Tag Archives: acrylic paint

I Look Cool Doing It

"I Look Cool Doing It." 2/20/14. Acrylic paint. 18x24".
“I Look Cool Doing It.” 2/20/14. Acrylic paint. 18×24″.

I used to care about stuff. These days, whenever I hear someone railing on about how this or that is bullshit or a scam or [whatever], I just kinda roll my eyes. “Get some real problems,” I’ll think. “Isn’t there anything going on in your own life worth being concerned about?” I’ve only got so much emotional capital and I’m definitely not investing it in some shit that has zero bearing on my day-to-day. And (of course) I’ve got my own principles, but I’m not about to start preaching to other people about what they ought to support, not support, believe, or not believe. Again – I GOT ENOUGH GOING ON RIGHT HERE. I don’t have the time or energy to waste on trying to change or influence somebody else. Besides, I’m pretty sure that the most positive effect I’ve ever had on the world has been through my art and my writing, which I do for my own benefit but which seems to positively impact other people as an added bonus.

On another note: I’VE BEEN FUCKING A LOT LATELY. I’m getting a lot of attention from girls. It’s probably going to my head a little bit. There are still plenty of times when I’ll catch a glimpse of my reflection and get pretty bummed out about the way that I look but for the most part I’m pretty pleased with myself these days.

I painted this while I was selling prints at the opening of a new art space in St. Augustine. It’s been a really long time since I spent less than ten hours on a painting, but I’m pretty sure I wrapped this one up within an hour or so. If I’m being honest, it was half expressive art and half “hey, girls! look at me! come talk to me!” Even still, I’m pretty happy with it.

I chose to use only the second half of my caption as the title because (by itself) it’s sexually suggestive but silly. That line underneath the body was originally meant just to distinguish one leg from the other but I left it as is ‘cause it kinda looks like it’s meant to be a dick. That works too.


This painting is already up as part up my exhibit at Burrito Gallery in Jacksonville, FL. By tomorrow afternoon, it’ll also be available as a 12×16″ print.

Speaking of prints, I set up at Rain Dogs to sell last night (thanks to my buddy, Mike, who does art under the banner of Hood Rat Shit). I just found out that Chris Wollard and Jon Snodgrass are playing there tonight, so I might try to go back and do the same. Here are some photos from last night though.

“Art by Sammy thrashLife. Buy something or don’t. I live in a minivan – NOTHING MATTERS.”
Gauging by the Facebook/Instagram reaction, it seems that I find this sign to be FAR MORE HILARIOUS than most people do.

Snarkiness, pride, self-deprecation, vanity, whatever… all that shit aside – I really do have fun. And I really am grateful. I couldn’t ask for anything more than what I’ve got. And when I think about all the people that have been so supportive of me recently – personally or in just buying my work – it really is humbling. I feel like I’m in a pretty good state of being, even if it is a delicate balancing act sometimes.

Amazon Wishlist

One of my goals in 2014 is to go to the dentist. I was looking into low cost options last night and I found a “mobile dental ministry”  that operates out of an RV with a mission to “provide caring dental service and a Christian witness.” I get what they’re saying but – the way that’s worded – it’s pretty funny.

Later in the night, I was really bumming out about my weight and, more generally, my physical appearance. I’m always embarrassed to acknowledge that sort of thing but… that’s what’s real. It had been a full week since I painted anything new and I knew that’s what I needed to do to get my head right.

"Amazon Wishlist." 12/19/13. Acryic paint and food coloring. 18x24".
12/19/13. Acrylic paint and food coloring. 18×24″.

So here’s my newest painting, which says: “I need 2 things – THE SHIT SCRAPED OFF MY TEETH and A CHRISTIAN WITNESS.” I’m calling it “Amazon Wishlist.”

In the bottom left corner, it also says: “probably less of a joke than I want it to be.” What I mean by that… I couldn’t be less interested in someone trying to convert me, and I’ve never found any comfort in a church, but I have found it in a few Christians. They were warm – kind in a way that a lot of people aren’t. So while you’re not gonna find me knocking on doors for Jesus anytime soon, a Christian witness just might not be the worst thing in the world.

But that doesn’t mean I’m not still gonna be a snarky little butthole and make a joke out of it. It’s whatever. I’m a smartass but I also let my guard down to acknowledge these thoroughly uncool thoughts and feelings (consequently opening myself up to ridicule) so…

It’s cool.


  • 12×16″ prints of Amazon Wishlist are available in my webstore.
  • Contact me if you’re interested in purchasing the original, 18×24″ painting.

Give Me Money and Praise

"Give Me Money and Praise." 2/24/13. Acrylic paint and ink on cardboard. 14x6".
“Give Me Money and Praise.” 2/24/13. Acrylic paint and ink on cardboard. 14×6″.

I made this on the day that I first tried to sell my artwork. It’s kind of embarrassing. Beneath the bolder caption  is some less legible text: “Fill your arms with paint. Sorry. I fill my arms with paint. Or I want to anyway. Um. Metaphorically. This thing is kind of cool. I guess it is what I thought it’d be. I feel selfish though. Like I’m not watching the other bands.”

Translation: Dumb phrase that sounds poetic. Apology for not speaking in the first person (as we’re taught in treatment). Analogy about using artwork in place of heroin to manage my anxiety. Craft Fest [in St. Pete] is kind of cool and about what I expected it to be. I haven’t looked at anything any of the other people are selling at their tables and I feel guilty in the same way I might if I were playing a show and didn’t go inside to watch any of the bands before/after my own.

I felt weird about all of that so I decided to just write out my bluntest, most human feelings on top of it: “Give me money and praise and I’ll give you this.”

