Tuesday, November 11, 2008

2008 Selected Photographs

"The Whole World"
Digital C-Print
36" x 36"

"Waking at Noon"
Digital C-Print
13" x 18"

2007 Selected Oil Paintings

"The War At Home"
Oil on Canvas
36" x 48"

"Until The Woodworms Carry Us Away"
Oil on Canvas
48" x 48"

2008 Seleted Watercolors

"Secrets of the Underage"
Watercolor on Paper
13" x 24"

"Alcoholic Self Portrait"
Watercolor on Paper
18" x 22"

Monday, November 10, 2008

2007 - 2008 Drunk Photos

2008 Group Show "Recollection Collection" #1

"Presents #1" Diptych
Watercolor on Paper
13" x 12" ea.

"Presents #2" Diptych
Watercolor on Paper
9" x 13" ea.

"Presents #3" Diptych
Watercolor on Paper
13" x 13"

2008 Group Show "Recollection Collection" #2

"Free Alcohol" Installation
Keg Beer, 1000 16oz. cups
5' x 3' x 4'

"Role Model #3"
Ink and Beer on Paper
36" x 60"

"Role Model #2"
Ink and Beer on Paper
36" x 60"

"Drunk Soon to be Pregnant" #1 0f 10
Watercolor on Paper
3" x 5"

"Drunk Soon to be Pregnant" #8 of 10
Watercolor on Paper
3" x 5"

Tuesday, June 10, 2008


i am depressed. lonely. scared. all the sudden i dont feel so great. my art sucks because i havent made anything. my writing sucks because i have written anything. i dont even want to go out side in the daylight. i hang out in my room in the dark, with a blanket over my window. not because i want to, i just do. i want to be in the dark, complete darkness like swimming in ink. that kind of dark. i want the only color i see to come forth when i touch my eyelids, and then explosions of red and yellow and white that quickly turn to blue and green and blackness again. fireworks on summer nights on a blanket on the grass.

i believe all of this has come out of my not working. the ideas i come up with seem good at the time but then i put too much thought into them and decide that they are crap. i guess this is part of the process. its like being constipated because i cant give a shit. i hate being constipated. contipation of the mind, body and mouth. the shit is inside me but i cant expell it. i need a creative laxative. CREAT-O-LAX. where do you buy it? hope its not expensive.

Friday, May 2, 2008


writing; an early form of blogging

Saturday, April 26, 2008


My father has been pushing me more and more, everyday everyday, to join the marines. my dad was a marine. he was a shitty dad but a great marine. As bad a father as he was, i still look up to him. i've got no one else, he's my dad. my dad can walk on water. every little kid thinks his dad rules the world. my dad did. he was the angel gabriel. the arch angel gabriel sounded his horn and death came like a thief in the night. my dad was a scout sniper. his targets would hear the sound of his barret M107.50 caliber sniper rifle right before nothingness and chuch bells, hitting the ground like a 180 lbs. bag of wet, black platnium cow shit.

But maybe its not for me. i come from a long line of military men. Grandfathers, great grandfathers, and uncles on both sides of the family. But maybe it's not for me. I found out that if you join the marines they pay 25,000 dollars of your student loans. getting a bill for 36,000 dollars just last week made the military look a little better. but maybe its not for me. thats just what the world needs, another drunk marine, walking around your town with his chest pushed out in arrogant pride, that you all can call smitty. My dad said to me, Don't you love your country?, and i said Yes. well maybe i just like it a lot, not love it. Its like weve only been on a few dates and i don't know if i love it yet. the pressure he puts on me to join the marines feels like i am pulling this massive weight that is the marine corps emblem, globe with an anchor coming out the side and an eagle on top. land, sea, and air. first to go, last to leave type of shit. it says it all in this emblem. My father bleeds camoflage and eats full metal jacket rounds. this is how i was raised. toughen up, toughen up, don't you dare cry. all of me is not my father, but my heart, that big chest muscle that keeps me alive, does pump marine corps blood. but maybe its not for me.

