Tell us about your artwork, medium, style, subject matter, etc.
I am a figurative sculptor, mostly working in mixed media and ceramics. The fantasy and horror genres are my playground. Maybe my style is dark comic impressionist unrealism, but probably not because I have no idea what I’m talking about.
What are your biggest challenges in creating art?
Independent artists have to wear dozens of hats…taking care of business while still having time to create is my biggest challenge.
What is a day of working like in your studio/creative space? Do you have any rituals that help you get motivated or in “the zone”?
For me the best way to get in the zone is just to sit down and start working. I am most creative when I am creating. Sitting around and thinking can be productive, and that sort of planning is necessary when working on larger pieces, but for raw creativity, just jumping in the cold pool with no clue where I’m going is best for me. A typical day usually includes:
- The necessity of self promoting on social media (including photography and videography);
- Possibly taking care of sales, shipping, bookkeeping, event and travel planning, web page upkeep, studio maintenance, and/or purchasing supplies and equipment;
- Often doing online research, either related to my art business or for reference;
- and then hopefully actually doing some artwork…maybe creating a quick ceramic sketch (usually the funnest part of the day), and/or working on a larger, ongoing piece.
When you are in need of inspiration are there particular things you read, listen to, look at or do to help find that idea or fuel your work?
I often listen to music and books on tape while working…generally the darker the material, the better, and I like to draw ideas from a few words or single sentences, so inspiration spins off of, rather than follows, the thrust of the source. Poe, Lovecraft, Shelly, and Tom Waits come to mind. Regarding visual inspirations, the web is so full of amazing inspirational imagery that it is dangerous. I avoid looking at my favorite artists while working, for fear of regurgitating their vision.
What would people be surprised to learn about you?
“Stanat’s work will leave you with no doubt whose old donkey you are riding.” I have no idea what that means but I heard it in a dream so it must be true.
What advice would you give others just beginning their creative careers?
Being an artist is all about time well spent. Usually when people say to an artist, “You’re so talented!”, probably what they should be saying instead is, “You spent so much time doing artwork that now your work doesn’t suck!” So live frugally and make the necessary sacrifices so you have lots of free time, and then spend all that free time doing artwork.