Hi folks! First of all, good news, I have been accepted to the Twilight Artist Collective in West Seattle. Prints of my work are not available there. Follow the link :)
Twilight Artist Collective
I also have some stuff at Box Top Vintage in Tacoma! I dropped stuff off with them this weekend on my way out of town. I drove to the Oregon Coast this weekend for a good friend's wedding. With me I took a list of things I needed to shoot for my artwork along the way and I was able to find everything on my list! Old motel signs, a wide open field, a prison and a casino. Everything seemed like it would be pretty easy to find but I didn't hold out too much hope for the prison until I saw a sign about 3/4 through my drive that said "Federal Penitentiary Exit 33" Well that was easy! ha! I needed photos of one for a piece I'm working on with John Dillinger walking away from a prison and I'm glad I found a more than suitable background! The only person in the world to be happy to see a prison, that's me.
We used to live near a prison I called the peach prison in Denver when I was a kid and I would always stare at it really hard every time we went by, especially after I heard the Oklahoma City Bomber was transferred there.
Anyway, point being it's been a long time since I've seen a prison, living in Seattle and I've been lucky enough to have never seen the inside of one or even close up to visit someone. So I drove up slowly, there was no one outside at all just some cameras and loud speakers and started to take pictures. I wish that I would have been able to take more but I was asked to leave after a few shots. However, that's the beauty of mixed media. I was inspired by something that struck me as ironic but I wasn't able to get the best shot of it. The gates were surrounded, every inch in razor wire and circling the razor wire was hundreds of birds. Seemed to me to be a metaphor for freedom in which ever direction you prefer. Here's the photo I got
So even though the photos didn't have exactly what I saw in them, it gave me a picture in my head of someone walking away from the prison with hundreds of crows flying behind their head, which I will draw, or photograph to add to this piece later. I would also like to get some more razor wire at a different angle because this photo doesn't really demonstrate just HOW MUCH there was, it was insane. I felt pretty lucky that I at least got to snap a few shots though. It wasn't all good luck though. I also went to a junk yard yesterday filled with the frames of some GORGEOUS old cars, rusted and wonderful, but I was stopped the second I got there. I didn't think it was THAT private of property. When I got there the owner and his dog had already heard me coming down the road and came out to meet me and shoo me off. He was covered from head to toe in dirt and a mean look on his face, his dog looked about the same. Very interesting, very humbling. Going to new places is DEFINITELY humbling. Sometimes I feel like being a photographer makes me a thief, but I think it's all in the way you approach it and humility is probably a pretty good start.
For the last couple of months Mike Folden has been working with me on creating a video that helps describe my work and how it all comes together at the suggestion of a couple of professionals who's opinion I trust very much. Apparently it's been difficult to understand the medium for some people who would like a user friendly explanation of "What" it is.
I personally feel that the goal of an artist is to express a feeling or idea in their head and in order to succeed at that, an artist should use whatever is necessary and available to convey that image from their brains. Mediums don't matter too much to me.It's a means to an end.
Being diverse is not celebrated nearly enough in the art world. Using a variety of skills that you have picked up in your lifetime and meshing them into one package whether it be technical skills you picked up in art school or something you learned working as a graveyard waitress in a diner, it all has it's purpose and can be turned into something useful.
I am a painter who went to photography school. I do portraits, nice, clean portraits. I also take very disturbing, raw and gritty photos. In school I was told I needed to focus on one thing. People often asked me why I was doing photography? In my paintings I felt something was missing. Portraiture is fun, but without a theme or environment I felt like I wasn't doing it much justice and photography has great potential for texture and realism . I could create environments, sample textures , collect places and things and combine them with my illustration perspective and there it was! I got what I had always been wanting to see, what was in my head was finally there.
Enough Soapbox, with that said Mike Folden did a REALLY excellent job of conveying what it is I do in under 3 minutes, showing you a piece from start to finish, making it interesting and expressing to the viewer who I am. The amount of effort he put into this is astounding and I'll always be grateful that I had just the right person for the job.
Now a couple of announcements
I'm excited to say that I will have an opening for all my new work in December back on Capitol Hill again for the first time in 3 years. I am excited after doing shows in other cities this year to hopefully have a big fun opening with all my local friends soon. With luck and a lot of hard work, I might also have the Tarot Deck with me at that time. I have a plan to make it happen and we'll hope it goes according to it. The people that have been going out of their way to come to house and model have been a big part of making this deadline and I'm really very grateful.
I have been accepted to the Twilight Arts collective for both my multi media work and my paintings which is extremely exciting for me and means I will soon have prints, pendants and paintings in their West Seattle location for sale.
For the moment I have to focus on painting and merchandise and then it's nose to the grindstone to complete this deck in time for Christmas. The accomplishment of that would be the best Christmas present there is for me.
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