Your paintings look like 1950's cartoons mixed with pop culture images, like your use of Dr. Zaius from "The Planet of the Apes"...were you a tv and movie junkie growing up?

I'm definitely influenced by cartoons, but even more so by commercial art of the 1940s - 1960s.  I think the cartoon look I like is derived from a few commercial artists who were doing the same sort of jazzy, hipster stuff for print and advertising beginning in the late 1940s. The references to "Planet of the Apes"and James Bond Movies are a result of the impact those movies had on my childhood. I wasn't a real TV and movie junkie as a child, but I wasn't sheltered from it either. Even now, I don't really revisit the movies and television I liked so much when I was younger, because I'm often disappointed - it seemed so much better when I was 10 years old!

What media do you work with?

Most of my original work is painted with acrylic and vinyl polymer paint on board.  I get the sharpest, flattest look with that medium.

Where do your icons come from? Ex. The bull… the retired pirate…

The icons are from all over the place-each has a different origin. The bull is a result of my love of Picasso, plus the Minotaur legend which I really like-something about wandering an endless maze, possibly meeting up with a horrible man-bull which might kill you. The retired pirate goes back to my love of the Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disneyland. I had all the Aurora models from the Pirates when I was a kid. The pirates that were skeletons were my favorite.

shag-art.comMy favorite thing to do in Pirates of the Caribbean was to play spot the video cameras… they're hidden all over!   Hey… when you do theme paintings like "The Calypso Show" series, do you go there to get a feel for the location?

I didn’t go to Trinidad to get a feel for the "Calypso Show." I’m really more interested in the cliché references to a place than the actual reality of a location. In all my Calypso paintings, everyone wears straw hats and plays bongos, which is based on the American misconception about the East Indies. It’s the same with my paintings of Paris, London or Germany (although I have been to those places). I’d rather paint a Frenchman as a beret-wearing espresso drinker, rather than what they really are.

Page 1 of 3