1) Tell us about your Buck.
My buck is a caricature of Chef Art Smith. He's dressed in his signature navy chef's coat with the Southern Art logo on the back and the logo for his charity, Common Threads, on the sleeve. He also wears a white chef's hat and holds one of Art Smith's famous red velvet cakes.
2) What inspired you to approach your Buck this way?
From the beginning, Art wanted to do a caricature of himself that would stand outside his restaurant, . When we met to discuss painting the buck, I took pictures of everything from the yellow and blue stripes on his collar to the orange shoelaces on his sneakers. We wanted to get it as close to Art's "uniform" as possible. We also wanted the buck to hold something on the menu that was recognizable, so we decided on the 24-layer red velvet cake.
3) In general, where do you find the inspiration for your art?
I am an illustrator, so most of my artwork goes on greeting cards, invitations and the occasional print ad. Lately I've been illustrating quite a few save-the-dates for friends who are getting married. For these, I ask them to send me a few photographs and use those when I am creating the illustration.
4) How did you become an artist?
I've been drawing and painting for as long as I can remember, but I got my formal training as an illustration major at the Savannah College of Art and Design. Like a lot of artists, I have a full-time job, so my illustration work is more like a paid hobby.
5) Is there anything else you'd like to share with Buckhead Patch readers?
When Donna Kain asked me if I wanted to paint a 9 foot tall ceramic buck for Bucks on the Street, I had serious doubts because I'd never painted anything close to this size and scale. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized I'd be crazy NOT to do it. I had a blast painting the buck, and it makes me smile every time I see it. I feel like it's a great way to leave my stamp on Atlanta.
The is the latest in a series of Buckhead Patch conversations with the creators of the "Buck" statues stationed around the neighborhood. Do you know other creative people in Buckhead who deserve to be profiled? Email us with the details!