Where are you from? Where does the art journey start for you?
I’m originally from Glassboro, New Jersey. My art journey starts before I can remember. I was lucky to have an artistic mother who helped me develop my creativity from a young age. Art has been the most important part of my life for my entire life.
What is the first emotion that drives you towards creating an art piece? Do you recognize the connection immediately and let yourself flow on the creative process? Or do you "bake" the inspiration for some time?
It’s a very organic process that’s so deeply integrated into my life, it’s hard to quantify this way. It’s the same thing that would drive someone to brush their teeth or drink water. I used to think I made my best pieces when I was experiencing anxiety or depression, which I have always struggled with, and were originally the main driving forces behind my work. But now, I try to never stop making art, and I find it just as moving to create from a good place as I do from an unstable one. A key element to my work is allowing it to be the natural process it’s always been.
The push and pull of growing up and wanting to make intellectual and sophisticated work, while still maintaining the original childlike spark of wonder and carelessness that allows me to arrive at certain points without trying. That's the true magic in art for me, there’s a sweet spot where if you let go just the right amount, your art can open up whole other worlds to you. I try to go in with some kind of concept or idea to build off, but the process needs to remain organic to some degree with what I’m going for. It’s always just been a natural byproduct of my existence and I try not to overcomplicate that while creating.
What is the back story of your design? Because every one of us sees the world through separate lenses. How hard it must be to transfer it to other people?
I personally often find language to be an inefficient form of communication. When it comes to my own ideas, I’ve always preferred physical methods of communication, I find it much more accurate. So it’s always been the easiest way to communicate for me. The backstory of my designs are emotional spillage, the most natural way for me to get those things out. Looking at my work is definitely the easiest and most direct way to understand how I see the world.
When it comes to making a living from your art, what are the main struggles? And what would be your advice for starting artists?
My main struggle has probably been organization and stabilizing myself while being watched by many people, that pressure. I’m very introverted so having a large online following is sometimes an anxious experience for me. And I went from virtually no sales to a LOT of sales pretty much overnight, which made it difficult to keep organized and felt very unstable, since I didn’t really get a chance to develop the best method of doing things. So I’ve just been making all my mistakes as I go as everyone watches, and learning from them in real time. First piece of advice, you need to be able to take an L but more importantly learn from it and make adjustments. A lot of choosing this path for yourself is people telling you you can’t, people complaining about your pricing, lots of small “failures” like that (I wouldn’t actually consider them failures but they can feel like it) because not everyone is going to get it. The most important thing is to be able to take that and turn it into something you can improve off of. GET A PLANNER! STAY ONE WEEK AHEAD OF EVERYTHING AT LEAST. Because you’re likely doing the work of at least 6 people and that requires being one step ahead of everything. And most importantly, anyone can do what I’m doing through the internet. Just have patience, keep creating, keep posting, keep putting yourself out there and your customers will find you. Finally, the most important thing and a lesson I’ve very recently learned, allow yourself time to rest. Because if you don’t, you might end up doubling your workload from the mistakes you made while you were on autopilot from overworking yourself!
What do you prefer, single pieces or storytelling through a whole project? And what approach do you use in each case?
I like both. I make a living exclusively from single pieces as of right now. I’m starting to understand those pieces as symbols of beauty for me. They’re a way to perfect my craftsmanship, dive deep into detail work just for the sake of the obsession, and to simply make something fun, to look at and to use. But in my more personal fine artwork, I often enjoy a subtle element of storytelling through my pieces. I think of it like creating a visual narrative for the viewer to interpret and decode. I also enjoy exploring more experimental elements like performance and stop motion for this reason, and hope to incorporate them more in future work. I think versatility is important like that.
Why do you use certain materials? What connects you with them, and makes you feel they are perfect for your art piece?
I’ve pretty much spent my entire life searching for the best materials to transcend materiality. I don’t want you to have any idea what my work is made of upon looking at it, and I don’t want the thought to even cross your mind. I want its presence to be just as organic as any other naturally occurring thing. So I use whatever material is best fit for the application with this effort in mind. I have dedicated a large portion of my life to learning advanced techniques like glassblowing, welding, woodworking, sculpting, carving, mold making, etc in order to do this and give myself full creative freedom.
What does ART, in general, mean to you?
Art is my driving force and the only reason I’m able to enjoy this life. I don’t know what I would be without art and I don’t want to know.
The FOURLINEdesign team would like to thank Madison Polidoro for sharing inspiring thoughts with our community.