Here is my fourth round of PMS Micro Paintings. All are for sale. You can click on each individual image to purchase. I hope you enjoy them!
Here is my fourth round of PMS Micro Paintings. All are for sale. You can click on each individual image to purchase. I hope you enjoy them!
Over the weekend, I sent this text to my musician friend about my experience with the new (and last) David Bowie album Blackstar. I think it really encapsulates the feelings that I was experiencing during and for a good couple of hours after my listen and the power of great art and a phenomenal artist.
“Just went for a moonlit drive in the bowels of cheviot hills,
with the city skyline over the golf course and park,
cranking Blackstar on my car speakers.
Man, that is the way to listen to that album and digest it.
So good, with the Jazz-like, melancholy horns underscoring
the whole album and Bowie’s painterly words and
pain-soaked vocals throughout. It is still echoing in my head.
So, so good…”
As a matter of fact, since his passing I think I have had my Bowie playlist on repeat without pause. Here is a man, a true artist who not only stayed relevant throughout his entire and massive career, but also remained a trendsetter and consummate performer. He wasn’t afraid to evolve and actually made a career of trying and excelling with his bold choices and major persona shifts. His last two albums were impressive and surprising in there energy, intensity, and complete honesty. Isn’t that what an artist should be doing? Bearing his soul and exposing his personal truths in his art? Well Bowie has succeeded with flying colors and I can’t help but feel some of his pain and melancholy each time I play this final album. But it is not dark and drab, it is inspiring. As with any great album, it takes a few listens for it to get under your skin and believe me it will. I actually wake up with some of the haunting horns and superb lyrics rattling around in my subconscious.
Thanks for the inspiration and an awe-inspiring commitment to your craft and art.
Bowie and the Micros
I constantly listen to music for inspiration and there is never a moment where I paint without it. I believe that the emotions and energy of the music that the artist is listening to gets filtered through him and pieces of it are sprinkled into the work itself. So choose your music wisely my friends. You have heard the expression “You are what you eat”? Well you are what you listen to as well. And you can’t become a talented artist without letting great art seep in through every orifice of your body. So thank you once again Mr. Bowie for leaving your mark hidden in my latest works.
I expanded this week and snuck some imagery into a couple of the new Micros. I can never go too long without fulfilling this need, however I feel like the imagery this week unveiled itself in a very unique way. One of the pieces is actually a photo of a real boy (in its original frame) taken in 1957 near a merry go round, and I heard from the antique store owner that he was a member of some prominent Los Angeles family that owned an electrical company, or something of the sort. I could not pass up this opportunity and found a way to sneak one of my favorite figures into this “time capsule”.
Suffice it to say that I broke some new ground with a couple of these. I hope that you enjoy them!
Have a great week and listen to some inspiring music. You know what my recommendation is..
bowls of currency
of eras past
corners and doorways
where she rattled
under the weight
hoots and hollers
of the crippled cumbersome
and more of the same
suiting for semblance
buying your youth…
I am happy to announce that my painting “The Little Bear And His Masterpiece” has been chosen to be a part of Laluzapalooza next month!
This is the 30th annual Laluzapalooza group show that the famous La Luz De Jesus Gallery will be hosting in Hollywood and opens on Friday, March 4th from 8-11pm to the public and will run until March 27th. This gallery and the artists that it attracts is top notch and their shows are always a crowd pleaser. If you are in the Los Angeles area, it is more than worth the effort to stop by and check out the amazing art. I am honored this year that I get to be a part of it. Hope to see you all there!
Here is the painting I am contributing (come by to see it in person!):
Also, I would love to show you guys my most recent contribution to the PMS Micro Painting series!
I am so happy with how this series is turning out. Each piece is proving to be unique and presents it’s own challenge that I am happy to accept. I feel like they are evolving and making me a better painter with each one. I love how they force me to shift gears so abruptly and challenge me to come up with new solutions in the moment. I feel like I will be having fun with these for some time to come.
Here are the most recent four:
And, I already have one SALE !
I had my first sale of the series, “Who Says I Can’t Be Pretty?” today to a private collector in Los Angeles. I will miss this painting that was in my kitchen for the last week and a half, but I am thrilled that it has a new home with a wonderful person who supports the arts and loves it. Thank you to this wonderful private collector!
That’s it for now y’all. Hope you are having a great week and doing something creative!
I think there is a major fallacy in the art world which insists that an artist must find his or her “voice” or style and then once they do, must regurgitate that voice over and over again, even when it ceases to inspire them.
