Before my friend Xiang moved to Austin, we got together to collaborate on some art projects that I’ll be rolling out in the next few months. One day when we got together she asked me if I could draw a dream for her, so I drew a vivid and unusual dream upside down so she could see what I was telling her. On one of her last nights in town I did the show and tell thing for a couple dreams while Xiang filmed it. I want to mess around with effects and other stuff on these videos, but until I do here is one of the unedited videos for your amusement.
It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything here. My access to computers is limited without one of my own. The chalkboard work continues, along with other projects I’m quieter about, but now I am trying to do fast chalkboard portraits at Glasbox events in El Paso, Texas.
If you can’t make it to an event at Glasbox, contact me and schedule an appointment for a portrait that fits your schedule.
I did this comic in 2012 as a result of Occupy Wall Street inspiring me to take on problems in the world around me. This was a practice run for doing a non fiction graphic novel about people who use Christianity to get what they want in business and politics. The project turned out to be overly ambitious for me with the limited resources I possess and have access to, so it is on the back burner waiting for me to get my shit together. One unfortunate reality I learned when dabbling in activism is that it is difficult to help others when I can’t even help myself.
This is the most recent painting I have done (well, it was 98% completed), which is unfortunate because I did this in 2010. I majored in painting at UTEP and love the medium, but a few years ago I lost my entire life’s work, all records related to that (like my portfolio), and all of my art supplies. My art supplies were purchased using student loans and since I lost everything after leaving college it has been near impossible to replace it all. I have not been able to paint for several years and the time that passes since doing this painting just adds more weight to the crushing depression I feel. Hopefully I will be able to paint again someday!
I did show this painting in 2 art shows: “The Punch and Pie Art Show” at a warehouse I was trying to turn into an arts space of some sort, and a week or two later in a Valentine’s Day show at “The Percolator”, an art filled coffee shop in downtown El Paso (which is now closed). The painting was taken down at the request of offended customers the day after the show. I took it as a compliment that I could get some kind of reaction with my art.
Here is one picture I have of this painting hanging at the Punch and Pie Art show:
I had two other paintings in this series which were both about 75% complete and all I have now are the digital sketches/studies I created before starting the actual paintings. The first one was about 4’6” x 7’ and the other roughly 6’ x 3’ (I can’t remember the exact dimensions and lost the records of that information).
Here is the digital study for the second painting in this series which I guess would have been called “Beauty of Pleasure II” I never did have an in progress photo of it, but it was looking pretty great and was my favorite in the series. It was around 7’6″ x 4’6″ I think.
Before leaving El Paso I had the model for one last session and was working on a third painting in the series. Here is the sketch for “Beauty of Pleasure III”
I did manage to find one photograph of this painting while it was being worked on in El Paso. It was about the same size as “Beauty of Pleasure I” at 6′ x 3′. You can see it in the background behind a bad picture of me.
Where are the paintings now? I did recover one box of rolled up canvases from Greyhound, the company that drove off with my life’s work. These paintings were in that box and I took them with me to Brooklyn, NY, but was unable to work on them there (another story for another time). There is a possibility they are in my ex girlfriend’s dad’s storage unit, but I am not holding my breath waiting for them.
What did I learn from the experience of losing everything? Finish work faster, document everything, and keep backups in multiple places. Also, I need to get my shit together already…
One thing which appeals to me about being an artist is the variety of things a person can do with artistic skills. Just knowing how to draw well has opened doors for me to: paint, tattoo, airbrush, design, sculpt, animate, make comics and do several other things over the years. A few months ago I decided to add “chalk artist” to the list of things I can do to earn “right to life vouchers”, aka. “money.”
My “go-to” hustle of portrait drawing has not paid off well since moving to Austin 2 weeks ago, so last week I printed business cards and a chalk art portfolio then walked along 6th st. in Austin asking managers at every business with a chalkboard if they might need my services. One business took me up on that, Shakespeare’s Pub, so on the Sunday morning of July 26, 2015, I showed up at 9AM and knocked this board out in just under 5 hours.
During the year I spent back in El Paso, TX from March 2014 until July 2015 I drew several of the local bands as they were performing live. These drawings were executed in 20 to 40+ minutes depending on how long their set was, plus sometimes a few minutes afterward to fill in larger black areas with pen. Most of these were done before November 2014 and were exhibited in an art show I threw called “Bands of El Paso” at a bar called “Monarch” on Rio Grande. The show was relatively successful for an art show at a bar in El Paso on a cold night and I estimate around 200 or more people showed up throughout the night.
I will attempt to post these drawings sequentially according to the dates they were executed. There are several more band drawings that are not in this post because I lost the files of the scanned images, so if any of the musicians I drew are wondering why I did not post your band, that is the reason and I apologize.
All the drawings are pen on paper, 8.5 in. x 5.5 in.
These guys had no set name at this time but were considering “Tiamat”
This painting was done sometime during the summer of 2005 while I was living at my friend Daniel’s apartment. He shaved off the front of his head in a style I had only seen in martial arts movies called the “chonmage”, but he didn’t have the long hair required for a long ponytail. I believe he was playing a Sega Dreamcast game system while I painted him in 2 sessions for this quick painting. For many years I did not think I had a good quality photograph of this painting until I found it recently on a CD of old art files. When I left El Paso in 2010 this painting was given to my friend Claudia who in turn gave it to our friend Griselda (the poet Viva Flores) who proudly owns it to this day. I am unsure of the size (I estimate 24″ x 18″), oil on masonite.