Making An Impact With The Creator
Meet The Creator, LA-based painter, sculptor, custom-denim designer, + owner of Voice Of God Galley. The Creator is making an impression in the world of resin art + turning just about anything he can get his hands on into one-of-kind pieces—from empty bottles + cans to nostalgic tokens from his childhood. He’ll be showcasing a variety of pieces at RAW Artists’ group showcase Impact at Exchange LA on Wednesday, July 19. As he told us, he aims to “offend, disrupt + inspire”. We sat down with him to talk about the upcoming showcase + his vastly fascinating body of work.
Asymmetric Magazine: You'll be showcasing some work at RAW Artists at Exchange this week. What can we expect to see there?
The Creator: The show is going to have a ton of artists, fashion and music. It's my first showcase ever, so I'm really excited for it. I'll be showcasing a lot of stuff: my new jewelry that hasn't been seen much yet, sculptures, my ash tray pieces, canvas pieces, and some bigger pieces, as well. You really have to be there to see it all!
AM: Your resin art both preserves nostalgic and sentimental items and allows you to turn what other people may consider trash into art. Are there any other consistent themes you pursue through your work?
TC: I'd actually love to do more shows that have a specific theme. Right now, I have a ton of ideas, which is great, but I'd like to organize my creating a little more. I want to dive into themes that surround mental health. As an artist, we all have our mental issues, but it's something that needs to be talked about more. I would like to talk about it more aggressively in an eye-catching way. Also, a lot of my creations throughout my art career have been very sardonic and humorous, so I want to do a lot more making fun of people in some way. Especially luxury brands—I want to focus on materialism, what that means and what it's doing to us.
AM: And you have a clothing line, too, right?
TC: Yes. This is my second clothing line after I closed the first one I made when I was younger. My whole artistic journey started when I wanted to start a clothing line. While I was thinking of the line, the brand built itself. It's called Voice Of God clothing, and I don't intend for it to have a biblical feel, but it's just in the name. It's streetwear that merges the concept of religion and urban style. I don't mean religion like, 'Amen' and 'hallelujah', but for example, one of our design concepts is the word 'anonymity' with a strike through it. It's a play on 'no anonymity under god', but instead of the religious meaning, it’s relating to this day and age. There's no anonymity or privacy with the Internet. I use the idea of religion as a means to bring larger concepts to life. I do a lot of custom work with denim, too. I love working with denim. I use a lot of spray paint and graffiti markers on my custom designs. It's never clean; I like the rough, urban aesthetic.
AM: How would you describe your own fashion style?
TC: I'm inspired by tactical wear and streetwear. I'd say my fashion style is 'poor man chic'. I love customizing thrift store finds to give it a more luxury fashion look. I love black; I'm normally in all black, and I'm leaning into more of a punk style. My nails are always painted black. I will say: If you're a guy and you want to feel sexism, paint your nails—it's the easiest way to feel it. People always bring up my nails and ask what the deal is. It's weird, but now it's become a huge part of my style. That being said, my style is definitely more goth/punk-inspired and edgy. At art related events, I like to wear a face mask or ski mask because I want people to focus on the art and not me.
AM: You have a signature pattern that's featured on some of your pieces and custom clothing designs that's almost like your own language. How did that come about?
TC: It's something I have been doing forever—even back in my old notebooks in school. I could never draw, so I would always doodle. I started turning my doodling into lettering. The calligraphy style was always really simple and mindless to me. So, I've been bringing that back into my work now, and I call it my 'chaos calligraphy'. There's so much going on in my brain, that I just lean into that as a calming, peaceful thing. It's interesting because people try to read it or read into it, but while I'm creating it, it's so mindless.
AM: You work across so many different art forms—do you have a favorite medium?
TC: I enjoy making sculptures the most. I like the jewelry, too, and that overlaps with the sculptures sometimes. For me, my vision comes through the most in my sculpture work. If I wanted to draw Marilyn Monroe, for instance, there's no way I'm drawing her at all. I can't; it's not happening. But, if I wanted to encapsulate Marilyn Monroe, I could do it as a sculpture, and my mind makes more sense of it that way. I also love the shock factor of my sculptures; I want my work to be provocative. I'm really new to the art world. Aside from fashion, my background is photo and video work, so my U-turn into the art world making sculptures took everyone by surprise. I've always been upset because I always thought that I could never be an artist. It was always so frustrating because all my friends are really good artists. So, when I discovered my passion for sculptures, it created a new lane for me into the art world that I didn't know existed.
it created a new lane into the art world that I didn't know existed.
AM: What was the first sculpture you ever made?
TC: It was an old deconstructed tablet.
AM: What was the inspiration behind that?
TC: I saw an old tablet, and I wanted to dissect it and display it layer by layer. At that point, I was so uneducated about the material I was using, so the resin ended up really cloudy. Most people who use resin don't use it for the purpose or in the way that I do. It's not taught well or wildly, so there was no way for me to figure it out except to experiment. Now, I've been able to make so many discoveries with it and learn a lot to develop my own style.
AM: Where do your source the materials for your sculptures?
TC: Everything comes from things I've used with the exception of the alcohol bottles—I don't drink that much. I have bars save empty bottles for me, which is great because then I can use cooler bottles without paying for expensive alcohol. Everything else is sourced from myself—empty spray can bottles, trinkets, old video games, etc.
AM: Would you say that LA plays a role in your work or approach as an artist?
TC: Here in LA, I find it hard to get genuine experiences, so I really like to turn my house into a big creative hub. Close friends and friends of friends come here to make art. I really want people to collaborate, grow and evolve together. I want to be sure that I'm doing my part within my circle and that my friends have positive, creative energy coming from me. It helps continue the growth of new ideas, because nothing can happen by yourself. I want to make this a safe place, so whatever bullshit is going on outside, it's not in here. I will say the move here from Oakland, California is the only reason I am who I am today. I moved here for school thinking I would solely be working in photography and film. LA isn't kind to people, and that really taught me how to tread water and clean out my circle of people. In my experience, LA set me up to understand how most people operate, and it's so fast-paced. I learned how to adapt quickly and protect my energy and mind. It also helped me expand my mind into different cultures, and I think that totally shaped my art. But it was mostly the negative aspects of the city that shaped what I'm doing and how I do it.
nothing can happen by yourself.
AM: We're a music magazine, too, so we have to ask: what music are you currently listening to?
TC: I've been listening to YG's new album. I normally listen to hip hop. King Quell, Billie Eilish and T-Pain's new album, too.
AM: What's next after the showcase at Exchange?
TC: My next official show will be at ShockBoxx on July 13. Since it'll be at a gallery, it will be a lot more immersive. We have a professional body painter and a really talented fashion sketch artist on board for that show. We're all pushing each other out of our comfort zones and doing things we've never done before. I'll also be a vendor at Chocolate and Art at the end of July. That's always a really cool event! I'll be a part of a group show in November, too, and I'm planning to do a more immersive experience for that and show some bigger pieces. I'm really excited for all the upcoming shows!
// photos courtesy of the artist
// View more from The Creator on Instagram.