Before you start reading, I wrote this while listening to one of my all time favorite tracks by M83 Feat. Zola Jesus – Intro (above) and I like to think it makes this a much more enjoyable read. Then again, I’ve been called a crazy artist once or twice...
The Freedom Series.
People post comments on my work every single day, telling me about how my art and or vision had inspired them in someway. Which in return is great inspiration and motivation for me. Some of the stories that people have told me about how my journey has helped them in someway have moved me to tears.
Instagram has blown my mind, it’s changed my life and it’s changed me - you’ve changed me. If you’re reading this, chances are you came across my work on Instagram and for whatever reason you’re interested enough in what I do to read this now. I don’t know how or if I’ll ever be able to put into words what that really means to me, Thank you.
With the price tags on my artwork now starting at over $9,000 and some reaching $16,000, it’s becoming more and more of a luxury item for literally the rich and famous. Despite the money being paid for my work, after gallery commissions, material costs and marketing fees are paid, I’d be lucky to make $2,000 on an artwork, before tax and before I spend a standard 8 days work on each piece.
I come from humble beginnings. I’ll admit I’ve always lived in a nice home thanks to my family but I’ve paid my way since I got my first job when I was 14 and I worked full time for 9 years through a range of different jobs on the minimum wage. I’m very accustomed to making my money go a long way and I always lived one paycheck at a time, I still do.
More than anything I appreciate the few people who believe in my work enough to spend thousands of dollars on it, but in a way I hate that my art is so expensive. Even for myself! I still can’t afford to not sell an artwork if the offer is there. I’ve had to sell some of my favorite works to stay in the game, pieces that I’ve fallen in love with, they’ve taught me incredible things and represent some of the most emotional and personal experiences in my life and I can’t afford to keep them.
I want my work to be available to everyone else just like me who doesn’t have thousands of dollars available to spend on art.
I also want to do far more with our conservation efforts. $25,000 was a huge amount of money for me to give away, but inside the idea of making a REAL difference in the world, it’s a drop in the ocean. I want to be able to afford, to put whatever is needed into the projects I care about, Like the Goongerah Environment Center and other local wildlife centers.
Which leads MGRA to our latest endeavour: prints. Aimed at catering for my fans on social media. We hope that these prints will enable us to take MGRA to next level, with a larger voice.
Aside from the visual aspect, I personally hope that you can see a little more in my work. The simple fact that two years ago I never even had a social media account for my work, only a few people knew I was even interested in art. From then to now having my artwork all over the world in people homes, computers, phones, magazines, clothes even on TV channels, worth thousands of dollars a piece and collectively worth much more, it represents an incredible journey and my long time fans will see that. Maybe It’s a bit much to hope for but in my perfect world people will look at my work and smile, not because of how it looks, but because of what it represents – self-belief, hope, passion, transformation and motivation, all leading to a better life.
In my perfect world people will look at my work and be motivated and inspired to do something more with their lives. I see so many people settle for second best because it’s easier and they’re comfortable where they are in life. Not long ago I was in that same boat but I’ve learned that it's okay to scare yourself with ambition and that a real transformation is rarely going to occur without that fear.
I never released and artwork for it to be just that. If you’re looking for a pretty picture, there are plenty of cheap prints around… This is and always will be something much greater than that, even if I’m the only one to see it that way. I’ll always stay true to my good intentions, I’ll work hard, I’ll do it because I love it and through my art MGRA is going to impact the conservation of our natural world and hopefully a few more peoples lives.
In relation to what my art has provided for my ambition and myself personally, this is ‘The Freedom Series’.