Today we’d like to introduce you to Joe Banda.
Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
As far back as I can remember I’ve always had a creative impulse. It first came in the form of primitive doodling in school, and slowly progressed to slightly more advanced (but still primitive) doodles. When I was 10 I started skateboarding, which was my first introduction to outsider art, indie music, tattoos and general weirdness. When I got older my doodles became even more advanced, so much so, that I rarely payed any attention to class and usually ruined my text books by drawing in them. I never really took art seriously until it was time for me to go to college. I threw together a rough portfolio and managed to get accepted into Delaware College of Art and Design. I struggled there for 2 years and received an Associate’s Degree in Fine Art, I then continued my studies at Montserrat College of Art and eventually received my Bachelor’s Degree. Since then I’ve used the guilt of having an art degree as a motivator to keep creating art to this day.
Please tell us about your art.
My main two focuses are drawing and painting. I like to paint on found objects and scraps because there’s so much waste in the world it seems crazy to pay for canvas when there’s such good trash laying around. I also like to draw in sketchbooks and finish them digitally.
My art has always been a gut reaction to whatever I’m feeling at that moment. It’s how I cope with the general stress of my commute, day job, and anxiety. I don’t like sitting still, I constantly feel like I’m wasting time if I’m just watching T.V. or staring at my phone, so I’m always trying to work on something.
If my art had a message it would be that you shouldn’t let the weight of the world stop you from doing what you want to do, be the person you want to be, and do whatever makes you happy.
What do you think is the biggest challenge facing artists today?
I think now is a really interesting time to be an artist. Social media has really connected the entire world and it has had some really positive and negative effects. On one hand it is much easier to get your art out there and have your work exposed on a global scale. This makes it easier to find freelance work, and kickstart personal businesses. On the other hand, it has made art much easier to steal. Bootleggers and rip off artists have entire portfolios to steal from. In addition to that, social media is so saturated with artists that it’s hard to stand out from the crowd or leave a lasting impression on whoever sees your art. So I’d say the biggest struggle as an artist (in my own experience) is to keep creating meaningful work while keeping up with the most relevant technology.
How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
You can find my art in person at Mingo Gallery and Frame in Beverly MA, and Nahcotta Gallery in Portsmouth NH. I have an Instagram account, @jbnda, which I update regularly and I have a website www.joebanda.com which I update once in a while. You can support my work by buying paintings from the galleries I’m in, my web store, or by just sending me an email.
- Website: www.joebanda.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @jbnda
All photos and images by Joe Banda