Monday, 12 March 2012

Art

I've been drawing for as long as I can remember, painting for about 25 years and a professional graphic designer for over 15 years. Because of my artistic bent, I've been called artsy fartsy, and gay more times than I can count. The irony, is that most of the people who called me those names were latent homosexuals-- jocks  trying to overcompensate. Thou protest to loudly, is usually the case. In Canada, I would usually just take the ribbing and go home and fuck my girlfriend. I've had girlfriends asked by other men why they were dating me since I was so obviously a fag. I've been hit on by more than my fair share of actually gay men. In Korea, the home of the metro-sexual Asian man (cool purse, dude), I just usually just punch the fucker out. All because I'm a little more sensitive than the average guy (father-son/daughter scenes in movies make me bawl like a little girl), and I like to draw pretty pictures.

Being artistic in high school isn't a lot of fun. I hung out with the "freaks" (now we call them 'goths'), skinheads, mods and punk-rockers. The outsiders. It provided me with a certain level of protection from the other groups at school. When you have a couple of big female skinheads beating the crap out of preps, rockers and jocks because they looked at you funny, people tend to leave you alone. The outsiders accepted my artist streak since many of them were musicians, or stoners or both, usually with a large appreciation for tattoos. Being able to draw tattoos in a fringe group like this is very beneficial. I still got called a fag by some people in this group, but the irony is that a couple of them came out of the closet after trying to hit on me. It was around this time I started painting.  In comparison to my latest work, it was primitive. I had no idea what I was doing, so I studied. I experimented. I developed a style of my own. Now, if you have seen any of my paintings, there is no doubt who did it.

While I was doing secondary education, I learned a lot more. I painted a huge number of paintings and had my first show. I even sold a couple. Over the years, all those paintings have disappeared. Someone still haves them, but I have no idea who or where. There are a couple of lost years in there somewhere. I had a daughter. I tried to do the right thing, and failed miserably. I couldn't hack having a 9-5 job, but I gained new skills as a graphic designer and I started to get more and more freelance work in that field. I also discovered I was really good with computers. I naturally knew how they worked and how to use them, so I would supplement my income fixing them.

This new found lifestyle of pretty much doing whatever I want whenever I wanted to do it led me down a very destructive path. I had money and a lot of free time. This led to drugs, each harder than the last and me turning into a deadbeat dad. I maintained a relationship with my daughter, but I was useless financially and I was sporadic with my visits. I met a girl and we mutually went further down the spiral. I went to Africa, Spain and Germany with this girl, found myself with out her in a foreign country and used the Canadian consulate to borrow money to get home. After a couple of months living with my dad, I got a job in Korea. The entire time, I continued to do freelance graphic jobs and even spent a stint writing articles about certain products used by search engines to improve rankings.

Korea, the first time, was a clusterfuck. I lasted 3 months before I did a runner. I had to live in the same house as my director and I had just discovered an evil liquor called soju. On one hand, I always had money, cigarettes and booze, as well as being drug-free, on the other hand, I was drunk all the time and could barely function, so I went back to Canada.

I lasted three more months there before I realized, that even drunk, it was better to have money, smokes and booze than no money, no smokes and no booze and I got another job in Korea. This trip hasn't ended yet.

During these lost years, I stopped drawing and painting almost completely. About 3 years ago I started again. My output isn't as much, but I think the quality is a bit better. And even in this economy, they sell a lot better, too

I get a lot of questions about my art. What does it mean? What are you trying to say? Why did you paint that? So, here it is: It doesn't mean anything. I'm not trying to give any message. I painted it because I thought it looked cool. I draw a lot of individual pencil drawing. Sometimes I screw around with photographs. Sometimes I take all those different elements and I combine them into one painting. The result usually looks cool. That's how I do it. I've spent a lot of years practicing, and studying composition and colour theory. Certain things come naturally, like a musician playing scales or the blues, but for the most part I'm just making it up as I go along-- much the same as I live life.