Having grown up around the natural beauty of Santa Barbara, and also in a community where technology and computers were so revered (at least in my direct sphere), the focus of my art seems to have fallen somewhere in the middle of these two extremes, exploring that place where nature and technology meet, celebrating that juncture while also critiquing it and bringing into question the necessity and purpose of many of man's inventions.
My father, an early pioneer of the computer graphics industry, moved our family from LA to Santa Barbara in the early 80's to start Wavefront Technologies. I remember watching his colleagues animate swooping journeys through the universe and ancient Mayan cities. They were like artist magicians at the helm of an avant-garde ship navigating uncharted waters. I was in awe of these rock star artists, I wanted to be them, I wanted to create images that also engendered feelings of awe and wonder.
I was lucky to have parents that understood and encouraged my drive to create art. They provided me with a steady flow of sketch books, my dad would give me long drawing lessons in two-point perspective at the kitchen table, we built a dark room in the garage, went on photo shoots, and critiqued one another's sketch books. My childhood was filled with these memories of creative bonding, there was a mutual understanding that creating art was one of the most important things you could do.
In high school, I supplemented my art classes with photography classes at Brooks Institute and programs at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art. I also participated in mentorships with local Santa Barbara artists Marie Schoeff and Rafael Perea de la Cabada who pushed my art to the next level, both on a technical and conceptual level.
In lieu of art school, I pursued a liberal arts education at UC Berkeley taking classes in astronomy, philosophy, English, animation, art history, ethnographic filmmaking, and eventually majoring in anthropology – all of which have become strong influences on my work. When struggling with the decision of whether to go to art school or whether to get a "normal education", I got some wonderful advice from two art teachers. They said, " You can always go back and get a master's in art. Go get your liberal arts education because the better your ideas are, the better your art will be." That was such mind-blowing advice. Art is about ideas. So, get good at ideas!
I currently live and work in Oakland, California working in a variety of mediums ranging from woven photographs to other experimental applications of photography, and painting. My day job is being the co-owner of Muffin Revolution, a Paleo muffin company in Berkeley. You can find our muffins at most Northern California Whole Foods, as well as many other Bay Area grocery stores and cafes. While the business takes up almost all of my time, I still try to carve out spare minutes or hours to create something, anything.