What was your awakening as an artist? When did you feel like you were meant to create?
If there was a time before I was an artist, I don’t remember it. My mother is an artist, though I don’t know if she’d call herself that, and my father, too, has a stubborn dedication to his obsessions. On a genetic level, they seem to have passed onto me an innate creative permission. Like everyone else, I seek attention after I make something, but I’ve never needed permission to make that thing in the first place.
When you need to find your creativity, how do you evoke it? Do you people-watch? Eavesdrop on conversations? What’s your bread and butter?
Again, the creativity is always there. What I need to find every day is the best way for my hands to keep up with my mind. I do eavesdrop. I do people-watch. But the way I can always get myself started is to ask what I want to see myself make. It’s about more than making what I want to see in the world. As a gay man, I grew up seeing myself in code in other people’s art. I want to see myself in my own art.
You’re originally from Winchester, Kentucky, but now live in Kansas City, Missouri. What are the vibes in Missouri versus Kentucky?
I feel like I’m the worst person to answer this question because I’m at a point in my life where I recognize the power of carrying your own vibes with you so that home isn’t tethered to any one place. As far as external forces, the weather is similar, the allergens are identical, and in both places, I’m never far from the river. So it comes down to the people. Kansas City is my way of living in a place a lot like my hometown but larger and with completely different people.
What’s the coolest side project/commission you’ve done?
Back when I was doing a lot of textile work, I knitted these pillows with plush penises on top of them, and they ended up in an issue of Playgirl.
What’s the best/strangest/weirdest comment you’ve received in regard to your work?
Someone sent me a message last year asking if a guy in one of my drawings was inspired by a bitchy ex-lover. Well, thanks a lot stranger, but it was a self-portrait.
A lot of your work is portrait-based. If you could do a portrait of anyone, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
Oh, I don’t know. Nothing’s stopping me from doing a portrait of anyone I want right now, but for the sake of the question, I’ll say a young Marlon Brando.
Care to tell (b)OINK and its readers a secret no one knows about you? C’mon, let the little piggy out.
I believe in magic.