Monday, April 14, 2008

credits are rolling

Cinderella and Prince Charming untied the knot shortly after the credits rolled past. It is a wonder, I turned out the way I did. And I am speaking for a lot of young men out there. Good young men. I mean, I'm not saying I'm Jesus Christ or anything, but it's not like I'm bad. It baffles me how many people are on there third and forth marriage. It seems I am part of this whole generation of children raised by single mothers. Single for the most part. Maybe it's okay though. Maybe thats the plan. Your only dealt the cards you can handle, you know?

Growing up, I went to public school. Nine of them actually, we moved around a lot when my parents were still married. I guess I was in the 5th grade when I met Josh. He was one of those kids that was good at everything. It didn't matter what we did, from spelling tests to a game of one on one basketball, Josh always came out the winner no matter how hard you tried. Annoying really. It didn't matter though, Josh was my friend.

It wasn't easy changing schools so often. The worst part is the cafeteria. Not knowing anyone, just trying to fit in, you walk through the lunch line and pay your two dollars for a soy burger, tater tots, salad with ranch, and chocolate milk, fifty extra cents got you an ice cream sandwich, then
thanx to the lady with the hair net that looks like she's been cut from mountain rock, when she takes your money. This is the most terrifying part of the school day, standing in the no man's land that is the area between the lunch line and the hundreds of round fold up tables with five or six 4th and 5th graders sitting around them. You pan around but try not to linger for fear of being spotted, you know, like a scout sniper you try to just blend in and get quickly, but not too quickly, to the back of the cafeteria where at every school there is an empty table no one sits at...except the new kid. It is every new kid's dream, that while making this trek through a field of other people you are positive don't like you, that you see a hand fly up and you lock eyes with someone that says, "hey new kid, come sit here." This dosnt happen very often, but it did for me that day. It was Josh that called me over and it was at that moment that my place in the school was set. It was me and Josh. Pals for life, and people knew that. Even when we changed schools after a few years we stayed best friends, going over to each others houses and driving each others sisters crazy.

I haven't seen Josh in awhile now. Probably two years or so. He kinda fell off the face of the world after he dropped out of High School, only coming back around when he needed a place to stay or twenty bucks (later I found out it was for cocaine). Because of my parents divorce, my mom, two sisters, and I had to move to a much smaller house in another school district. This is the event that put distance between mine and Josh's friendship. We couldn't hang out everyday anymore. Once again I was the new kid. But maybe that was the plan. Maybe if my parents stayed together and we hadn't of moved, I would still be right next to Josh, cutting out two lines of coke, one for him one for me while passing a joint to and fro and splitting a case of beer or a bottle of heaven hill whiskey.

Everything seems to happen for a reason. I guess I was meant to be something better. So believe it or not I am thankful for my parent's divorce. Not only did it get me away from what I could of been, but it forced me to become the man for my sisters and mom. Responsible, mature, and respectful. Three things Josh is not. Life after the credits are rolling isn't so bad.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

a cancerous tumor

Art is cancer. Art has completely infected my entire being. It is as if I have a brain tumor that is growing in size every second of everyday. It is slowly making me go insane. I come home to rest from a 36 hour binge in the studio and all I think about is going back. Art is being an alcoholic. I lay down and my mind races. There are one hundred pieces of scrap paper on my bedside table. All of them scribbled with 2 am, 3am and 4 am notes. Notes which make no sense waking up in the morning after an hour's worth of sleep. I have to have a notepad on me at all times or I fear I will come up with a great idea or the solution to some problem and forget it in a second. When I don't have my note pad, the small square bar napkins are what infest my front and back pockets, and those are hard to organize. I have begun writing on my hand while driving, and after my hand is covered with the notes about art, ideas for new work, and titles for new pieces, the chickenscrath half cursive half print starts to journey down my forearm. Art is ink poisoning. Unable to escape, I succumb to it. Art is a plantation owner. Everything I own has the byproduct of art making clung to it like barnacles. A constant reminder. Paint has tainted everywhere I frequent. From the paint on my dress shoes, to the blue stain in the concrete on my front porch 10 miles from the studio. It has ravaged my entire existance, infecting all my belongings with little colorful spots. Art is herpes.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

a month's worth of quotes

Shaun - After this beer, I've had every beer they have on tap.
Smitty - How many beers do they have on tap?
Shaun - 22.

