Interview with the artist conducted during the "While I Sleep" exhibition at the B. Hollyman Gallery/Sept. 2011
Q: How long have you been working on ‘While I Sleep’?
A: I would have to say about 2 years. I had been working in color prior to that time, and then I began to think about doing some things in black & white. I wanted to create some mystery.
Q: How would you describe this body of work?
A: It is an exercise into seeing something that is void of color. I thought about how I could make something that could be considered dark, into something that could be seen as intriguing, or even beautiful.
Q: You seem to play around with surrealism and dream-like settings. What inspired this mood and aesthetic?
A: Absolutely. It is based on a combination of several things. My dreams (especially), imagination, and my thoughts, or rather fantasy, of other dimensions and other worlds. I've always loved the notion of taking something out of its norm, and challenging the expectations of our given world.
Q: You have mentioned the idea of alternate dimensions before. Do you try and create them in the photos you make?
A: I think there is a lot that we don't see. For instance, it is estimated that 23% of the universe is composed of dark matter, and 72% dark energy; something that we can't even see, and it is all around us. I find that completely fascinating.
Q: Why do you like working digitally?
A: This technique of working digitally came to me by some encouragement from an artist friend of mine. He told me one day, "you know all these computer applications, why don't you try applying it to your art work?" I thought about it and said to myself, why not? I haven't stopped since. It was like letting the flood gates open.
Q: What is your process with finding movie scenes to shoot stills of? What do you look for?
A: I look at a lot of things. The composition of the scene, it's darkness value, if I find something mysterious about it, or maybe just very ordinary. And I think, how can I take this out of its norm? The science fiction films of the 50's is a gold mine for me. As a child I was always captivated by these films, and I would watch them over and over again.
Q: What does your work attempt to address about humanity?
A: Interesting that you would ask me this question. I think my work pushes the envelope for most people and sometimes it creates an uneasiness with the viewer. Call it "fear', but it is something that I believe is so prevalent in societies around the world. We seem to be constantly bombarded with ideas of why we should be fearful. Lock your doors! They're your enemy! Someone or something is out to get you! It's even driven into our conscience through manipulation from our governments.
I believe that fear creates intolerance, hatred, and sometimes even war. Maybe in some way, I want my viewer to confront their fears. Imagine that, a world without fear? Then I could truly say that we have entered the 21st century.