We had the good fortune of connecting with Ray Brown and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ray, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
Pursuing a career as an artist was born of a passion for craft and problem solving. Creativity is, to my mind, problem solving. One might have a goal and is given a set of parameters or constraints. Creativity is just navigating those constraints and parameters as deftly, beautifully, efficiently and perhaps unconventionally as possible to arrive at ones goal. As a visual artist my goal is to present my point of view within the self imposed parameters of medium, size, subject matter, cost, technique etc. as artfully as possible. Which then speaks to craft. The ability to hone ones skills in their chosen media to such a point that the manner of production is in itself intrinsic to its worth. In my case drawing. I want to be so skilled at the act of drawing that my goal of communicating my point of view through drawing is made stronger, clearer, and more eloquent by the virtuosity of my craft. While these ideals of craft and problem solving can be employed in other endeavors, I have found a career in art, both commercial and personal, the purest employment of these ideals.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I started my career working commercially creating visual communications for the needs of others. Making images to satisfy the visions of others using their parameters, constraints, and opinions to shape the imagery. Commercial work was rewarding and fulfilling and had it’s own special challenge in trying to manage and the decipher the desires of a client. Always a tall task. After working for others for a decade I took a leap and began my my career as a fine artist. That is to say, communicating my own particular point view to the world. Creating work unfettered by constraints or parameters imposed by clients would seemingly be a dream come true. Making images without guidelines, however, proved difficult. When one has nothing to constrain ones creativity the possibilities can seem limitless. Which for some may be fantastic. I, however, found it daunting and difficult to focus and communicate my message with confidence. Their were too many options! Without a confining framework I would second guess my decisions because there were many possible solutions. I realized that setting parameters for myself would help provide a framework on which I could create confidently. The self imposed parameters would help to make clear the best possible way to communicate my point of view. Over the last fifteen years and continuing into the future my career has been and will be a continual effort in visually encapsulating my vision of the world and building a framework to enable me to communicate that vision effectively and impact fully to all who will bother to look.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I would take them to the beaches and mountains and those communities which are scattered up and down the coast and in the mountains. We would partake from the local fare for food and entertain ourselves with the beauty, splendor, and culture that is Southern California.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My wife, Dr. Maria Corrada, who’s support and success in her own field has allowed me to pursue what has not always been a lucrative albeit fulfilling career choice. And fellow artist, Terry Miller, who’s mentorship has guided me through what were for me the uncharted waters of a career in art.
Artwork by Ray Brown