I grew up in the town of Haverstraw, NY. I am first generation American on my father’s side of the family and second on my mother’s side. Art was not encouraged in my family, nor was it discouraged. The truth is…my generation did not receive a lot of input and/or instruction from our families. At least, we did not in our working class town. At six years of age, I discovered art through the reading and drawing of comic books. This love for comic books led me to the copying and creating of my own superheroes. I soon began to discover the little tricks of drawing. I recognized negative space at an early age. This allowed me to produce a pretty good likeness to whatever it was I was drawing. I received positive reinforcement from my fellow elementary students who would ask me to draw things for them.
Later, I went on to college and decided I would major in Psychology. I took a drawing class on a whim. I remember standing in front of our Humanities building. I was listening to a group of art students speaking about art. They said: “Art is my life!” I thought, “Yeah, right…that old cliché.” I really did not understand. Suddenly, I started to take more art classes. In each of these art classes, I would be the first one there and the last one to leave. Now I began to understand what these students were talking about. For me, it was good-bye to Psychology and hello to Art.

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