I guess right now I’m hoping my work becomes completely sustainable and good for the earth, but right now it’s more about bringing awareness to environments that actually exist and then calling into question why do we make these fake environments at natural history museums? Not that it’s a bad thing, but the idea of when the actual exists why go see the fake?
Q: Has actually working as a full-time artist matched your expectations of what it would be like?
A: It’s hard. A lot of it is rectifying money with the time you should be spending in the studio. I’ve sold some things but I’m definitely not living off of the wages from the prints I make. I’m lucky because I have the ability to teach, so I’ve figured out how to seek out those venues where kids are being taught art.
I don’t know what I was thinking it’d be like when I was younger. I got my master’s in order to do residencies, artist residencies, because I just wanted to travel and get paid to make art — so that’s the dream.
It’s totally possible, but you have to work all the time on your work and promote your work. There’s money out there for artists, there’s tons of money, you just have to be able to write and sell yourself.
It’s a lot different. I figured out that not only are you the creator, you’re also the publicist and the accountant, bookkeeping. You have to be able to wear many hats if you want to do this.
Q: What are your goals for the immediate future?
A: I actually have a residency this summer in Scotland. I’m excited about that. The project is going to be making small scale installations in the actual environment and then photographing them.
And then I have all these ideas about how to create environments without actually creating environments, like using light and sound to trick you into feeling like you’re in spaces that you’re not in.
Right now I’m just working on some traditional prints for a show in May at the Social Club. It’s nice to go back to small scale and do some smaller things.