This is my artist of the month interview for boundless gallery. I hope you enjoy reading it and finding out more about me and my artwork. enjoy~
What does being our Artist of the Month mean to you since you were selected by other professional artists?
I was ecstatic when I found out that I was going to be Artist of the Month for July! It is a high honor and important compliment to have my fellow artists whom I respect and admire pick me as the winner of the art e-motions contest. To gain recognition for my work confirms that I am going in the right direction and my art is transforming my emotions, dreams and feelings onto the canvas.
What is your creation process like?
My emotions and thoughts pre determine what is going to develop on the canvas. I work from the subconscious mind and many times I will wake up with an idea every morning. There are so many ideas in my head that I need to carry a sketchbook with me day and night to jot down the thoughts coming from my head. I have been known to be in the middle of a conversation and have to excuse myself to sketch an idea in my book before I lose it. This is the beginning of my creative process and from this point I cannot wait to get to my studio to start painting. I work mainly with acrylics and ink. I like to use them together to achieve the effect I want. For my abstracts I prefer thick acrylic paint and using the palette knife to mix and push the paint around the canvas. I don’t like using brushes and have come to love the sponge and the use of my finger for blending but for my animal portraits, brushes are needed for detailing and creating fur. On occasion, I will dip my whole hand in paint and start creating to see what I come up with. If the subject matter is very specific then it must be planned out. For example, my animal portraits are carefully calculated before I begin.
Does a piece like City Of Two Suns start out in the same way as Captain Death?
These are two very different paintings with two very different approaches. The “City Of Two Suns” is not a planned piece. It took on a life of its own once I started pushing the paint onto the canvas. When I start developing pieces like this I usually have no idea what the outcome will be until it reveals itself in the end. First, I used a palette knife and had a nice cosmic type background and then I decided to blend the colors with a sponge, from this point I took my sponge again and started making shapes and saw a city in my mind and then it just developed from there. I knew I wanted to use the paint straight from the tube to top it off for a 3D effect and it was perfect for the top of the buildings. The colors were put together subconsciously and consecutively. I really liked this piece when it was finished. I feel freedom from it because I was so free in developing this concept.
Captain Death was fun even though it was a calculated and planned piece. I really enjoy the subject of pirates and skeletons. My clients love Pirates and a lot of my commissioned work is custom pirate art for homes, bars, clubs and restaurants. In starting this piece, I knew what the outcome was going to be and exactly what I wanted to achieve. So, there is a big difference in my planned and unplanned artworks. At the end of all my planned pieces my subconscious mind will take over and add some free details and creativity to each piece which makes them interesting and unique.
Do You Own A Mastiff?
Yes, I own a French Mastiff or Dogue De Bordeaux and a Pug Dog. I have owned Bullmastiffs in my life and love the Giant breeds. They are like old souls. Having always been an animal lover since childhood I had started out sketching dogs and horses. My French Mastiff is a certified therapy dog and canine good citizen and we volunteer our free time at local hospitals and nursing homes to help sick and elderly people. In 2008, I donated 3 – 24 x 48″ paintings to the bright and beautiful therapy dog organization to raise money for their program and to keep therapy dogs in our facilities. The community medical center in toms river NJ purchased the 3 paintings for $7500.00 and that money went into the therapy dog fund. The paintings are now a permanent public collection on three floors of the hospital -Oncology, Hospice and Outpatient Radiology.