“My primary medium would be mixed media. I find myself working with layers: collage, acrylic paint, and even marker. I kind of work in two different worlds: mixed media pieces that maybe have a little paint applied to them (collage and acrylics), and illustrations, sort of one-offs, relatively small and intricate drawings with pen and ink. Those are the two mediums I work with most often.
Stylewise, my work is whimsical and somewhat abstract. When I’m drawing, humor is a big part of the work. I’m drawing things that pop out of my mind and are often viewed as a bit tongue-in-cheek. If you look at the titles of my drawings, I try to spend quality time thinking about what the title might be, and usually, it’s humorous. While my style is whimsical, there is sometimes a dark edge to it. Dreams are a theme I often visit.
I’ve been working seriously as an artist for a long time, but the murder of George Floyd sent me in a new direction, wanting to do more figurative portraiture work. The piece I did of George Floyd had deep meaning, and many pieces do, but that one was live. I incorporated a lot of the other African Americans killed at the hands of police in that piece. I felt George Floyd was the head of that wound. Creating something that paid homage to him and the victims of the violence felt necessary at the time. [My wife] Carrie Lee also suggested that it might be a good time to do something that has some activism built into it. So I did. It was eerie but also comforting to sit with this human being and look at their face for so long. I felt connected to the person. Recently, that piece is shaping some of my trajectories for future work.
Goshen is a place where you can plant seeds and see them grow. There are other places, other communities, where it’s a lot more challenging to do that. Goshen is a place where you can be seen and appreciated. Many other people are being creative, so it’s inspiring and visible. Everything from the care and attention put into city planning, events, restaurants, and places where people gather are important to the fabric of the community and the creativity found in Goshen. All those factors make Goshen a place where the arts can thrive and continue to grow and flourish. Covid-19 put a hold on it, but I think people found creative ways to survive and stay alive. Businesses found ways to get through it, and I think that they’ll come out stronger on the other side of it for that. It’s an exciting time to be coming out of a dark tunnel.”