How did you get into debt?
Being accepted into Parsons School of Design in 2006, I had a care free mindset of what was to come for my future. I had very little to no scholarship money and committed to loans that I thought, in my young mind, I would be able to handle. I graduated with a BFA in fine arts and kept painting and drawing. Post graduation, I find myself in drowning in student loans and the rising cost of living in New York doesn't help. Living in this city with these debts seems like an never ending struggle. Something I fear will never go away.
How does your economic reality effect your art?
In my own artistic practice it makes me become more mindful of the materials that I use. I buy less quality paints and paper from what I truly want and have to accept the reality of what I am working with. I end up salvaging things of the street or reuse and repurpose old ones. Sometimes this works to my advantage and I am able to see my work in a whole new light and use materials and colors that I never saw for a piece. Other times, it becomes frustrating when I don't have access to those materials at hand. In any case, I enjoy creating whimsical colorful portraits that are both playful and innocent. But behind all of my current work, is a extreme level of stress and anxiety from the financial debt the from my Institution. You most likely cant see it, but it is there and it is most definitely my reality.
Would your work look different if you weren't in debt?:
Absolutely. I wasn't in debt, I wouldn't have to have this constant financial reminder. Most importantly, I would be able to work less and have more of the creative free time to explore these concepts in my head. If my debts had vanished, I would be able to afford the art supplies and materials that I need to create a solid body of work. Having these materials at hand would definitely help create more fluidity in my studio practice. In example I want to create a series of large scale fashion illustration portratis onto large scale wooden panels. Between the cost of time and money spent, it is not feasible at the moment. However, in a dream world, if my debt did in fact go away... I would have the financial income to make this a reality.