Darts, 2011, acrylic & gorilla glue on wood, 10" diameter
What are you working on in your studio right now?
Currently I am working on a whole bunch of small scale acrylic paintings and a newly started grouping of crayon based works on paper.
Can you describe your working routine?
I don’t have a set working time of day, but I like to get things done most days. I’m kind of a compulsive image maker. When I go to the studio I look at what’s in progress and decide which painting I want to work on. Then I’ll put on some music or the radio and get to work. When I complete a work, or get tired of working on one piece, I move on to another.
Can you describe your studio space and how, if at all, that affects your work?
My studio space is in the basement of my house. It is very convenient for the commute, and when I want a sandwich. I live in Ithaca, New York. The studio space is exposed concrete and open beams. There are two small windows that let in almost no natural light. I work under exposed Gustonesque light bulbs. There are a series of metal tangs that I can hang little paintings on. This allows me to see a number of recently completed or in progress works all at once. I generally paint in my lap, on the floor, or on a fold out work table, while sitting in a chair. I generally have about two dozen works on the go. The studio is conducive to small scale works, but I can make some medium scale works if I feel like it. I don’t have any ventilation, so working in oil would be a no no, but I prefer acrylic anyhow.
Banger, 2010, acrylic & gorilla glue on canvas, 10 x 8"
Sarge, 2010, acrylic & gorilla glue on canvas, 10 x 8"
Tell me about your process, where things begin, how they evolve etc.
I usually start with a preconceived icon, often from a found image or small thumbnail sketch. I keep a lot of little sketchbooks and notepads. From there, I begin working with materials. I try to limit my ‘mistakes’, but when something really goes off the rails it often provides a new point of departure to become a new piece I hadn’t thought of.
What are you having the most trouble resolving?
I have several little paintings I am not quite sure how to resolve right now. Either I’ll paint things out to start somewhat anew, or else just let them sit on the wall, simmering, and think about them.
Do you experiment with different materials a lot or do you prefer to work within certain parameters?
I like to experiment with different materials. Although primarily based in acrylic, my works also incorporate a number of unconventional materials. I don’t have an art store in my city, so I try to make good use of hardware store finds. The materials also allow a further link to the subject matter. These include: spray foam insulation, Canadian pennies, foam insulation board, burlap, plastic, Gorilla Glue, spray paint, newspaper and wood.
Bubblin´ crude, 2011, acrylic & gorilla glue on canvas, 10 x 8"
What does the future hold for this work?
Working small and quickly allows me to explore ideas rapidly and develop bodies of work that flow into one another. I am looking forward to broadening my base of source imagery and finding new collage materials to incorporate into my work. I am also working on some slightly larger pieces, moving up from a 8x10” standard scale to 16x20”
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Thanks so much for including me on your blog. There are lot of great Canadian artists working right now who often are quite unknown outside of Canada. Among many others (check out the links section on my website), I’d like to mention Eliza Griffiths, Eric Simon and my buddy Vitaly Medvedovksy.