I though I might tell you about what I do.
First and foremost - I am a family man. I am married to an amazing woman. We have two daughters and a third on the way in August. My girls are the only thing in this world that really matter.
After that - I am an artist and a professional creative. I'm 34 years old. I am a classically trained sculptor with a B.F.A. from U.N.T. I am a trained animator, illustrator, and painter. I can draw. I am a writer and a well-seasoned public speaker. I am certified to teach art in the state of Texas - though Texas does not want artists as teachers. I have a decade of experience in marketing and graphic design in both the for, and non-, profit sectors. I develop websites, can program in several computer languages, take apart and rebuild a small engine, weld and fabricate steel, I'm a decent plumber, and I know my way around the realm of carpentry. I am a really shitty photographer and couldn't play an instrument if you forced me at gunpoint - but I know people who do both well.
The real truth is....I get bored easily. When I get bored, I make things. That's the simple view....
The more complex description of what I do is more difficult to put into words. If you could say it with words, there would be no reason to paint it, sculpt it, build it, or put it into song...but I'll give it a shot.
I make the work I do out of a belief that the art world has been hijacked by the sad, angry, misunderstood poser. Now, I'm not saying that everyone in the art world is a poser. I love the art world - it's my world. But I do believe that the modern sense of what is, and is not art, is skewed to benefit the 'luxury' art market while making it nearly impossible for the small working artist to make a living. The 'luxury' art market is best represented by Damien Hirst. See, Damien owns a company. This company buys and sells his work - with the sole intent on raising the market value of his work. Do I hate him for this? No. Do I think he is directly responsible for the deterioration of the concept of 'art'? Partly. Yes.
Art, for eons, was about reflecting the ideals and nature of a society through icons and images. Art was celebrated. It was a way to make your society's mark. To tell people about who you were. But - nostalgia is for pussies and tea party patriots, so I'll get back on track.
As artists we must learn to speak from our own perspectives and with our own voices. Not with the language that Art in America tells us we should use. When we follow the latest trend - we let down our craft. Art is about experiments, fear, and failure. Its about exploring your own inner workings and dragging out something spectacular that no one has ever seen before.
If you start a piece knowing what it will look like at the end - you have a hobby. If you can even think about not getting into your studio or writing or performing...if you need a 'break' from your work....if you just 'don't have time to paint'...you have a hobby. I'm not being a dick here. Hobbies are good to have. But just buying some paint at the Hobby Lobby does not make you an artist. Slapping up some stencils because you're a "rebel" like Banksy does not make you an artist. Real art takes work and dedication - and a bit of suffering.
If your creative vision keeps you up at night, if you cannot even consider 'quitting', if you have learned to live on 4 hours of sleep because that's all you have time for, if every time you sit down in front of a blank canvas or piece of paper or score you are terrified that you will fail but yet you push on - you are an artist, and you have my undying love and respect.
I make the work I make because I have to. There is no choice. I use the mediums I do because they chose me. I work tirelessly in my attempt to prove that art can be energetic and meditative, calm and aggressive, overwhelming in scale yet intimate in concept, and that all I need are 6 colors and a bucket of geometric shapes to make my point. Have I succeeded? Hell no. Will I keep trying? You're goddamn right.
I am also on a mission to prove that the small market artist can make it on their own. The problem with our world is that there is no 'training ground'. No middle management. No farm league where you can make a decent living while you hone your skills. You are either insanely successful, or starving. Feast or famine. It does not have to be this way.
I created 'process' to prove that their can be an alternative to what currently exists. Visit www.process-works.com to see how my company can give you the tools you need to reach a broader audience and start making a buck. Or email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. If we stand together we can take back the world that is our rightful inheritance. We can take back 'art'.
Thanks everyone! And a big thanks to Nick and the gang at The Root 66...good people with an amazing vision.
Artist - Teacher - Misfit