It’s that time again! I wanted to focus my energy this season on making my local community a better place through the gift of storytelling. Armed with my camera, computer and a call to action, I’m determined to uplift those in need. Stay tuned 😉
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)
The most informative content that I adapt to my process almost always comes from the inspirational people I follow online. There are thousands of great artists sharing their work online and many are putting content out there that is designed to help other artists grow as business professionals. There are some great people I follow on various social media platforms as well as their blogs, YouTube channels, websites and even virtual worlds. Some of them include people like Carolyn Edlund AKA ArtsyShark, Alyson B Stanfield AKA ArtBizCoach, and College Art Association or CAA. These people have amazing content that I learn so much from.
Some of the communities I engage with online include professionals that work for tech companies like Adobe, Autodesk, Unreal and Unity. They have YouTube channels where they share tips/tricks, how to tutorials, information about new features and most importantly live project and portfolio reviews. The folks over at Adobe were even kind enough to review one of my designs via live video feed. They checked out a ferrofluid style page set up I had created as an online store using Adobe XD which I was beta testing at the time. It was great to get their valuable feedback and I look forward to each live feed I manage to come across because it gives me an opening to have my work seen by everyone watching their videos.
For the time being, I’m working as a solo artist, so my cohorts and business partners have yet to be developed. From time to time I do bounce ideas for art projects off my fiancé and friends and their honesty gives me an idea about which projects are worth pursuing. Currently I have a project in the works which will be helping a fellow classmate and well-known blogger (Scott Stokes from Northwest Chefs) curate artwork for a virtual coffee shop he is creating in Second Life called BLACK SHEEP. The place looks great and will be an amazing social hub for people from all walks of life. I’m looking forward to contributing to this project and providing great conversation pieces while people enjoy some digital caffeine and ambiance.
Meet my new assistant Boris. He’s always buzy. Just got a new vector face lift.
For as long as I can remember I’ve been a creator. I was always drawing in class when I should have been solving math problems or taking notes in science. There was no medium that was off limits to my artistry. Paintings, sculptures and sketches filled my room growing up. As the years went by, I started to run out of room in my home and office. Eventually it got to the point where I had so much art stacked up that I had nowhere to make more! During my short time studying art at Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle, I remember being taught to be cautious about selling originals so as not to cheapen my collection to a craft as opposed to fine art. This always made me apprehensive about letting my work go. Each piece is a part of me in some way.
After working many years in jobs unrelated to my passion for the sake of paying rent I began to feel as though I wasn’t exercising my strength. Customer service has never been a problem for me, but I was selling other peoples products and not prioritizing my greatest asset, my own artwork. No wonder I wasn’t feeling fulfilled in my career. This really bothered me, so I decided to make some alterations to my direction in life. It was time for a new approach.
With my full dedication and some careful planning, I decided to go back to college, but instead of studying fine art I decided to go after a degree in multimedia graphic design. Graphic artists have increasingly caught my attention as I got older and I began to realize that computers are extremely powerful tools for creating amazing artwork. It was also evident to me that the market place for art is global and that I wanted everyone to see my work. So many sleepless nights and lists of deadlines later, I found myself with great new skills and the ability to market my own artwork online. I even took up photography!
Now art lovers can find me in several major hubs on the internet. I have my own website, a blog on WordPress, a Twitter feed, a Facebook page, an Instagram gallery, a YouTube channel and a portfolio on Behanced. Follow me on these platforms to see the full scope of my creations. From concept development, through process, to final product; see how I do what I do and find out why. My custom prints make great gifts and the originals are true treasures for any collector.