P.E.P.P.E.R. Updates ~ 5/22/14 ~



















Here are some updates on my experimental photo blog, where I have posted some recent successes with an ever-developing photo technique that involves impulsive light-writing and color-inverting the results so as to keep the negative image. All of the shots you see above are the "negatives," in the sense that the colors have been inverted: dark colors are light, warm colors are cool, blue is orange, red is green, and so forth. Over the last few months, I really feel this process has started to reach first signs of maturity, as I came across quite a crop of interesting, exciting images. Most of them are non-representational or non-pictorial in the sense that they depict nothing beyond the color, tone, shape, and line that one sees plainly within each composition. This does not, however, mean that they convey nothing besides those formal details. Rather, having less specificity, in terms of their referent, allows the pictures to convey a rather wide range of thoughts and feelings.

For a fuller grasp on what I'm trying to do with this images, check out my artist statement from the photo blog (which is lovingly dubbed "Purely Experimental Photography Produces Exciting Results," or "P.E.P.P.E.R." for short):

Recently, my own photography has consisted more and more of photo-experiments that seek to pull back the veil on a surprising and profound reality. Although I point my camera at the "mundane" details and "meaningless" twitches of life, the photos reveal just the opposite. This occurs through a creative mode of total experimentation. I combine seemingly random photo techniques with exposure to obscure or mundane subject matters. But when all is finished, a surprise emerges. The mundane, micro, and meaningless are revealed to be beautiful, grand, and purposeful. Nothing is meaningless. And the veil has been removed.

Illustrators' Holiday Show and Art Sale Tonight! ~12/14/13~



The Holiday season is upon is, which in part means that tonight you have the chance to see and acquire some wonderful artworks by illustrators who call Colorado home.  Alongside numerous works by fellow Colorado artists, the above two paintings will show and be on sale tonight at The Art Station in Arvada, CO, in the Colorado Alliance of Illustrators Fourth Annual Holiday Show.  The event lasts from 1pm to 7pm and will feature not only compelling artwork but Winter-appropriate warm drinks.  I hope to see you there! 

If you missed the show last week... ~10/11/13~


Salutations!  If you missed my art show last week, here's a little video I shot on a friend's phone such that you can get a glimpse at how the pieces were arranged and which ones were shown.  Throughout the video, I read one of the artist statements that I had displayed that night (see below).  It truly was a great time.  Many, many thanks to the amazing people at City Church for offering their gallery space as an opportunity for artists to show and thus get involved with one of the hottest First Friday art walks in the country!  

Hope all's well, and take care.  And here's a look at my artist statement from the show:


Works on Paper and Canvas

            My watercolor illustrations on paper combine realistic scenery with imaginative color and fictional stories.  I find that the best fiction offers not an escape from reality but an unrehearsed confrontation with it.  So, in hopes of drawing the viewer’s attention back to how brilliant life can actually be, my illustrations seek to blend the details of reality with the colors and surprise of imagination.  Hence, the images represent no escape into a pretend world.  Rather, I’m pointing to a real brilliance that already surrounds us, if only we’d look for it.

            My canvases arose from the experience of taking and teaching fine art classes.  They stand as an encouragement that students can, with time, become teachers.  More so, however, they stand as a reminder that the true teacher must always remain a student at heart.  The best teachers I’ve ever had are the ones that are open to learning from their students, the ones that see the good in their students’ work, even when no one else does.  Without such teachers in my life, I would never have become the artist I am today.

            My own journey as an artist started when I was very young.  Since I could first hold a pencil, I’ve enjoyed drawing people.  I have since expanded my repertoire to include a few background details, though the human being remains the most beautiful and captivating subject to me.  Before I went to art school, I couldn’t stand watercolor and using color in general intimidated me.  In college, however, I gradually discovered that watercolor was a perfect match for my drawing style, that it would bring my characters to life.  I also do other types of artwork, including digital illustration, fine art photography, music, and graphic design.

