An impossible series of occurrences led me to this path. This all began in northeastern Pennsylvania, where I still live. While in college for sustainable agriculture I sustained a shoulder injury and hearing disorder. My mind and body being a bit tattered, I reconsidered life and started studying classical Russian drawing and painting with Vyacheslav Shevchenko. Later, I attended the local community college for visual arts where my eccentric artist uncle, who has been taking classes there for over 13 years, told me about a former teacher of the college living up the mountains who was a master tromp l’oeil painter. Intrigued, I followed up on this lead which led me to the front door of the ÁNI Art Academy. In early 2012 Anthony accepted me as his apprentice where I continue to hone my skills under his guidance. Art is my most natural primal instinct. My earliest memory I can recall is of me sketching, it was a drawing of a lion if you must know. When I began serious training as an artist my perceptions began to drastically change. This is around the time when I realized I wanted to paint for the rest of my life. I was becoming more aware of the ordinary beauty that always surrounds me which I continually overlook. That year when spring blossomed, I was seeing an entirely new world and realizing how transient the environment is. Art gives me a sense of purpose. It is what truly matters. When creating I fall into a state of rapture becoming mesmerized by the lights, shadows, reflexes, and the infinite subtleties of color. I become obsessed with attempting to recreate what lies before me. This intense focus and concentration push me into a state of flow. I disappear and become what I am drawing. In a more sentimental aspect, art also gives me something to hold on to. It strengthens my memories against an ever-receding past. Sure, I could take a photograph, but when I draw or paint something it becomes engraved into my brain as I study every millimeter of it. I make something where there was once a void of blank nothingness. I can never properly express myself with words, so symbols speak for me. With my pictures, I can even change the way they momentarily see things and maybe hypnotize the viewer, even if only for just a second.