We had the good fortune of connecting with Paul Morris and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Paul, is your business focused on helping the community? If so, how?
I am fortunate that I have been able to sell art pieces that have gone to various destinations all over the world, from Norway and Australia to Japan and Brazil. In this increasingly fractured and tumultuous world, I would like to think that the bridges that I have fashioned out of paint and paper will last longer and have a more positive social impact than walls made of concrete and destructive exchanges composed of lead and steel. Establishing contacts across this tiny globe of ours leads to greater understanding and cooperation. Most of my art pieces feature musicians as their subject. There is no greater universal language than that of music. In a more direct way, I have sold pieces whose proceeds have helped fund various important efforts, such as aiding those afflicted by Hurricane Maria and by the wildfires in Australia, and most recently towards groups vulnerable to hunger during the coronavirus crisis. Artists can do their part as “secondary responders” and help to alleviate pain and suffering in the world. No one needs to be on the sidelines.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Like many artists, I have developed my skills and honed in on a specific style and subject matter through much trial and error. When I think back on how many years separate the time when I first started taking art seriously as a career path and the present day, I think of all of the trips to art and hardware stores for supplies, all of the paint-based spills and messes, all of the frustrating false starts and dead ends. I am glad the journey has not been easy, because if it had been, I would not have been tested and challenged over the course of many years. Every artist needs to put in an apprenticeship, whether it is self-guided or not. I did not always plan to become a full-time artist. My life began with sketching and drawing incessantly, and then evolved into wanting to become a medievalist and historian, and then turning once more to sketching and drawing incessantly from 2002 on. I have found that it has been very effective to scale my ambitions down to daily and weekly micro-goals. What do I want to accomplish today? What about this week? If I only aim for the big picture goals, I will never take the first step before being crushed by a wave of despair. Every artist is an ant pushing a breadcrumb across an empty plain, a vast canvas that only he or she can fill over time. My art consists mainly of ink and watercolor pieces depicting musicians playing orchestral instruments such as the bassoon and cor anglais, to jazz bands playing the trumpet and the double bass, to performers playing electronic instruments such as the theremin and the ondes Martenot, to ensembles playing instruments from all over the world, from the güiro of Latin America to the bodhrán of Ireland. I enjoy learning about instruments that I have never heard of before and painting them. It is also an honor and joy for me to create commissioned art pieces depicting duets composed of couples, families of instrumentalists, and musical ensembles large and small, all of whom want to be immortalized in art form.

Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
Los Angeles has a lot to offer! As a global center of arts, food, and culture, the Los Angeles area offers a wide variety of distinct districts that always offer an ever-changing experience to the visitor and resident. A good place to start the day would be on Main Street in Downtown El Segundo. It has a nice, small town feel, and many great places to get coffee and brunch/lunch. For a more beach-centered experience, I would then take visitors to the Redondo Beach Pier or the famous Santa Monica Pier. Both offer a vibrant, truly Californian experience, with lots of opportunities for great photos and fun. For arts and culture, I would head over to the Getty Center, which offers a great view of the entire city and a wide variety of artistic treasures, or to the Getty Villa, which will make you feel as if you have traveled back in time to antiquity while still being able to gaze upon the Pacific Ocean. Another great option is to visit the galleries at LACMA and the adjacent La Brea Tar Pits, which once trapped and entombed scimitar-toothed cats, dire wolves, American camels, and giant short-faced bears. For a unique nighttime experience, I would head over to Downtown Culver City, which has a lot of great bars and restaurants, from the Auld Fella Irish pub to the historic Culver Hotel. Another favorite watering hole is Los Angeles Ale Works, a brewery and tasting room in Hawthorne. There is so much to see and do!

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Books, television, and music have of course provided inspiration to me over the course of my life, but creative stimulation derived solely from other media would produce staler, less vibrant works. James Joyce called his brother Stanislaus his “whetstone.” Through the process of sharing his ideas with Stanislaus, Joyce was able to refine his ideas and fashion them into the immortal works we know today. That form of brotherly love and encouragement was what Joyce needed to move forward. For my part, my “whetstones” have been my wife Kristen and my parents. A shout-out definitely goes to Kristen, who never asks “Why?” but always “Why not?” Her blessings, love, comfort, and encouragement have propelled me forward through the rocky and plentiful shoals of self-doubt, and towards countless ink and watercolor art pieces and projects such as my Dizygotic Tarot Deck. I am a more confident artist because of her, and hopefully a better person. My parents, who are both teachers, and incredibly erudite, also deserve a shout-out. They combine the knowledge, skills, and powers of all Nine Muses. My childhood home was always filled with books, music, and travel plans thanks to them; my parents provided a sustaining love and respect for culture. Their honest opinion is something I always seek; their stamp of approval is more valuable to me than a bucket filled with gold. I hope I can make these muses of mine proud.

Website: www.worldofpollux.com
Instagram: paulmorrispollux
Twitter: https://twitter.com/PolluxPmorris
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/worldofpollux

Image Credits
Artwork by Pollux (Paul Morris)