1. How would you describe your artwork to someone who hasn't seen it yet?
I draw my imagery from old photos and am especially keen on ones that are discolored or blurry. I have been using both found photos as well as family photos from my childhood. I would describe my latest paintings as being brightly colored without being overtly cheery. I think they have the general sense of being unfussy and maybe a little haphazard and impulsive but are still very sensitive. I hope that my paintings reflect a feeling of loss and disconnection, something that I have been focusing on.
2. What are your favorite media/supplies/tools to use in your work?
Over the past couple of years I have stuck mainly to acrylic paint; however, in the past few months I have been using oils which I am finally starting to enjoy. I think oil paint has a more interesting tactility to it and is richer and therefore more immediately rewarding to use. I also like to use a product called Self Leveling Gel as a means of making a fast, thick varnish over drawings. It makes an really interesting barrier and sort of intensifies the drawing. Working at an art store also allows me ample opportunity to try new media, but nothing I try seems to hold my attention longer, or is more satisfying, than painting.
3. As an artist, how do you connect with your local community (of artists as well as non-artists)?
I think it is important to actually go out and see shows in your area and try to be engaged. Personally I get a lot out of writing about the art I have seen, as it gives me a chance to flesh out my thoughts and hopefully give back something to the artist in return. I think you should be aware of what is going on around you, because how else can you expect to be relevant as an artist? When it comes to connecting with people uninvolved in the art community, I don't yet know how, unless it is just inviting non-artist friends to shows. I think that most people, especially in a city like Eugene, are open to if not already interested in art.
4. What do we gain in experiencing art when we go to see shows, exhibits, etc that's different than what we experience in seeing art online?
I really don't think there is any comparison between seeing art in person versus on the Internet (unless it is art specifically made to be seen via computer screen). I place a lot of value in being able to study art really really closely (as in inches away), and it just isn't the same when you can't be immersed and stare at a little square of canvas in person. I really do believe that foremost art offers a visceral, physical experience and you miss out on that by just looking at a photograph or reproduction online. Seeing art in person also fosters your community, supporting peers by just being there to look and see.
5. What's your next project going to be?
For my next series of paintings I want to get away from using photographs to an extent, and to leave behind (ironically) my ideas about the past and growing up that I had been working with in the last series. I have a few ideas stored in my head, most of which come from something I have observed in my daily life (people through a window at night, a man with a dog in a car driving by). There is a common thread to all of these instances I am remembering: they are mundane enough to be easily recognizable by anyone but have a clarity that transcends the preoccupations of everyday life. To some extent I am still a little fixated on tragedy. I am also excited preemptively to explore the color schemes I have lined up in my head, blue-gray morning mistiness and acid greens I remember from the weird blue light on the bus at night.