Jay - How come all you drink is Bud Light?
Smitty - I've got a simple mind and a simple taste. Bud Light. That should be a fucking commercial.

Shaun - It ain't easy being skanky.

Shaun - I like my beer cold and my women blurry.

Alex - Why are you so good with girls?
Shaun - It's because of my awesome-nicity, which translates to the second coming of Christ.

Shaun - I drink way less than you guys.
Smitty - Really?
Shaun - Yeah, except when I'm drinking.

Shaun - I have low standards and high self-esteem.

Smitty - If your gonna be a dick be a big one. I think it was Ben Franklin that said that.

Alex - You know what I just realized?
Sara - What?
Alex - I've been awesome my whole life.

Shaun - I am the reason girls shouldn't sleep around.

Shaun - What's so skanky about bangin?

Shaun - Hitler couldn't come up with more offensive shit.

Shaun - It makes me sick how awesome we are. I woke up this morning and vomited thinking about how badass we are.

Shaun - I'll make that bitch scream like Ann Frank, or wait which one was the deaf and blind one.
Smitty - Helen Keller.
Shaun - Yeah, I mean Helen Keller.

Shaun - Women are better? Fuck that! Who created fire? And the wheel? And children? Man created fire. Man created the wheel. And man forced women to have children.

Allison - Ouch Shaun!
Shaun - What?
Smitty - Dude, you just stepped on her foot.
Shaun - Whatever, they scream my name whether I fuck or not.

Shaun - Give me a minute. I'll hurt your feelings.

Smitty - What are you guys fighting about?
Shaun - Alex said he fucked my grandma.
Alex - No, I said she just blew me once.
Smitty - Is that why she always has a cold sore?

Alex - You know the best part about you sleeping on the bottom bunk?
Smitty - What?
Alex - I masterbate on top of you.

Allison - What the hell are you doing?
Alex - Taking off my pants.
Allison - Why?
Alex - I don't know.

Shaun - I just stumbled and I'm sitting down.

Jay - Be careful with that one. She looks like she'd fuck you til you bleed.

Alex - I'm a square peg in a round whole.

Shaun - The best part of having sex with that girl was learning her name.

Duane - Floyd?
Floyd - Shut up I'm talking to my friend.
Duane - Motherfucker, you don't have friends.
Floyd - I know. I had to go down the street to rent-a-buddy.

Duane - Shut the fuck up, I'll kill you!
Floyd - Faggot, your fixin to make me take off my shirt.

Shaun - I'm gonna write a love song called I don't love women I love sex.

Alex - When I drink this beer, I feel like I'm in abercrombie and fich.
Smitty - Really? I feel like I should be holding a basketball. Miller Chill the Gatorade of beer.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008


Most great ideas are simple. I came up with this one out of nowhere. Sitting in class, day dreaming it occurred to me that all my work is about my father, but he is not depicted in any painting or drawing. His fingerprints are always there though. I think about him non stop when I am working.

