When I was born, my dad gave me the name Cedric so I could be a playwright without having the burden of picking a pseudonym. At a young age, he used to read to me short stories by Dostoevsky. My parents told me that I used to get angry during Dostoevsky-time and throw books across the room. I think this was my first rejection towards fiction. When I was in the 4th grade, unbeknownst to me, my teacher was going to fail me because she thought that I was unable to read. I remember going on a family trip to South Dakota and reading the road signs out loud as we drove by. A surprise to my parents because they also thought that I couldn’t read. When asked by my teachers why my reading grades were so bad, I replied “I don’t want to read the stupid frog books”. While Frog and Toad Together and Fox with Socks appealed to the average 4th grader, I preferred checking out informational books like How to Draw or How to Fold Origami or textbooks about insects. Even as a child I was a curious explorer. This about sums up my educational experience. I was never really committed to my formal education and I discovered that many of my interests were different than my peers.
Things did not really change in my adult life. I remember purchasing my first iPad and using it to read and download public domain philosophy books. What kind of nerd buys an iPad to download public domain books and read them between class periods? This same iPad was later stolen and I remember getting an email from the Apple store saying “Thank you for purchasing Angry Birds” – this about sums up humanity, an iPad is one of the most powerful and technologically advanced informational tools in existence, and people use it to play bird games.
I remember being coerced into going to a Riot Fest concert with one of my co-workers around my 25th birthday. I didn’t have my camera with me so when I lost my co-worker I found myself alone with nothing to do. It was at this point that I realized what “fun” meant. I remember being so excited that evening that when I got home I had to explain it to my brother. “Fun” is the social situation of standing around drinking with your ‘friends’ and not doing anything productive at all; or more to the point, fun is not doing anything productive at all.
What I love about reality is that you don’t have to imagine the ridiculous, often it already exists. I believe that art should be a subjective experience and that the motifs that I place within my artwork should only start the conversation. I think I paint realistically because I want to show people the world that I see through my lens.