I have had many influences in my life and in my art. I started drawing at an early age and was always encouraged by my parents, but especially by my grandmother. She and my grandfather both carved and painted wood sculptures well into their eighties. I had an art class in 7th grade and then a drawing class in college where I learned basics on perspective and light sources. Other than that I wing it. I do plan to one day get some formal training and learn to do this stuff right. A friend and fellow artist, Obie Hughes told me an old adage that has always stuck with me: "You have to know the rules before you can break the rules." Well I certainly have no problem bending them for sure.
The artists that first appealed to me were Kandinsky, Dali and Picasso. To be able to take the ordinary and make it abstract or surreal has always appealed to me. I would later have the pleasure to meet and work with two of my favorite living artists John Pitre and Jim Warren. John Pitre's ability to put what is in his mind on canvas so elegantly has always drawn me to his work. He is a brilliant thinker and artist. Jim's portrait ability is uncanny and to take that and mix it with surreal elements creates truly one of a kind unique work. I learned a lot working with various artists at Wyland Galleries and am always amazed at how each artist goes about creating their works.
Being an admirer and collector of tattoos I think it finds a way to sneak in here and there in some of my pieces. Obie Hughes and Corey Miller have been big influences and inspirations (and a source of painful color) for me over the years, and I have recently fallen in love with Joe Capobianco's Blood Puddin' style. An incredibly unforgiving medium and those with true talent stand above the rest.
I am not normal or ordinary and would be offended if you thought otherwise. I take influences from all areas of life and enjoy putting my own spin on comic art as well as twisting the ordinary and the extraordinary. Please don't try to imagine what my frame of mind was when creating some of this (it's a scary place, you don't want to go there). Just look at it from your own reference point and hopefully I will have evoked feelings and made an impact.
"I will not hide my tastes or aversions. I will so trust that what is deep is holy, that I will do strongly before the sun and moon whatever only rejoices me, and the heart appoints." - Ralph Waldo Emerson