“God, just give it breath." These are the words that I utter before beginning every piece. What I bring to a canvas is an array of thoughts, conditions, and questions, some deeply personal and others widely considered—that is, the “messy humanness” that I wear so well and that I long to figure out. I eagerly grab for paint, pastels, and miscellaneous tools that turn these loose concepts into images that can breathe, ones that have “more” to them than me. I am inspired by the thought that once I finish my work, the viewer can begin his or hers. The painting becomes an interface—taking and giving, asking and revealing—to an extend beyond that which I could plan for on my own. These pieces that currently maim my carpet and douse the walls of my tiny apartment are my outlets for digging deeper, connecting to others further, and living with more risk.
-TOT, June 2014