The Artist Experience — Ep. 2

Featuring: SCUM.SOL

Welcome to The Artist Spotlight with The Absence Experience! Providing artists with an opportunity to not only talk a bit about themselves and their inspirations, but also to share their work for all of us to appreciate and marvel at!

Our second artist appearing on The Artist Experience is someone that many of you may have seen some incredible artwork from on Twitter! SCUM.SOL

Tell us a bit about yourself! Where are you from? Where do you live now? Family? Pets?

I travel a fair amount, both for work and for fun — I am an avid rock climber and do my best to spend 3–4 months on the road. I was born in Tucson Arizona and I would definitely credit that place with giving me my creative energy. There’s a raw maker mentality there. It’s a breeding ground for creatives who end up moving to other larger places. Unfortunately few stick around.

What types of art do you focus on?

Graphic design and digital painting. I do branding and photography professionally and I am inspired by the greats — Bauhaus/Mondrian/Swiss minimalism etc. I’ve been really interested in brutalism lately and want to continue exploring it in my art and my growth as a creative.

Did you study art in school or is it something that you do as a hobby/passion?

It’s a lifelong passion. I’ve been drawing since I could hold a pencil, and I’ve been doing design for almost 15 years. I have always wanted to do true creative expression. Design has “utility” in the traditional sense — it serves a purpose. So while it’s objectively creative — it’s not quite the same as putting pencil to paper and following it intently, unsure the entire time what it’s going to do. In the NFT space I have found people who just want to see what comes out of my brain. It’s a beautiful thing.

What/Who are your biggest influences/inspirations? Do other personal interests influence your art?

Alejandro Jordorowsky, Moebius, Gaspar Noe are three of my biggest heroes creatively. These are humans with an entire personal universe tucked into their heads. Some of them are more aesthetic than others, but their creative energy aligns greatly with mine. Because I love design, I enjoy clean lines and minimalism — but I also love adding that one feature or mark that makes it “difficult.” I want to make things difficult. Design is all about making something immediately digestible to the viewer, the artists I mentioned are about unwavering vision and detail and emotion. I try to find my art somewhere on that cross section. Beautifully aesthetic chaos and crispy clean lines.

What steps have you taken to develop your art career so far? Is this your dream job? What is your dream project?

I have had so many dream jobs and passions. I am obsessive. I can’t know where I will be or what I will learn in the next three years. I just know that my life will be drastically different next week than it is week ad nauseum as long as I am in this web3 space.

What is your personal favorite piece that you have created? Why?

It’s always the piece I just finished because I have the most fresh relationship with it. To create something is to fall in love, and when you’re done, break up with it. I try to view life as the experience without arbitrary finish lines. Each piece teaches me something about my brain/hand relationship and how they create things that interface with the world. I just hope I can keep falling in love. The moments of deep concentration and frenetic creative sessions are what life is all about.

Do you ever collaborate with other artists? If so, how and who?

I am planning a collaboration with an artist. I plan to do a “Call and Answer” format. I will create something and let them add their flavor to it. And Vice Versa. I am currently collaborating with the DeGods artist on their Deadgods collection. In this instance I am a mercenary. — doing my absolute BEST to mimic their style. It’s a creative challenge I’ve never taken on and it’s been a wild ride for my ego and confidence. But Delilah (the DeGods artist) is wildly talented and I have learned a LOT.

How would you describe your “style”? When looking through your art on Twitter, you seem to be very diverse in your skillset!

I think I am still searching for my voice. I would love it if I had a distinct style — but I am also weary to create the same thing over and over. Again. I’m difficult.

How did you get started in web3? What about Solana specifically? Have you been involved with any projects at this point?

My boss and mentor helped me get in around October of last year. I’ve been working with the DeGods team and I am looking to potentially branch out to my own project at some point.

Who is your favorite Solana based artist? What about your favorite traditional artist? Why?

Favorite Solana artist…John Le appeals greatly to my sensibilities. But I just found Sir Candy Apples and he just DRIPS style. Also I think Resistt is like the artist I actually want to be. When I look at their art I feel like it’s time to pack it up. Resistt is WAY undervalued.

Do you invest in NFTs or do you stay on the creation side of things? If you do collect, what are you bullish on right now?

Bullish on Degenerate Trash Pandas. Love the art. Love their initiatives. Love what they’re working on creating. Love The community. It’s all great. Love DeGods — they’re just straight Hype BEASTS. DAA was my bucket list project. So glad for my sexy leopard Ape. This has replaced collecting toys some how. I truly love trading JPGS with magic internet money.

Have there ever been any major challenges that forced you to almost give up on art?

No. I don’t create for money or approval. Life is dumb without art. Everyone should create. We’re literally the only things we know of that hold the vastness of worlds within our minds. We are beautiful and we should all express it. Not for money or opportunity.

Any advice for aspiring artists?

Give things away. Share. Lift others up. Contribute. Be kind.

Anything else you would like to add?

This was meditative and refreshing. Thanks for letting me slow down long enough to write all of this.

Thank you all for reading and learning a bit about another one of our Solana Community members, SCUM.SOL. This was a refreshing read for me, especially with what is going on in the world. Sometimes it is important that we, as mentioned by SCUM.SOL in his last answer, slow down.

So I challenge you all to slow down and appreciate the beauty around you every single day. Take a minute to really explore how complex this big beautiful world we share is, and expand your horizons to appreciate something new. Push yourself to, as SCUM.SOL said, do something difficult.

Thank you again for reading, and we hope that you all continue to follow, as we have a many more articles lined up!

TAE

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The Absence Experience

Welcome to The Absence Experience, an experiment of artistic expression on SOL. Join the collective, join the experience, save the world.