What inspires your work? The grace and dynamic range of the human athlete as an abstract expression of how humanity rises to new heights, despite the physical and environmental limits and restraints we are born into… just kidding, I just like basketball. Could you ever consider doing something less creative? Recently I have started to consider it. I’ve found that being creative as a career – where you don’t have full creative control, are under pressure for it to be really good, and/or are on short deadlines – becomes less and less enjoyable as time goes on. Chuck Close once said, “Inspiration is for amateurs, the rest of us show up and get to work.” What are your thoughts on that statement? I call BS on Chuck Close. I don’t think you can just create something out of thin air with no influence or inspiration from the things that you have seen or experienced. Would you ever give up on an illustration or do you always push yourself through? If I’m drawing something and halfway through I decide it sucks, I give up. If that happens I always burn it and then ship the ashes to a small team of monks. They bury portions of the ashes in five remote locations across the earth. Have you ever experienced a creative block? How do you get through it? Yes, but I drive one of those old steam locomotives through it. Do you have any daily rituals? A set schedule or workflow? No. I truly do it only when I feel like it. Sometimes that means I don’t do anything for weeks. Since I don’t illustrate for a living, I can keep that flexibility. I suspect that is part of the reason I still enjoy it so much.
This interview was conducted fall 2014.