Original Art: An Almost Wordless Story


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A lot of non-dedicated spaces exist as art galleries. Here in my current hometown of Mansfield, OH, our coffee shop & indie bookstore continuously host art by local artists. That says something about this area, I believe.

Some friends of mine own a salon downtown. These same guys have, for a while now, been patrons-of-sorts. They regularly encourage me, offer feedback on my creations & pass art supplies & knowledge my way. I’m so grateful.

During this past holiday season, I displayed some paintings & handmade ornaments in their shop. That morphed into an idea: What if they allowed me to show in their nontraditional space? Treat it like an art gallery? As in, regularly change out my pieces, say, once per month for all of 2019?

This would keep me creating on deadline. Structure’s good sometimes. A series of fresh pieces on a monthly basis.

My friends readily & whole-heartedly agreed. (It could be that they’ve been nudging me to show my pieces there for a while now…)

Their business caters to an existing clientele. It’s not exactly a public space. For a wider audience, I figured I’d share my pieces here each month. That’s another way to hold myself accountable to this New Year’s commitment. Also a solid way to revive this site I’ve been aggressively neglecting.

I reckon another part in sharing this is to challenge other artists. No official “Art Gallery” where you live? Or maybe there are such galleries, but, for whatever reason, they’re not a good fit for your art?

Stretch your perspective; get creative. That is, after all, something you’re great at.

Shoot, hang your pieces on a wall in your own home, snaps pics & post them online. Blogs are free. I’m starting to remember this fact. This very blog scored me the sell of a sculpture to Fox Studios & an amazing commission via a design firm in Seattle for a project in South Korea. I’ve even sold a few pieces thanks to simply posting pics on my Facebook page. Dude, unexpected. And easy.

Assuming I keep this commitment throughout the year (you know how fickle/flaky us artists can be sometimes), a range of subjects & styles will spill out. Ya know how some artists have a particular style, technique, media, what have you? Yeah, not me. All depends on what materials I have available, what I feel I need to express/purge through my art at any given moment, whatever inspiration comes.

I fought this niggling for years. Felt a need to nail my style down, focus, find that singular visual vocabulary that’s identifiably me. Well, at some point here recently, I kinda got over that. Somewhere in all my pieces, there’s my metaphorical fingerprint, right?

I’m betting you’ve got one, too.

If you like anything you see, let me know.

I hope to see your work. I also hope to hear your ideas of how artists can get their work out there in creative ways.

If we don’t do it for ourselves, who will?

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Mustard Sandwich No. 20190110


mustard sandwich 20190110 (22)

Artist Eating A Mustard Sandwich

via Mustard Sandwich No. 20190110

I wrote that ^ piece about how us creative folk (artists, writers, etc) are generally pretty okay with not starving.

I’ve tried many, many times. It’s impossible to eat exposure.

We Stand With Standing Rock


So, I performed some poetry etc in support of Standing Rock.
I happened to be wearing a bird mask for part of it.

#waterislife #allthesparrowsare1

Voices from the Borderlands

15420897_10154356588862830_684050273966762102_nIn late July, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers stating their concern that a pipeline slated to be built encroached upon ancestral lands.


It’s a five dollar donation to get in the doors of the Standing Rock Solidarity Benefit show, to be enveloped in the warmth, the glow, the murmur of conversations cut frequently by loud laughter. It looks like someone’s family reunion with folding chairs and cheap plastic table cloths, a buffet set-up with six donated Two Cousin’s Gut Buster pizzas and cheap booze. As the place slowly fills with people, the room becomes a beacon in the cold night, a bright light in a row of dim buildings, a convention of friends new and old, setting the stage for solidarity.
September 4th, Dakota Access begins clearing ground for the pipeline, bulldozing over sacred sites and burials. Protesters are attacked…

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Pronouncement: An Invocation for the Standing Rock Benefit Concert, Mansfield, Ohio, December 9, 2016


Pronouncement   who speaks who speaks   who speaks who speaks   who speaks who speaks   the hollow-cheeked mother of winter is pulling her gray cloak across the sky is pulling h…

Source: Pronouncement: An Invocation for the Standing Rock Benefit Concert, Mansfield, Ohio, December 9, 2016

Family Historian – Interactive Map


This is probably gonna seem a little bit weird.

I’m creating an online, interactive map for my family. The plan is to include places we’ve lived, cemeteries where folks are buried, and other landmarks important to our family & my personal mythology.

Well, Google Maps requires a public URL to link pics to the map markers.
This is my first post, which will serve as that photo library for Google Maps to access.

These photos (and videos?) were captured during my recent 9-day trip to Johnston County, NC between Jan 26, 2016 & Feb 3, 2016.

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I’ll be working on the map for a while.

A big part of this is deciphering my feverishly scribble notes from my Aunt Joyce (who feels more like a grandma, or a great-aunt, since she raised my Mama & her 4 siblings after both their parents died) as she drove us around the backwoods & told stories. I’m also rewatching the videos I recorded along the way to catch the details (locations, chronology, etc) I missed in the moment.

Here’s a link to the map, still in its seedling stage:
Pope Family Map