Last week, I added two new designs to the WWDN store.
One of the designs was drawn by my amazingly talented friend, Ben.
The other design was created by an amazing artist named Brad, who I don't know, at all...so I conducted this silly little interview with him, so that I, and the Posse, could get to know him a little bit better.
Ben, if you're reading this, I want to interview you next. It's nice being on the other side of the table for a change!
WIL: Your website, artpeace.com, has one of the most beautiful mission statements I've ever read. Would you talk a little bit about what influenced your beliefs?
BRAD: Well, Mr. Crusher, I think I believe in God, and I think God's pretty cool.
And I think that people are way too serious in life, and caught up in "self", so much so that they become very peaceless entities. I've found that people react very positively from my art; they start trippin' and sometimes even think they can paint and draw all of a sudden (those who are not visual artists). That's cool, cuz if a person thinks she or he can do something they will usually at least try to make something happen, and end up on a higher skill or mental plane than when they started. I get the same kind of inspired energy from artists whose work I admire.
W: You state that "the creative energy of art" can stimulate the positive
flow of peace. Personally, I completely agree with this ideal, but I wonder if you've seen it in action?
B: People get excited when they see something on canvas or paper or the movie screen that they think is the coolest thing they've ever seen. They talk to each other, they agree about the skillful execution or the tight special effects, they can converse about something heavy without even caring about any differences that may exist between them. A good piece of art can calm the need to tear off somebody's head. That's peaceful energy.
W: I feel that your work is inspired by Dali. Am I right, or am I O.J.?
B: You do NOT want to be O.J. right about now...Salvadore was the father of surrealism, a style from which I create most of my work.
W: Did you go to an art school? Care to plug said school? As an artist, how do you feel about formal education vs. experiential education for would-be
B: I went to the premiere art high school in Houston. I had to audition to get in, did so with flying colors, then flunked 12th grade cuz I fkd around and didn't do the senior project, which they announced during the final week was not just another project, but 1/2 the semester grade...missed it by 1/2 credit, and the instructor flunked me cuz I had been a smart ass to her a few weeks before. So I took typing in summer school, and now I can type about 80 wpm. That helps out alot on my Macintosh work.
As for the education thing? It's whatever way you get it. Some artists feel like they have to have some rules under their belt before they can get down; artists like me look for rules that will break if you hit 'em hard enough.
W: The design you did for WWDN, which you've called "Perfect Imperfection", is really amazing. Would you like to talk about what inspired this piece?
W: The Dodgers have been on a steady decline since FOX bought them. New GM Dan Evans has said that they want to "win now, not rebuild". What do you think of this attitude?
B: ... What? . . . Ok, ok I'll talk about "Perfect Imperfection" if it'll keep
us friends. One of the most amazing and harmlessly eerie sights in nature to me is a tree in the winter time when you can see all the branches. A billion branches that form this spiritual maze leading in seemingly endless possible directions that life can take you in at any given moment. The overall shape of this tree is almost reminiscent of the human brain...endless nerve endings. The eye is vision, insight, creativity, intellect. The green and gold iris depict sunlight causing the green (life) to exist, but there really is no eye there, just the impression that one exists. This image is of something that is the core by which we seek to perfect the imperfection
of the human destiny. Ok?
If the Dodgers have this kind of record, I think they may never win if he doesn't rebuild now.
W: Art vs. Commerce, Art *AS* Commerce, Commerce as Art. Discuss.
B: Art battling commerce loses almost everytime, if you're trying to pay bills.
Commercial artists, a group to which I technically but not always joyfully belong, don't draw and paint what they want, but what somebody with some money they need wants drawn. They incorporate their own style, true, but it still only goes so far. Then art becomes commerce. It's good work--very skilled execution--but usually it didn't really come out of that artist's soul, just out of the need to eat. Dali didn't give a damn what people thought, just as long as the work was good in his own sight. That's how I am, I think that's how any true artist is, whether visual, musical, theatrical... whatever. Got to be real. Or else it's commerce masquerading
as art, and anybody who is actually alive can see right through it.
W: Your website is really cool, and the idea of walking through a building to check out the art is very similar to the the interactive menus on Vivid DVDs. Ever had a pornstar come to your website? Asia Carrera once emailed me, you know.
B: If she came (get it?) to my website, I never heard about it. I don't remember... did you ever get around to emailing her back?
W: Yeah, and I think I scared her away with my geekiness. She never responded. Guess I'll have to start fawning over some other pornstar now.
In addition to your website, you publish a magazine. Is publishing a magazine as hard as I think it is?
B: Before beginning work on Artpeace Uncovered Magazine which you can download subscription cards for at the website and mail in with your check or money order... o crap, that was shameless. I'm sorry...Wil, calm down, man--it
won't happen again. As I was -- I worked a few years at several local pubs in Houston and at an independent newspaper, so I got the experience needed to manage a large multi-department mag. Artpeace Uncovered actually premieres this coming September, and many, many thousands of copies will be distributed nationwide. It mainly focuses on nongalleried artists who me and my enlightened staff think kik ass, but the world hasn't yet been fully let in on that fact.
W: Thank you so very, very much for this amazing design. I think it's beautiful, and I am honored that you offered to do it for me. Thank you even more for answering my lame questions.
B: You know, Mr. Crusher, I'm actually one of the few people in the galaxy who don't hate you. I didn't think Captain Picard was grateful enough that time you saved the entire ship, so it is me who is honored to present to you a token of my appreciation. Peace and Prosperity to you, your family and all your readers.
W: Peace and Prosperity to you, as well. By the way, call me Mr. Crusher again, and I'll kick you in the nuts.