Stories enrich our lives. They teach us, inspire us, entertain us and connect us to one another. The notion of storytelling is what reflects on the past, records the present and projects the future. We can’t escape our nature and affinity for telling stories. It’s how we know who we are and what we strive to become. This method is documented thoroughly in the formula known as “The Hero’s Journey.” At its core, there is a problem, reaction and ultimately a solution. The story connects us all through the ages. It’s essentially the origin of the notion of good vs evil, hero vs villain… Duality to put it simply.
Technology has made it possible for everyone to tell their stories. Stories of epic heroism have been shared with the world via internet connection as have stories of frightening horror and stupidity. As opposed to past ages, so long as we can assume, humanity has never had the capability to share stories as widely as it can now. One story that has always struck a chord with me is that of the Alien franchise.
While HR Giger has had a massive influence on my artwork, the franchise he contributed his visual style to has had an epic story that’s assisted in shaping the lense in which I see through. We as humans are facing some serious issues which need to be addressed yet society seems more concerned with the wasted chromosomes of the Kardashians.
I like to learn from people who are familiar with the seemingly abstract world of the Arts, especially the ones who are savvy in the business department. Art is a tricky career to navigate because it truly is what you make of it. Most artists aren’t as savvy in the art of business as they are fine art. Some artists are great at hustling their wares on the street corners of the Pike Place Market, while others find their monetization in prestigious galleries and private collections of the rich and famous. Finding your place in the art world is so difficult for many “starving artists” because the field is so diverse, and they simply know how to make their work but lack the knowledge of how to market it. I’ve found this to be the case with many products to be honest, but none as much as art.
One year for Christmas I received a painting from my mom who got it from a street artist in Mexico for $20. It really made this point clear to me because it was so amazing and so beautiful it had to be worth more as it was an original. That wasn’t the case because the artist defined his price and what his work/time was worth by the way he marketed himself. Handing out fine art to buy dinner on a street corner seems very sad in many cases but it’s why I was always so reserved about letting my work go for any price. It’s a valuable part of me and I want it to sell for more than the price of a dinner at a fast food restaurant. This is why I follow people like Carolyn Edlund AKA ArtsyShark, Alyson B Stanfield AKA ArtBizCoach, and College Art Association or CAA.
I’ll also mention that marketing is not the only thing that adds value to art. One major factor in the value of a piece is by its contribution to the marketplace of ideas. There’s definitely more to art than beauty. One great example of this is that of José Guadalupe Posada. According to Wikipedia “José Guadalupe Posada was a Mexican political printmaker and engraver whose work has influenced many Latin American artists and cartoonists because of its satirical acuteness and social engagement.” A late family friend was kind enough to gift this amazing original to me about a decade ago. Another close friend was so inspired by it that he had it converted into a tattoo. Art truly is transcendent.
As an artist I put a lot of time, sweat, tears, blood and bone (literally) into my work. Nothing makes me feel more complete then the process of breathing life into a new creation. I don’t make the same piece twice and they all have their own personalities while reflecting a part of mine. Each with its own name, color palette, idea behind its conception and purpose for existing, they all comprise a larger body of work and a compete picture of the power of 3 (Mind, Body and Spirit)
Find more of my work and connect with me at the following locations:
My Website (Under Construction)
I think of my art as a piece of my soul. How much would you sell your soul for? Personally, I would never sell mine. I hate the notion of attaching dollar signs to my artwork because it truly is priceless. How do you price the remains of a human?
I suppose you could place medical value such as a liver replacement for a transplant patient. That could be tens of thousands of dollars depending on the procedure. However, I’m not selling organs. I’m selling memorials to people who have lost loved ones.
The average cost of a funeral is astronomical. A block of stone as a memorial alone could total $10,000-$50,000 + easily. The way I see return on investment is quite different than dollar signs. I seek the solace of loved ones who have lost someone close to them. I want them to find peace in my creation. They need to know that the one they love still exists and is part of “The All.” I want them to be able to look at the painting or sculpture I create for them and be comforted by the knowledge that their father or mother or sister or brother or daughter or son or husband or wife still exists on another plane and is still with them forever and always. I define success as the ability to comfort people in the most difficult challenge we must all eventually face, death.
From the beginning of time, mankind has been telling stories. We see evidence through the artifacts of the ancient world from the relics of the bronze age to the masterpieces of the classical age and eventually to the allegories that parallel our modern world. The story of Atlantis is one that has always captured my imagination.
I recently saw a documentary on Netflix (marketed through social media) that made my heart flutter. Artist and hustler Damien Hurst set out to put his money where his mouth was and finance something awesome. I really don’t think he anticipated the results of his endeavors. The crew he financed made the discovery of a lifetime and more.
They were looking for underwater treasure and what they found was more than a dream come true times a trillion. I have very few words to describe what was found because it changes what we know of our own history. Watch the documentary and if you can go see the otherworldly work that was uncovered in person don’t hesitate. The golden medusa head is my favorite piece.
Stories are the currency of connection. The way we communicate as individuals is all about self-expression. We project ourselves in the way we tell stories. This is partially ego driven but with an underlying desire to share truth with others. We all contribute to this truth as a collective primarily through social media. The internet has made our ability to share the information we wish to project extremely fast and efficient. As we venture into the age of AI (Artificial Intelligence) we face many challenges. This is where we see a double edge sword in the vision forward. The story of Terminator comes to mind.
There are two primary schools of thought. It’s the age-old battle between past, present and future. There are some who say our technology will be our downfall, while there are others who dive in head first and whole heartedly without question of danger. What do you think will happen once the world comes to realize the singularity? Stay tuned as the plot thickens.