In fact, from high school to college, I painted portraits. At first, I developed my style quickly and could whip out a portrait in one to two days. My senior year of college, however, my perfectionist tendencies caught up with me and I began to experiment with different materials. Thus, one portrait now took one to two weeks to complete. I took on some commissioned portrait work and soon found myself in utter misery. Portrait painting had evolved from a creative venture to a mindless, time-consuming process that involved no more creative thought process. I had perfected andldquo;my styleandrdquo; and knew that my evolution as a portraitist had been finalized. It was time to move on.
As a designer, I consider myself self-taught. Recently I found myself in Todd Merrillandrsquo;s antique shop admiring a Paul Evans piece when the sales clerk cautioned me not to be andldquo;taintedandrdquo; by the work of previous furniture makers. If he only knew! I read every furniture design book I can get my hands on, from current production pieces to mid-century and Danish designs to studio build one-of-a kinds. I use this furniture knowledge not as inspiration for my own designs but merely as an influence and sometimes a starting point. Most of my inspiration comes from other sources.
The one thing that I really enjoy about furniture design is the ability to work with unlimited materials and endless creativity. I like to have that creative and artistic control of each project so as to fully realize my vision without compromise. Donandrsquo;t get me wrong, I do accept custom jobs and work with clients needs and requirements, however, these clients generally seek me out so that they know going in that its going to be my artistic vision! Addtionally, I work within the framework of my own pre-existing designs. Within my studio setup, I am able to task out the design reproduction to my studio craftsmen, This enables me to focus on conceptualizing and building new designs.