I’ve moved! After nearly 34 years I have returned to the city of my birth. It was a winding path that has lead me back to Austin - I was 2 when my family moved from here to the suburbs of Houston, and after a journey that included Colorado, New York City, and Raleigh I am returning as an adult with my wife and two kids (one of which is a 2-year-old boy of my own) to this now booming city. Among other reasons, my wife, Laura, and I had been feeling the desire to be closer to family with our young kiddos - which meant either moving to Texas or Maine - and in my career I have really come to learn the need to focus my time and energy behind the easel. We moved this last month and are really excited about the future and grateful to be here and to begin getting settled.
I got into this crazy profession because of a passion and calling for beauty - that feeling of transcendence when standing in front of a great painting or the magnificence of nature from which great art takes its inspiration. However and much to my surprise, I realized far too late in the game that there are a whole host of things that come along with chasing your dreams - not the least of which is taking up the office of an entrepreneur. (They don’t really teach you much about that in art-school…yet.) Now, don’t get me wrong, there is much good in being a skilled business person and much about that unavoidable aspect of an art career that I have come to enjoy (the myth of the bohemian artist who cares nothing for business is silly) - but there are just so many things in business and life that can cause me to set down the brushes that I found I must be ruthless about my priorities. So I decided to return to my first love and, as much as possible, focus on the art-making. That is part of what this move to Austin is all about. And as it turns out, many experienced entrepreneurs will tell you how important laser-like focus truly is to success.
It was an extremely tough decision to step back from the partnership and work I was doing with East Oaks Studio - but ultimately I found there were too many good ideas and exciting things to chase after, and for me, there simply was not enough time and energy go around. I think this is particularly true given my young kids and that I was determined not to miss out on their early years. So we decided to make a change. I wish Michael and Louis, and the growing crew back in Raleigh, all the best of success as they continue onward. Working with them was a valuable experience for me and I will greatly miss sharing a studio with them. We ended that season as friends and I am confident the future will continue to bring us together.