What is your approach to painting? Do you have an idea of what to paint beforehand, or does the idea arrive on–the–spot?
Often I will have a conceived plan. The emotions felt at the time play a strong role in outcome. They also determine the scale, use of tools and the method of using those tools to create different textures and compositions. Very seldom do I work on a piece not knowing how it will work out in the end. In those instances, they are rarely as successful.
What/who are your inspirations?
I'm inspired not just by life's big moments, but also by its nuances. Nature, interactions with strangers, religion, personal politics among others come into play. As for notable people, my work comes from respect for European and American artists such as Gerhard Richter, Mark Rothko and Cy Twombly.
When did you know you wanted to become an artist?
I don't recall the exact day, as it was perhaps another idea among many for myself "when I grow up." I liked to draw and was curious at a young age about where I would be later on. I began to dabble with colored pencils, pastels, graphite, watercolors and eventually oils. Art classes fascinated me and I suppose it wasn't until college that I felt I was really gaining traction. My mind started filling up with opinions and ideas I wanted to spill onto the canvas. Even today the well is still full.
How do you know when a particular piece of work is finished?
This is one of the most intangible aspects of my process. At times, I have made one stroke too many and I've had to begin again. It is only at the moment when the painting on the canvas aligns with the image in my head that I put down the tools.
I like your work, but I have a specific color palette and size in mind. Are you available for commission?
Absolutely. The experience of collaboration between both parties is one of the most gratifying reasons why I paint. Often the piece commemorates a special event or occasion and as a result, becomes a treasured object that carries significant meaning.
What types of tools do you typically use to create your unique paintings?
I use tools that you can find at the local hardware store. Things like drywall scrapers and window washers that help push and wipe paint. Other tools like putty knives and brushes are also incorporated that contribute to the style of my work.
Why do you choose to paint instead of any other art form like drawing or sculpting?
I have had a great amount of experience with drawing and painting and still enjoy experimenting whenever possible. From the moment I began painting abstractly, I fell in love with its expressiveness. Moving and manipulating the paint, sliding it over the canvas felt very natural, almost primal. It allows me to make a more significant "mark" on the surface, which has become somewhat of a recognizable element in my artwork.
How do I purchase a piece of artwork from you? Do I have to go through a representative or can I deal with you specifically?
If the piece is represented by a gallery, you should contact them directly to make arrangements. Once you have done so, the piece (if located in the studio) will be yours to take home. Otherwise it will be shipped to you directly. If the work is not represented by a gallery, I will be happy to assist you.
Once purchased, how do I care for my new piece of artwork?
If the piece has been recently completed and contains a great deal of texture, the paint may still be wet. Even though it may be dry to the touch, the paint beneath the outer layer can break through if something contacts it. Always handle from the sides or behind the painting, never touching the surface as oils in your skin can contribute to discoloration over time. Lastly, be sure to keep your painting away from direct sunlight as this can also lead to discoloration and even warping.
Is your studio always open? Are you always there, or do I have to schedule an appointment?
Anyone interested in viewing artwork in person is encouraged to contact me directly through email or by phone to make an appointment. This way, we can make sure we have the maximum amount of time to discuss the art at our leisure, without feeing rushed.
What advice would you give to other artists who are trying to expose their work to a greater audience?
If you are passionate enough to pursue a matter of the heart such as painting or any other art form – an effort underscored by the fact that you are figuratively walking naked for all to see – then approach it with all you have. Do not be afraid to fail extravagantly. As an artist, your responsibility is to convey your view of the world and touch someone in the process. Seek out like-minded people. Seek criticism. Seek inspiration.
What would you do if you couldn't paint?
I find it difficult to stop creating things, my mind is constantly thinking about problems and how to fix them. I also enjoy working with my hands and seeing something take shape as I am building it. All aspects of design fascinate me, as it requires a lot of problem solving and working with people. That said, I don't think I could work in an environment that doesn't require me to interact with society in some way.
How do you overcome creative blocks? Do you sketch? Do you listen to music?
Whenever a creative block happens, it is almost always the result of trying to conjure inspiration out of thin air. It is sometimes successful, but I try to keep focused on what's on my mind in order to facilitate the outcome. I seldom listen to music in the studio because I find it distracting. Usually, I will try to think of something else, leave the studio, get something to eat or drink and come back with a fresh perspective.
What is the biggest accomplishment you have had in your artistic career?
In July of 2011 my work was accepted for representation by Agora Gallery in New York City. As an artist, this presents a significant opportunity for me to reach a broader audience in the heart of the art capital of the U.S. Agora Gallery has been a mainstay in Chelsea for over 27 years, representing many talented national and international artists.