Who Am I?
Life is an adventure, one that is difficult to predict. The unchanging certainty of the past evokes a wide range of emotions from gratitude to regret, affirmation to distrust, while the emotions brought about by our pending future can often be daunting and intimidating.
My past, like most, contains a swath of emotions. I was born in Kenya, Africa where I was surrounded by a raw and natural beauty that whet my appetite for the visual arts. I spent much of my childhood riding my bike with friends through the forest north of our home, but I could also be found sitting beneath our stairs drawing the animals and beauty that surrounded us.
At age nine my family and I dealt with the emotional roller coaster of moving to the United States. We spent three years in Lubbock, Texas and in 1996 we moved to Portland, Oregon, where we found long sought-after stability. It was in Oregon that I began to see the calming nature art had in my life. I took art lessons at my high school as well as summer classes at Pacific Northwest College of Art.
After high school, I had a brief three semesters at Cascade College in Portland, Oregon and then transferred to Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas where, amongst the excitement of college life, I took my formal artistic development to the next level. In May of 2008, I experienced the exhilaration of graduating with a Bachelors of Art (BA) in Art and then the exhaustion of completing a Bachelors of Fine Arts (BFA) in Painting the following year.
The Florence Academy of Art (FAA) entered my radar toward the end of my studies at Harding. Even after a BA and BFA, I felt that there was more I could and should learn before setting out on my own as a professional artist and instructor. I spent a year and a half getting my feet wet as a professional artist and saving money before my studies began at the FAA in 2011. The intense critiques and lessons I received over the following 4 years at FAA allowed me to emerge with the skills to become a professional artist.
The next adventure in my life took place in Jonesboro, AR where I remodeled two houses and built another while keeping up with my art-making. The highlight of my time there came in the form of a beautiful young lady named Bethany who became my wife.
My present is being spent in Issaquah, WA as I work as a professional artist and look toward the future that art is helping create. The present time is the author of the future and I now stand on that precipice and passionately read what the Great Author and I are composing together, a composition that will ring for eternity.
Art is a bridge connecting the temporal with the eternal, the tangible with the imaginary, the seen with the unseen. It spans the distance between two souls—the artist’s and the viewer’s—and hopes to bring their worlds a little closer together.
Just as many bridges depend on the invisible yet very real force of tension for both function and grace, I as an artist use tension to convey the seemingly contradictory concepts of now and not yet, light and darkness, uncertainty and confidence. In each of my pieces, there is a question. Some beg to be answered and others invite you to immerse yourself in the understanding that sometimes our greatest enlightenment is illuminated against a canvas of the darkest moments in life. I beg you not to avoid the struggle, but to allow it to strengthen you.
Art is the physical representation of an artist’s theological worldview. It provides a place to meet and discuss Truth. I aim to reveal the Truth, as I understand it, to the best of my ability. My work is but a shadow of the reality I see. It is a glimpse into my spirit and into the Spirit of the One who made us. I invite you to open your mind and join me in the middle of the bridge to discuss what we have seen together.