The best way I’ve ever known how to connect with people was through stories. I grew up in rural Illinois, in a place where people either learn to tell themselves stories or kill themselves. I saw it happen again and again; I saw the joy on my friends’ faces when we watched movies, talked comics, played video games. And, eventually, I realized I could make those things.
I got my love of genre film from my dad. Star Wars, Blade Runner, so on. My mom introduced me to the films of Hollywood’s Second Golden Age, which have probably been more influential for me. Movies such as The Godfather and Bonnie and Clyde. It was when I saw, thanks to the film’s comic book connections, Chasing Amy that I first felt the director pouring themselves into the work. So I decided to make movies, to talk about love and relationships they way those films continue to.
I left Illinois to come to grad school, looking to explore narrative theory, experimental art, and other media. I’ve also had to question and create who I am, what I stand for, and what I want out of life. Which isn’t atypical, but I had convinced myself I was pretty much a straight man. I’ve pretty much processed that, but will probably have to do so again. My art is very much a part of that process, and I’m glad to share it with my audiences.