Still Life and Death
I’ve always loved still life paintings. They manage to capture a mood just with objects on a table. I wanted to do my own take on a more gothic style of still life and paint a few objects I’ve collected and have sitting around my house! This painting was great fun to do. It’s acrylic on canvas. I forced myself to pay attention to the details right down to the very smallest – the sheen on the wax of the candles, the reflection of light on the plastic skull, the white pumpkin that I bought from the farmer’s market. Painting all the folds in the background cloth was very meditative! I unveiled this in a few gallery shows, most notably a solo show at SCATV.
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Traveling and experiencing new places is one of the most important things to me. Wanderlust often strikes, and before I know it, I find myself in a new location, near or far. I spent a month in Barcelona in 2014, and I fell in love with the city as soon as I arrived. The long narrow streets twisted and winded down around apartment buildings and every little shop imaginable. I took hundreds of pictures while in Barcelona, Spain, and I decided to paint this one out of many since it captured the experience of being there so well.
This painting is completely Barcelona in November: all buildings on either side, people coming and going, and a little rain to reflect lighting. I painted this acrylic on canvas for several months. The color palette is intentionally limited to create a mood within the piece and capture the environment when I took this picture. After completing this painting, I gave it as a gift to my mom and its currently hanging in her house; a little touch of Spain she can look at whenever she wants.
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I started using a physical planner over the last year, and it's been fantastic! I still use a calendar app, but it isn’t the same as having a notebook in front of you. It’s part of the entire experience: the weight of the notebook, pressing the sides as you open it, the paper’s smoothness, and the smell of the paper. Sensory experiences aside, I’ve seen a lot of different planner sticker sets, and I decided to make some myself. Before I made the sticker sets, I took inspiration from metal, goth, and witchcraft subcultures. I researched sticker designs and occult subjects, then I sketched and refined the designs in Adobe Sketch and Photoshop.
After the research, designs, and refinements had been finished, there was the final step: printing. It’s easier in theory than practice, designs look different on a screen and when physically printed. I had to go through an iterative process to get the planner stickers just right; they need the right quality of print, color contrast, and drying process. Additionally, I printed the sticker sets on white matte and transparencies to allow for different applications. These stickers became the inspiration for a few other sets.
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