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“I wasn’t always an artist. In fact, I was a journeyman bookkeeper when I almost kicked the bucket from Crohn’s disease back in the mid 80’s. Thankfully, I didn’t, and when I woke up in the hospital I told everyone I knew that the bookkeeper was dead after all – but in his place was a man who was going to become a successful artist. They though I was nuts. I wasn’t. Two years later, I started the Coyote series. My inspiration was a Joni Mitchell song “Coyote”. At the time I was 26, a dirt poor billboard painter. In fact, I couldn’t even afford a shower curtain to serve as a wedding present for two good friends. I figured they might like one of my Coyote drawings so I did a romantic one and took it there – the people at the wedding went nuts! Well, you know how these things go – somebody knew somebody who knew somebody in the art business, and within a year my art was being sold in galleries across the country.
“Many years ago someone asked me my favorite thing about the coyotes, and I said “They celebrate life. Sometimes life kicks them around, but they embrace it just the same. Heartaches, bad breaks, job problems, job triumphs, true love, rotten luck, vast fortune. Good or bad, they celebrate, I like that.
“The coyote’s are now in their second decade. The first was a hard, fun, nutty decade of dogs in suits, and the second promises to be that and more. For any budding artists out there seeking my advice, I would simply say this: never give up, outwork everyone else, and don’t be afraid to take risks. In this way, I feel I follow the paths of the greats, even if I am painting Coyotes in suits. Your vehicle may be the Oscar Meyer Weinermobile, it doesn’t mean your destination can’t be a great one.”