I have always been of the opposite mindset. From the beginning of my art career, I have been driven to create whatever inspires me in the moment, not considering how it would be labelled. I have found this to be much more exciting and has led to, what I believe to be, more growth as an artist. I have personally switched between figurative, abstract, landscape, still-life, canvas, wood, glass, masonite, oil, ink and variations in between. I have found that this has kept me focused, passionate and on my toes.
I do admit that an artist must find their voice or style, but that this might end up being voices or styles, plural. Maybe this should be the standard, or at very least more widely accepted. Most people in the business of art are convinced that this will not sell or be marketable, and that it will hinder the recognition factor for the potential buyer/collector. To that I say, let’s try to expand our minds a little bit people. Through trying my hand at all of these different genres, I still hear from people all of the time, that while searching the web and social media, that they can always tell my work immediately. So I guess a unifying style or voice can indeed bridge the gap of genre.
Having said all of this, I recently finished up a piece called “Convergence”. I was very proud of this piece, but once done and marketed, I found myself feeling a tad bit flat and uninspired. This happens from time to time in the artist’s world and I believe must be embraced and not feared. I don’t however let it dictate my life or work, as I am always excited and anxious to get back to painting. Therefore, I use this time to contemplate and meditate for a few days until the next idea hits me. Many times the idea comes in my sleep, or upon waking. Sometimes during or after a meditation. But this time it hit me while driving in my car and I am more than happy to introduce it and my new series:
When I got this idea, I became so excited that I wanted to turn the car around and get started right away. These Micro Paintings would not just be tiny/small works, but affordable, functional and highly unique paintings. I had the idea to start by finding unique and antique photo picture frames of all kinds. Instead of starting with a blank canvas or surface and creating something out of nothing, I would find these unique individual frames and let the painting idea develop to fit their own unique style! Essentially, I would work in reverse. These paintings would be affordable and multi-functional in that many of them could be hung on the wall and/or placed standing upright on a desk, counter or any flat surface in the house or office. As the idea grew on me by the second, I found myself suddenly refreshed and invigorated.
The next day I set out to antique stores, thrift shops, and found sellers of unique small frames on the internet. Before I knew it, I had already acquired 17 individual frames to get me started! I plan to create a minimum of four Micro Paintings per week until I feel like I have gotten it out of my system and feel satisfied that I have exhausted the possibilities of this concept. With so many unique, handcrafted frames out there I cannot envision stopping soon. I am so thrilled to be adapting and evolving and to be excited about a new series. This is what a painter lives for. And I believe when you see them, they will still fit in and be a nice addition to my “Voice”, style and body of work.
Here is a sample of the first four below. I hope you enjoy! If you like and feel like purchasing one or more, you can do so here:
I hope you enjoy and find some inspiring new ideas of your own. Keep creating and evolving!
The Problem Of The “Top Five”
Okay, so I have been hearing a lot these days that you are the average of the five people that you spend the most time with (your best friends essentially), which I will refer to from this point on as the “Top Five”. This can be problematic and even anxiety-inducing to many, especially those starting out with big dreams for their lives and humble beginnings.
Let’s take me for an example. I am an artist and want to, one day, be a very influential and well-regarded one at that. Does this mean that I should be spending most of my free time with Banksy, Shepard Fairey, Ai Weiwei, Takashi Murakami, and Mark Ryden? I would LOVE to, but this sadly is just not very realistic.
Or, let’s say you are working in a coffee shop and have dreams of one day becoming a multi-millionaire. You are currently going back to school to get your Masters Degree and are brainstorming the next big idea that will eventually get you there. That is wonderful and takes a lot of courage and initiative, but let’s face it you are most likely not currently hanging with Bill Gates, Elon Musk, Richard Branson, Chris Sacca, and Peter Thiel on the weekends.
Okay, so you get my point I think.
Is This Theory Shallow?
I tend to think that this theory of being the average of the five people you hang out with the most is somewhat shallow, or incomplete at the very least. Let me explain what I mean.
I don’t think people are this one-dimensional (or if they are, I probably wouldn’t want to be their friend). How many well-rounded, down-to-earth people set their sights on being a millionaire and then immediately set out to find the five most money hungry people in their city, succeed in solidifying a relationship somehow and then commence spending all of their free time together? What kind of interesting and influential artist, spends all of his free time living, breathing, eating, drinking, and shitting art with five other like-minded art obsessed clones?
Nobody I know.
My five closest people are an ex-musician turned businessman, a sports-loving family man currently going back to school, a spiritual military veteran, a music-teacher and composer, and a multi-media designer/artist. Their income levels vary, but not one of them is a self-made millionaire. Not one of them is a famous artist. Does this mean that I will achieve neither of these positions in my life? Not necessarily.