Lately, I have been painting watercolor portraits of girls drinking from red keg cups, and after looking at the work of Zak Smith, I went out and bought some black india ink. The ink had been sitting in a drawer of my studio for months. Thats not good. I believe when you get a new material you should experiment with it immediately. Over the course of painting these watercolor portraits, the thought had crossed my mind to use beer instead of water. Why wouldn't it work? Trying to come up with an idea for a new project, I started sketching a portrait of my dad. My dad the way I know him. Depressed, mean and beer in hand. Later on that night I hung a 36" x 48" piece of thick paper on the wall of my studio and started to roughly draw out the sketch of my father. I went to the corner store and bought a twenty-four ounce Natural Light (Dad's brand of choice) for a dollar thirty-nine, came back, poured the beer in a cup, got out my biggest brush and started soaking the paper with beer. I then diluted some ink with the beer to make three different values. Around a two, a five and a nine. I painted unlike I ever had before. I wasn't worried about what it was going to turn out like. I wasn't even thinking about art. I was just thinking about my dad and how this soaked piece of paper smelled just like him. I got his face pretty much done and just kept going. I only worked on the piece for an hour and a half before it was done. After I felt like the ink drawing was finished I used a clean brush to paint the rest of the beer on. This made the drawing run down to the floor. When I drug the alcoholful brush across my dad's forehead the beer ran down through both of his eyes, giving the illusion he was crying. I started to cry at this point. Crying by myself at 12:30 am in the studio. I kept on painting the beer on. More and more until the can was empty and soaked into the paper, dripping onto the floor. I painted until everything I saw was clouded with tears. I am not sure what this meant, but I felt better about things. I think it was just what I needed. All my work really revolves around what I see in my father, but this was the first painting I have ever done of him. I think it was long over due.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

when i was seventeen

I have always been the youngest one of all my friends. Even the guys in my grade were older than me, due to my birthday being in September. But i didn't act my age. I had this friend in high school named Geoff, but we all called him Cookie. He was senior when I was a sophmore. After Cookie graduated he started DJ-ing at all these clubs and bars in Cincinnati. He was getting pretty popular around town for being, as he called himself, "The Professional Partier."

He calls me up one Wendsday and asks me to come hang out at this club called Jeckle and Hyde, he will put us on the VIP list. I was a little nervous being that I was seventeen, had school the next day, and didn't want my mom to find out what I was going out to do, but I shoved all that to the back of my mind and called up a few friends. I get there with my buddies and see that there is a line halfway down the block to get into this place. A line overflowing with slutty looking girls with spagetti string t-shirts and skirts so short you could see their asses. Those girls that look like they're on springbreak year round. All the guys in line were wearing striped suit shirts but no suit jackets, silver chains, and almost every one of then had gelled, spikey hair. After we walk by a group of them my buddy, Shaun, says to me, "Fuckin Fags."

We, in our worn out Arizona jeans and plaid button downs, walk past the entire line of people, right to the bouncer and tell him we are on the list. He looks, says, "Alright," and without taking our ten dollar cover charge or checking our IDs, gives us the paper braclets that mean nothing except, we can buy drinks. It made me laugh then and it makes me laugh now. Idiot thought we were twenty-one. Cookie always worked the "College Nights" at the clubs, but the rule has always been, "Eighteen and Up." I still had a baby face and two teenage birthdays left.

Once we were re in, I go right up to Cookie to say, "What's up?," and he screams to me, over the blarring rap music, that he told the bartender we worked for him. That meant free drinks all night long. Kids in a candy store. We ended up spending most of our time right in front of the bar, ordering beer after beer, sending girls drinks and lieing to them about who we were. We left stumbling drunk with smiles on our faces that you couldn't have slapped off.

That first Wednesday turned into every Wednesday. Pretty soon Thursdays we were going with Cookie to a club called Purgatory. Fridays we went Club Exchange. And Mondays we went to a bar called Fat Shannon's in Mainstrauss Village, where Cookie landed a bartending job. Seventeen and eighteen year olds getting drunk for free, four and five nights a week. Getting a couple hours sleep and going right to school for Religion IV in the morning.

