My inspiration comes from the purity and simplicity of Zen painting, which uses brushwork and bold marks to convey spiritual awareness. Even without knowing the literal translation of the symbols, these ink paintings have always stirred something deep within me. The combination of deliberate, accidental and even subconscious brush work creates something truly unique and expressive, and I aspire for my art to speak to others in much the same way.
My process starts with small-scale ink drawings, using thin wooden sticks and sumi brushes, which are Japanese calligraphy brushes. These tools and fluid medium allow me to quickly and freely draw and paint across the paper. During my initial exploration, I often fill pages and pages with ink drawings until I uncover the composition that defines the moment or sentiment I am trying to express. Only then do I execute the piece on a larger scale, which could be a collage on paper, canvas or a printmaking process.
My aesthetic is influenced by my background in traditional printmaking techniques. As a fine arts major in college, I chose to focus my studies on printmaking. Every piece I create utilizes elements of traditional printmaking, from etching to relief, contrasting line widths and smudge marks to speckled ink, misaligned color layers and chine-collé. I continue to explore new techniques for creating my art, and I find that there's something interesting that occurs when happenstance leads me down a path–flaws become bouncing-off points, imperfections redirect the focus.
As an artist, I fervently believe that creativity should never be stagnant. Art is both a language and a connection between the artist and viewer. Art should not only feel alive, but it should heighten the sense of life in those who view it. My energy, emotion and spirit become part of every painting I create, and my journey as an artist is to awaken those same sensations in others.