I realize and am grateful to say that I get very different things from each of these wonderful people in my life. They provide me with inspiration from different areas of the arts, spiritual and philosophical debates, business and practical advice, the enjoyment of sports, and a feeling of love and deep sharing just to name a few. Would I throw all of this away simply to hang out with only other like-minded and career obsessed painters?
Definitely not. These people in their unique ways, help to keep me grounded and multi-faceted in my life.
Could I however stand to add and cultivate a strong relationship with at least one famous artist, or mentor?
Absolutely. And I am working on it…
Or at least a starting point.
I think the thing that bothers me enough to write this blog is that first of all, I hear the “Top Five” theory at least three times per week. Secondly, it just does not seem realistic and more like a buzz phrase that does not offer any deeper insights and certainly not any solutions for the “common” person.
So I will say, yes, you should be attempting to develop relationships with top performers in your field, but this should not be your only goal, nor is it realistic one to fill your roster with.
Instead, cultivate or aspire to developing a relationship with one or two of these top performers and continue to hang out with three of four of the other top people already in your life that currently add value in another arena. This will add or maintain depth and diversity in your world. Plus, who wants to discard all of the people in their lives that they currently love being around? On the other hand, maybe one or two could go on the old chopping block. You know who they are, ha ha..
Perhaps the MOST IMPORTANT thing you can do RIGHT NOW however is to expose yourself to top performers and masters in your field of expertise in other forms of media or informational avenues, such as influential podcasts and blogs, books and audio books, documentaries, interviews in newspapers, trade papers, magazines, etc. Attend seminars and workshops. If you are an artist, go to museums, gallery openings, and visit artists’ studios. Find a way to foster the acquisition of skills and knowledge that might be currently unobtainable by a lack of possessing an All-Star “Top Five” at the present moment.
For me, I watch at least three documentaries per week (at least one being art-related, the others designated towards the expansion of my general knowledge base), I am always reading a book (classics and biographies are a personal favorite; art-related, spirituality and self-improvement a close second), I soak up at least 2 podcasts per day (The Tim Ferriss Show is a MUST, but I also enjoy the Art Of Charm and The Good Life Project, all of which bring out the best in my entrepreneurial and artistic spirit), I listen to at least one audio book per week (I highly recommend The Obstacle Is The Way by Ryan Holiday and How To Stop Worrying And Start Living by Dale Carnegie), I youtube talks by Eckhart Tolle and Tony Robbins regularly (for a shot of spiritual and business strategy adrenaline), and I constantly search the web for new ways to learn how to market and strategize in the business of the art world. This may seem like a lot, but it is enjoyable and keeps me laser-focused and highly driven.
Think of this as a current solution and/or substitution for the lack of a stellar “Top Five” in your world right now. It will more than get you by, and hopefully even get you a jump start on your competitors.
Or maybe this is just a something that annoys me. Well in that case, it feels good to get it out anyway. No, no. There must be millions like me out there that are perturbed each time they hear someone spout out this ubiquitously uttered “Top Five” theory.
To you I say that you are not alone and I hope this helps, even a little.
Here’s to creating your own Top Five peer group in your own world and mind, however you can.
My newest piece of artwork, “Picking Up The Pieces” was completed late last week.
This is an abstract, geometric painting that was produced on a vintage table-top. It is a sentimental piece for me in that this coffee table has been in my life for over a decade and has seen many different stages of my artwork and evolution. It has seen me make decisions that were stupid beyond belief, and it has also witnessed me grow as a human being. You can only imagine the stories it would tell…
It is also the second in a series of artworks along with “Deconstruction” and can also be sold as a series for anyone that is interested.
Both are pictured below in a living room setting.
Here is a selection of some new work that I have been doing in my studio.
The “LA vs NY II” issue of Artist Portfolio Magazine was released today!
My work was selected last year as one of only ten Los Angeles artists for the competition “LA vs. NY II”. You can now view my selection on pages 14 and 15 of the latest issue of Artist Portfolio Magazine! I feel extremely honored to have been selected as one of the ten Los Angeles artist and to be appearing in this issue. Take a look and share it with your friends or fellow art lovers.
You can view the issue here:
Enjoy! More to come..
My painting “Shattered” received 3rd place today in the Paintings Category for the competition “All Abstract” for Contemporary Art Gallery Online!! Thanks to the judges and those who voted for my work!
Check it out here:
Life is good! After a hiatus from blogging, I am BACK and have much to share in the coming blogs! Stay tuned and hope you check out my work in this competition!