Works on Paper and Canvas: First Friday Art Show This Weekend ~10/2/13~





I've got another art show coming up!  This time I'll be showing somewhere around 20 pieces, works on paper and canvas, new and old.  Again, the show will take place in Denver's Santa Fe Art District along the First Friday Art Walk.  See these paintings and many more at the FOUND gallery -- that's 800 W 8th Avenue, Suite 112, Denver CO, 80204.  The show lasts from 6pm to 9pm this Friday, come rain or shine (or even come snow, I hope, since we have a rather unexpected snow storm forecast for that night!).  And the gallery offers some great food and beverages to complement the excellent art-viewing experience.  Come hang out, support local artists, enjoy some good conversation and refreshments.  See you there!

Among the images pictured above, the top two are rather new and have never been made public until now!  They're part of the MMQ series I've been working on, that is, the illustrated collection of short stories called Mary Mary Quite: On Training Up a Child and Other Mind-altering Substances, by Mary Huckstep.  Stay tuned for more updates on the book, which we're hoping to release in ebook form by mid-to-late December.  

Hope to see you at the show!  Bye for now and take care.

Come See These Paintings, Live and In Person! Santa Fe Art District! ~9/4/13~


Hello, hello.  Just wanted to let you know that I'll have some artwork showing in the Santa Fe Art District in Denver this weekend.  Every month they do a huge First Friday Art Walk -- it's widely regarding as some of the best free fun to be had in this "creative capital of the West".  I'll be showing a few of my old favorites, some rather large paintings that I finished back in 2008.  The paintings pictured above will be displayed at an art show called FOUND, at 800 W 8th Avenue, Suite 112, Denver CO, 80204.  The event lasts from 6pm to 9pm and will feature some great food and beverages.  Come hang out, support local artists, enjoy some good conversation and refreshments.  See you there!

An Interplanetary Farewell to The Stormcellars! ~8/13/12~


Today is the farewell show of a terrific band whom I've had the privilege of getting to know a little bit over the last year-ish.  Do check out the bandcamp page of The Stormcellars -- their music has been quite a treat and it will be sad to see them go.  Tonight, I'll be cheering my lungs out, clapping my hands flat, and singing my voice happy at The Stormcellars' farewell show.  The above poster, originally designed as a sort of creative barter with the hopes of free admission into all future Stormcellars gigs, has morphed into more of a good-bye gift and "thank you" for all the wonderful tunes.  

"The Moon and the Manticore" is, I believe, not exactly the act that they'll be performing tonight -- rather, it is a telescopically ambitious folk-rock musical theatre production that the band's lead singer has been envisioning for quite some time.  Hopefully, in the future we can all see this prospective masterpiece take the nation coast-to-coast, even traverse the worldwide folk-rock musical theatre scene.  Until then, I'm afraid, the above poster may remain somewhat of an elusive teaser...  So be it!  May it tantalize your creative taste buds with wonder!  And, to our great pleasure, may this folk-musical epic be completed long before the year 3013.  For the moment, however, I must go get some rest.  Launch is in 0400 hours.   Bye for now, good night, and good flight!

Poem Illustrations: "City" ~8/8/13~




Here are the final three from an eleven-poem series that I recently illustrated for a friend of mine, musician and poet Brian Stark.  From top to bottom, their names are "Entering the Red Line at Chicago," "Picnic Table," and "Walking Home in the Rain" -- click these links if you'd like to see the illustrations in their original contexts, displayed on Brian's poetry blog along with the poems they illustrate.  

This last chunk of poetry follows the theme of "City," according to the thematic rhythm of "Nature," "King," and "City."  The themes, of course, truly flourish when one reads through the illustrated poems on Brian's blog, something that I would highly encourage.  Of all eleven poems, I can't really pick a favorite.  I will say though that four of the poems struck me most strongly.  These were "Walking Home in the Rain," "Entering the Red Line at Chicago," "Snowfall," and "A Tree is Born."  The words, the imagery, and the movement are so beautiful in these poems -- they really impacted me.  

I hope you've enjoyed these illustrations and the poems that inspired them!  Soon, I'll put up a little post on what my process looks like for this new illustration style.  It's something I had been thinking about since roughly 2007, something that only now have I gotten the chance to actualize.  It involves digitally inverting the color of my images.  I know, isn't that outrageous!?  I thought the same thing!  *Pensive sigh*.  Anyways, can't wait to share.  Till then, stay wonderful, (i.e. full of wonder) and have an awesome weekend.