? Do you pay attention to the time of the day or maybe specific lighting?
a)I enjoy working at night, as it is quiet and I ‘m not compelled to go romping around outside like I do during the day. I also enjoy working during the day mostly on rainy/cloudy days.
q) Do you do commissioned works?
a)Yes, when I have time to do them. I take pleasure in commissioned work because it breaks my creation visions into another direction, and it challenges me to do something that I would not typically do on my own time.q) Any tips for emerging artists?
a)If you’re not doing what you love, just stop now.