Who are you, and what do you do?
Here’s a little introduction about me: I take cold showers in the morning, every morning. It scares the shit out of me, but I do it because the feeling after these showers engulfs any amount of fear going into them. This had all started when I picked up this book called “The Flinch” by Julien Smith. After a number of years I have developed this instinct to identify my fears, be aware of them, and do them anyway. Little that I know at the time how extremely fun life can be when operating this way. Since then, I had quit my job in the architecture realm, clawed my way into the entertainment industry as an illustrator and moved across the country.
What do I do? Well, I draw and paint a lot. Its a part of me. Like any relationship, my bond with my work is one emotional roller coaster that cycles round and round. In no particular order, I can experience joy, excitement, struggle, misery, anxiousness, empathy… the list goes on. There was a time when I would try to get rid of these emotions when they occurred, especially the uncomfortable ones. However at some point in my life I stopped running. I learned to embrace them, to venture deep into them, and to use them as motivation to produce. In the end, the work comes out better in my estimation, and I find that I’m able to grow with each piece. Looking forward, I plan to venture deep into my consciousness to places I dare not travel, and come back to tell the tale the best way that I can.
What forms of media have influenced you the most?
Music, non-fiction books and podcasts have a big influence on my creativity and development.
For music, I’m big on Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, and Tom Waits. a lot of their lyrics evoke emotions that resonate with whatever state I may be in at the time, and their songs change every time I go through new experiences or have epiphanies.
As far as books goes, I read a lot of auto bios and creativity developing books. To name a few: Steven Pressfield’s “The War of Art”, Twyla Tharpe’s “The Creative Habit”, R. M. Rike ‘s “Letters to a Young Poet”, Seneca’s “Letters from a Stoic”, and the autobiographies of Richard Branson, Steve Jobs, and Richard Simmons. I am also big on the teachings of Terrence Mckenna, Alan Watts, and Timothy Leary.
I would say that podcasts have the biggest influence at this point in my life. Mostly because they introduce me to new books, music, documentaries, etc… Here is a list of the ones i listen to: The Joe Rogan Experience stand at the top, Aubrey Marcus’ Warrior Poet podcast, Mark Sisson’s Primal Blueprint podcast, Amber Lyon’s Reset.me podcast, The Duncan Trussell Family Hour, The Tim Ferris Show, and London Real
What hardware / software do you use?
I use Photoshop and Autodesk Sketchbook. I have two Wacom Cintiqs, one for my station and the other for traveling. I also use a projector for large scale traditional artwork.
What would be your dream creative setup?
I am most creative and productive in the winter. Living in NYC really helps with that. Its dark, its cold, its quite lonesome, and yet its perfect. This sounds quite morbid I know, but when that flow is going I’m like a kid in a candy store. In contrast, springtime is quite difficult because its so damn nice and the city is erupting with happiness and parties. It’s rare for me to produce (good work at least) with nice weather.