One Monday night we actually saw a group of our teachers walk into that bar, Fat Shannon's. But we snuck out the back just before they saw us, with two pitchers of beer and finished them in the ally. We liked going to Fat Shannon's the most because it was quieter, not to much rap music playing on the jukebox, and they had a fifty-cent pool table. We were getting pretty good at playing guys for five bucks or a pitcher of beer a game. I remeber one time these guys from the Chicago asked to play. Two giant, older, black guys, probably in their late thirties. They had brought there own pool cues, which we took as a sign that they knew what they were doing. It was our table so my buddy Shaun broke, and made a couple solids in on the break and then followed it up with another shot. One of them shot and missed so it was now my turn. I ran the rest of our balls in, calling each shot, and then pocketed the eight ball to win. We were all laughing and taking high fives from the locals that had gotten to know us pretty well. They asked us for a rematch, but it was after two and we had drank our far fill, not to mention we had school the next morning. As we were walking out, one of the guys we beat asked me how old I was, and with a drunken smerk I said, "Seventeen, how old are you?"

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

on train tracks

I grew up next too an old abandon train yard. The foundations of buildings, long since demolished, still exist as huge stone slabs with twenty-foot maple and evergreen trees shooting up through the cracks. Like in that poem "The rose that grew from concrete." This place was a utopia for childhood mischief. The sun-bleached beer cans and cigarette butts we stole from our parents' are still there littering the landscape. Nearby was an old, rusty crane used for loading railroad ties into the cargo holds of the train cars. We had looped a rope around the massive hook and tied a tire to the end of it. Every so often a train would roll by, and we would moon the conductor and throw rocks at the train. Some of the braver boys, myself included, would run along side the train, grab the ladder, and if the train was moving slow enough hop on to ride for a few seconds then jump off. I still have a whole drawer full of flattened pennies, dimes, and quarters. My pirate booty. Just a little ways from the clearing of the yard, the fort we built using found wood and creek rock is still standing. Not bad craftsmanship for six intercity kids. Not a hundred yards south was the bridge. A rusted mass of steel half a football field long, that towered sixty feet above the lickin river. I remember stealing a kid's bike and tossing it over, just to see it splash in the water below. But old tires and cinder blocks, in there abundance, were our favorite thing to throw over. We spent entire summers here doing nothing. Making up our own adventures, like a modern day Tom and Huck.

This place has become my inspiration. With most of my childhood friends succumbing to heavy drug use and/or jail, it is just me here, ten years later, using our Neverland as a place to ponder. As a place to get away from the demons that are calling my name. The same demons that my friends had listen to. This is the place where I feel safe. The train tracks are a metaphor I use for the heredity of addiction. A train cannot turn off it's path. It is forced to follow the tracks that have been laid out for it. The individual tracks act as my veins and the rhythm of the passing train is my pulse.

Monday, January 28, 2008

What are you looking at?

Artistic Spirit and Spirits? I chose this title because my inspiration comes from spirits. Spirits - meaning alcohol. My father is a severe alcoholic and has been all my life. I have become so obsessed with this aspect of my life that some would consider it unhealthy.

Some families’ skeletons are in the closet. My family’s skeletons were buried in the front yard, right out in the open for anyone to discover, but no one so much as hinted to us that they knew. To create my artwork, I go out to my front yard with a shovel and I start digging up the bones. I examine these things, these secret events that occurred in my past and continue to occur today. I start reliving them as I dig deeper into the ground. The hole that I am digging is not a place of dreams or fantasy; it is quite real to me. As I apply these “bones” to canvas or paper, the pain that used to occur gets a little easier to deal with, although it will never disappear completely. Art is powerful emotion recollected in agitation. I can’t completely let go of these secrets, so they eat at me and eat at me until I come to a breaking point. I feel like I was baptized in a river of whiskey, and the stench, to this day, is still oozing out of my pores. The images of my father’s addiction are carved into the back of my skull, and it has poisoned my thoughts to a point where it is impossible to go a day without thinking of it. I am haunted by the reality of it all. It is at these points, these “breaking points,” where the idea for a new work reveals itself.