So when you click on an "About Us" button, you never quite know what you're getting into... But you've clicked the button and therefore agreed to a sort of "social contract" between us. Now you're kind of obligated to keep reading...
Anyway, I'm Brad. I'm the one with the goatee in this picture. The female next to me is the reason it's not just an "About ME" button. That's Stephanie (I'll get to her in a moment).
I'm actually quite certain that I don't have an ounce of talent that I didn't have when I was 17 years old. Instead, what I've gained over the last decade is a bunch of methods and tools (read that as "cheats and gimmicks").
It's true that I racked up some student loans going to art school, but I could list every useful thing I learned in college on one index card... and I would have picked up those skills far quicker in the real world. In fact, my education really began when I dove into commercial art and started getting my hands dirty.
Life as a production artist is bizarre to say the least. One moment, I'm sculpting manatee flippers and the next I'm airbrushing giant sandcastles. Every day is different. Uncertainty is the constant...
Are you an aspiring artist? Here's a tip: 85% of production artistry is understanding products... You'll learn VERY little about that in school. I shape foam with electrified wires and chain saws. I sculpt oil clay with dental tools... Weird, right?
And it's FUN...!!! I still can't believe a grown man can get away with doing this stuff! I spend half my time sculpting and painting animals. Heck, my co-workers ARE a bunch of animals...
And I travel so much I should have postage on my forehead. I've painted gigantic murals in Alaska and worked in window displays in Times Square...
But I do have some down time... I'm a "starving artist" after all.
When I'm not struggling to keep my 20 year old car running, I'm using that time to focus on the bridging of my two real passions: figurative sculpting and ideas grounded in freedom.
In early 2011, I began a project in our spare bedroom, to create an homage to some very important people that have affected me. I believe they're the most important artworks I've ever made...
So now back to the girlfriend...
Stephanie is a graphic artist whose art adorns the sides of many of the motor boats, jet skis and RVs that no one can afford.
She's also the reason a starving artist like me can have such a sweet website!!! It's in its infancy but the design and content of the site are expanding constantly (as I am nagging her daily). Please keep an eye out for changes.
Steph's also been VERY patient with me while I've turned our garage into a chaotic sculpture factory, adorned with vacuums, compressors, pressure pots, chemicals and well... heads. (...just imagine what my prying neighbors must suspect is happening...)
I've been functioning on a modest budget (the eloquent way of saying I could be on food stamps). Creating and casting this stuff has been very costly, relative to my income. Mold making entails some unforgiving chemistry and it's a pretty expensive learning curve. I've often had to wait weeks at a time to purchase the equipment and chemicals needed to take the next step. But now I'm off and running with reproducible results!!!
The title "My Heroes Think" is broad by design. I'd like to sculpt other people who've influenced me as well. Some may include author Peter McWilliams, George Carlin, and the brilliant Stephan Molyneux.
I want to make a living creating a body of work that promotes Reason, Libertarianism and Austrian Economics. I want to find and serve a very specific market. I think people are finding these ideas and becoming individualists at a compounding rate. I think that when people are inspired "philosophically", they're more passionate about their heroes (like I am). I want to fuel that...
It's also the most rewarding thing I've ever accomplished... Being a rational thinker has never made me feel quite at home in academic or commercial art circles. I've wanted to make "libertarian art" for a very long time, but printing on t-shirts, bumper stickers and coffee mugs hasn't felt like the right platform for my expression. I feel like I've been looking for a proper direction to channel my talents, and I've finally found a fit.
But don't let this fancy-schmancy website fool you. I'm one dude, hand crafting statues in his home. These aren't coming off a conveyor belt in Bangkok. I'll be the last pair of eyes to inspect every statue with my reputation on the block, and the quality will reflect that.
Still, I'm new at this. Even worse... I'm making it up as I go. In fact, I know just enough to know how little I know (that made sense, right?). But I hope you'll be patient with me while we smooth out the bumps and improve on a good idea.
Though this is my own fansite, I promise I'm open to your good ideas (translation: hire me...) and your much appreciated feedback, so shoot me an e-mail and let me know what you think.
Wow. You suddenly know a lot about me. What, are you some kind of stalker?! Geez, get a life!
...And take care of it. Harry Browne would say: "...Go do something nice for yourself. And do something nice for your family.". I think that's good advice.