The University of Findlay
My understanding of creativity began to mature just before my sophomore year of college, when I heard a longtime mentor describe it as a learned skill. This new perspective forced me to think about creativity differently—not as some mystical inspiration that strikes certain inventive people from nowhere, but as a muscle that can be strengthened through practice. In the years since, my process has radically changed and become more intentional.
I have realized that creating something convincing does not necessarily mean making it look exactly as it would be seen in reality. This inspiration affected more than just the aesthetic elements of my pieces, however, and I tend to choose subjects that are also much more than what they seem at first glance. Before the physical creation of the art even begins, I attempt to understand these subjects on multiple levels, recognizing the complexity, the weightiness, and the beauty that comes with any given thing. No matter what medium, this effort manifests itself in a consistent, dramatic use of shadow and light that both illuminates the subject and raises more questions. I seek to capture an image that may appear bleak or forbidding, but is also optimistic and hopeful.