Stephen Gomez [sikartis]
What do you do? How do you define yourself as an artist?
I do freelance illustration for various different companies including fashion prints, video games, and sculpture. It's hard to really define myself as an artist and simply say this is what I do and this is how I do it. I just always try push myself and do the kind of work that I enjoy doing.
What is your message?
Be truthful and honest to yourself if not anyone else. Strive to be happy regardless of who's by your side.
Do you upload your work to the web? If so, where could we see it?
I have a deciant art and blog were I upload my works. Mostly just illustrations I do on the side for fun and occasionally projects I'm working on.
How is an idea born? For you, what is inspiration?
I've realized that most of my ideas come from a desire to escape. My creativity is almost a tool for me to get away from a place I don't want to be and find entertainment within myself. I hope to be able to give that same kind of entertainment to others.
What role does technology play in your creative process?
Technology has been an incredible asset to my artistic progress. I firmly believe that I wouldn't be the artist I am today without technology. It allows me to complete my projects much a faster and quite frankly work at the speed of thought. That way I can capture and idea as soon as it occurs.
How do you evaluate whether an idea is good or not?
This is a very difficult thing to measure. I guess you could say that a more popular idea is better, but sometimes little gems slip by the masses. Also something that gains critical approval doesn't always become very popular. It comes down to what kind of artist your are and what pleases you personally. If find that I keep going back to an idea and keep finding more things i like about, or keep being able to build on it, then I think it's a good idea.
Why do so many artists and creators have such volatile personalities?
The older I get the more I find myself being at odds with most people. I think If you're a good artist you have to view things differently. You have dive in to the more unnoticed and sometimes complicated aspects of life. This is a very difficult process that means you have to look at yourself and the people around you with a greater measure of precision. This will cause pain, and even alienate you from people. Artist suffer. Some artist don't know how to deal with this pain and put it outward. Or sometimes people are just asswholes.
How should a work of art be evaluated?
This ones really simple to me. Just ask yourself whether you like it or not. For whatever reason you may enjoy something it is yours and no amount of guilt or insecurity should be accompanied with that. It seems though in the world of art that it is measured at times by the people involved with the art. What social group they follow, their status in the world, who enjoys it and why. I think when your honest with yourself you are free to enjoy anything you want.
Must an artist reinvent him/herself everyday?
That sounds like an extraordinarily difficult thing to do. In certain circles it seems like that's the mantra. Rather than seeing any real form of reinvention when you see people like this it's change for the sake of change. No real intuitive thought or process into what these artist do or why people like them. I try to avoid these "movements" within art and the social communities that encourage and follow this sort of thing.
Which artists do you admire and how do they influence your work?
As an artist I'm also an art fan and have mountains of artist names who I admire and who have at some point inspired me to grow as an artist. Especially now with the advent of internet and immediate connection I have with the world. I'm finding more and more artist doing something interesting and new almost everyday. Famous artist, local artist, amateur artist, there all out there just waiting for people to see their work.
Is art necessary?
Art has and does exist within every culture and society. I don't think you can ask if art is necessary without knowing what it'll be like without art. I don't think I want to imagine that kind of world. :(
Does it pain you to let go of a piece you have sold?
Well with technology now my art pieces are mostly digital information I can print out at any time. I do however still begin most of my work traditionally with pencils and sometimes other media. I suppose I might be feel conflicted to sell any of those.
Is a work of art purchased, or is it better said, that it is the artist who is bought?
Well an artist is sold from the moment he decides to use his work for monetary gain. I don't mean that in a negative way. It's just the nature of society. The ability to do something you enjoy for a living is fantastic. But you have to come to terms with the fact that it is a business and you have to approach it as such.
How do you feel about the fact that the pieces exhibited in contemporary art museums are often of artists already deceased?
I believe that some cases are bit of a social phenomena of people who praise an artist who's died. This occurs fairly often in music when an artist becomes more popular in death than in life. I think a lot of people are attracted to the story of a "tragic artist".
What types of jobs do you usually do?
Portraits and concept illustration.
Which of your jobs or tasks do you most enjoy?
Do you personally collect any items?
I collect action figures, comic books, and art prints and posters.
What advice would you give to those just beginning?
Well I'm really concerned with how I started. I really wouldn't wish that kind of experience on anybody..., well unless you're an ass-whole. But I think new artist who are trying to break in or looking for some direction to go in should be careful with others ready to exploit them. My eagerness to work as an artist got the best of me when I worked o lot of jabs for little to no pay. I did those jobs to help my resume, but in the end it didn't matter much. Even my school experience seems to have little effect on my career. Not that school is bad, It's just not ideal for an artist. I just think if your new you should keep options open and try different things. Your primary goal as an artist is to be happy, and do what you want to do. So even if your in school you should be constantly trying to get to where you want to be.