Painting

Painting

My relationship with canvas has been a tumultuous one. Coming from a poor rural school district, even our advanced studio art program (which I tested into every year) couldn’t afford proper oil painting supplies. I intended to rectify this in art school¬†but discovered the disadvantage of a state school program. The Ohio State college of fine art was obsessed in the early aughts with encouraging the next Roy Lichtenstein (an OSU MFA graduate) to flower, not the next George Bellows (attended OSU but did not graduate). Thus, I received lots of helpful information on how to stage an interesting and provocative gallery show or try new daring ideas in multimedia, but very little instruction in the way of actual craft and skill of painting. Medium, mixing, glazing, varnishing, scumbling, and the like were all things I’d have to learn later from youtube videos.

The problem was so bad, and my skills so undeveloped, that after graduating with Honors in painting I prepared (along with another like-minded graduate) to issue a scathing editorial to the newspapers in Columbus. The editorial never happened, we both moved out of Ohio for good, moving on both physically and emotionally from the experience.

However, the damage was done. I did not feel confident to show (or even continue to make) my art anymore. I moved to Los Angeles not long after graduating with the hopes of rekindling my earlier passion for music and deliberately forgot about (making) fine art for the next five years.

After giving up on the dream of music after many failed jam sessions and craigslist responses I began pursuing an MBA. Ironically it was in business school that I met my muse. Propelled both by her encouragement to begin making art again (for she was a trained and working fashion designer) and by the availability of such a good model I began to paint again, using the same learning tactics employed as an MBA student to produce a more polished and exacting product.

To my surprise, the work wasn’t terrible anymore. I dove back in and within a year began to show my work at the Hive Gallery in downtown Los Angeles. However, the Hive Gallery was a group show gallery (which was an unfortunate growing trend in the new brow genre of art at the time) constraining artists to produce on a theme (halloween, insects, 80s movies, etc., whatever the gallery thinks will interest the public) every month.

The pressure to concept, create, and deliver work on a monthly basis while working full time and attempting to complete an MBA became incredibly stressful. I stopped participating in the shows about a year after I began.

As time wore on and writing took over I spent less time painting, now without a deadline to meet.

Eventually, I stopped painting entirely, and my easel now sits empty in the office. I will take it up again one day, but, for now, I want to complete all the stories in my head before I get back to illustrating all the visions.

Almost all of the pieces below are still available, please inquire if interested.