I have a voracious appetite for media and pop culture, and I have always looked for connections between events in life and the creations that flow from and through them. For myself and many of the creative people I surround myself with, pop culture is a supplementary means of communication and a collection of shared experiences. This environment inspires me to explore the underlying structure of how people use creative expression to communicate with each other.
My first foray into examining art as communication was practicing my ability to use purely visual language to express ideas and tell stories through illustration. This work was mostly humorous references to pop culture or the repurposing of elements of pop culture to create visual metaphors. As I developed my illustration abilities and refined my artistic process, I learned more about how others interpreted details of my work and why – how the shared figurative language of experience informs the artist’s visual conversation with the viewer.
As with many illustrators, photography was always an important tool for my process. As I experimented with photography and became more proficient, I used it to explore how others perceive visual elements that they assume to be real. Photographic illusions allow me to create visual metaphors that draw attention to important elements of our lives that might otherwise go unnoticed. For example, this process allows me to examine how we perceive and learn about each other while navigating the many layers of our individual personalities and physical appearances.
Using the illusion of depth in photography led me to create sculptural pieces that incorporate elements of photography and illustration. This opened up new avenues for challenging perception and creating more interactive pieces. Since the viewer can have many different experiences with a three dimensional sculpture by viewing it from different angles, I used the added interactivity of changing positions to indicate different meanings depending on the position of the viewer. The act of moving provides new information, challenges expectations, and prompts reinterpretation, creating a conversation that is more dynamic than that with two dimensional art.
Illustration, photography, and sculpture are the tools I use most frequently, but my priority is exploring fundamentals of communication with art, and to that end I am always learning new skills.