the last #selfie was very personal piece. it was a self portrait of the darkest kind, yet was also a happy accident. i had been tossing around concepts for a new series and kept coming back to the idea of depicting firing squads or executions. there is something about a red blindfold and cigarette that is both sinister and sexy at the same time. the happy accident was using myself as the first to be portrayed in such a grim manner. i don't particularly enjoy being photographed and rarely take selfies, so i thought i would use one my own images as the first to be "executed". the initial intent was to simply mock my own photo. however, as i sketched and the image took shape, the tragic irony of executing myself for the sake of art, was impossible to ignore. the end result was a reflective and striking piece. the wood was salvaged from an old armoire. i kept the original shape, feeling the disproportions fit well with the overall tone of the subject matter. i painted my self portrait in a simple matte black and bright red enamel. i brushed a few layers of tinted wood stain in the background for a little depth and added dictionary paper to the reverse side. soon after i finished the painting, i exhibited it Long Beach. i never intended to actually sell the piece, but a determined buyer was able to change my mind. hey, a girl's gotta eat!
my manifesto is less of a declaration of my personal views and more of a record of my process as an artist. i decided to start with one of my favorite pieces, gunmonkey in red. i love this piece for many reasons, the most important being the sale. the sale of this specific gunmonkey gave me the confidence to pursue art full time. no looking back, no more fall back plan, no backup (pun). the wood "panels" are doors from an antique armoire i salvaged, complete with the original brass hardware. i sanded and prepped the recessed portions, then painted on a bright red enamel. the gunmonkey himself was painted with standard black acrylic. i finished him off with a protective layer of a matte lacquer. the piece was quite large, 5' tall and roughly 4' wide, depending on how close the doors were set together. the lacquer was still wet when i put my feelers out for a potential buyer. i sent out a few texts and included a picture of my latest work ... he was sold in minutes. the buyer was a collector aquaintence of a friend and with one, very brief conversation, he agreed to my asking price and i set a delivery date. unknowingly, this collector set in motion my full time career. before this piece i was just a gunmonkey who liked to paint. after the sale, i was professional painter who just liked to play with guns.