"Beachtown Graffiti." 2/14/13. Mixed media. 33x13".

Fun facts: On that first day, I did sell a few pieces: Why I Fail, Clarity, and – my favorite at the time – Beachtown Grafitti. A few others too. I do okay, huh?


Status Update (December 12, 2013)

“Snowflakes Anonymous.” 11/22/13. Acrylic, watercolor, and spray paints, food coloring, markers, pen, resin sand, cardboard and EBT card – on 24×30″ stretched canvas.

Alex and I went to go see the “Everything is Terrible” holiday show at Sun-Ray tonight. When we walked out of the theater, there was a big gaping hole on the wall where one of my paintings once hung. I asked what happened and was handed an envelope with more money in it than I’ve ever been given for a single painting. Somebody bought it right on the spot and gave instructions to tell me that I’m “an international artist now” because it’s going in their home in Paris. So that’s pretty fucking awesome. And (like Beachtown Grafitti) – at the time of this one’s sale – it was also my favorite: Snowflakes Anonymous.

I’m really wrapped up in a “project” right now that’s costing me a lot of money and won’t pay anything (it’s not for me – it’s for some people that I care about). I was stressing about it earlier today but just told myself that it’s a nice thing to do and I don’t need to get all nervous because I like to believe that things will always work out when I’m making good, positive choices. And then this happened tonight so… Life’s kinda cool, right?


Here’s a song that’s rad as fuck.


Numbered, signed, and sealed Give Me Money and Praise prints are available in my webstore. If you’re interested in purchasing the original, get in touch.

Shit’s Perfect

"Shit's Perfect." 2/27/13. Acrylic paint. 12½x4”.
“Shit’s Perfect.” 2/27/13. Acrylic paint. 12½x4”.

One of the assignments given at Tranquil Shores is to make something representative of your higher power. Back in February, somebody tipped me off that there was a huge foamboard by the dumpster. I went to check it out and found it captioned (in stick-on letters), “My Higher Power.” I wouldn’t normally think anything of somebody tossing some project but – in this case… this person’s higher power was in the garbage. This person’s higher power was garbage. How great is that?

Anyway, I cut it up for “canvas” and over the course of the next couple weeks made a few new pieces by painting over the photos and other crap they had glued to it.

Aside from something I made in September 2012 that’s covered in song lyrics, this is the only thing I’ve ever made with text that  I knowingly stole from somewhere else. (It’s from the chorus of “Mobbed By the 3s” by Toys That Kill). There’s just something about the phrase “shit’s perfect” that’s – well – perfect.

‘Cause it is perfect. Everything is. Good shit, bad shit, even literal shit – it’s all exactly as it’s supposed to be. And – on the other side of the coin – it just sounds snarky as fuck. Like, “Oh yeah, of course – shit’s perfect.

And who doesn’t love some snarky bullshit?

Tola’s Approach to Demons

"Tola's Approach to Demons." 7/21/13. Acrylic paint and ink. 16x20".
“Tola’s Approach to Demons.” 7/21/13. Acrylic paint and ink. 16×20″.

The text at upper left:
“That was amazing,” Vincent said. “How do you feel?”
“Like garbage.”
I went back out on the dock with Tola. We sat out there for the rest of the night.
“I don’t really mind demons,” he told me. “So long as they’re not actively trying to fuck my shit up, I just keep my distance and everything is cool.”


Tola had been drinking and I don’t know exactly what he meant when he said “demons,” but it made sense to me either way. Everything he said to me that night made a lot of sense. And meant a lot to me. That conversation was exactly what I needed that night.

I don’t believe in evil. I don’t believe that there’s such a thing as bad people. I have to think that way ’cause if I’m wrong, then I’m most certainly evil – I’m definitely a bad person.

But I try really hard. So I give other people the benefit of the doubt. If someone does something fucked up, I choose to believe that they’re doing their best. (Their best just happens to be pretty terrible relative to average/acceptable standards). I try to keep that in mind whether we’re talking about some asshole on the sidewalk or someone like that kid that shot up Sandy Hook. It’s hard to give everyone that credit – that empathy – but I try. In return, I hope to get the same.

With all of that said, some people are not entirely well. (I should know; often enough, I’m one of them). And if you play with fire… if you fuck with a demon … that demon is going to burn you alive. Nothing good ever comes from it. When it comes to people who are sick – people that aren’t even interested in being well – stay the fuck away. This is a lesson I have learned the hard way, but am still having a little trouble applying.

I need to learn to more closely adhere to “Tola’s approach to demons.”


Everything you just read was written right after painting this. It was two days after I wrapped on “No Real Than You Are.”

July 4th (the night referenced in the piece) was my first night of filming. In the hour or so before we actually shot the scene, my co-star and I were not getting along. In fact, we weren’t even speaking to one another. And this scene we had to film – let me put it this way: the director told us that it was the scene in which it was most important for the audience to really see just how in love these characters were with one another. Suffice to say, I was not feeling any love for this girl on that evening and I’m pretty certain her feelings toward me were about the same. In hindsight, she was probably a scapegoat, but that didn’t change my feelings in the moment.

I still haven’t seen the footage, but – from what I’m told – we pulled it off. It took everything I had in me to not say FUCK THIS and just walk away from the set and quit. I was miserable and I was angry. But I didn’t walk away. I shook my shitty feelings the fuck out of my body and for [however long we filmed that night] I played and pretended and made myself alright. If that footage is at all believable, then I gave one fuck of a performance. More of a performance than anyone watching would ever realize. As soon as the director said “cut” though, I fell right back into it. Suppression and healing are two very different things. I can’t actually force myself to be okay. I don’t think anyone can. “Holding it together” and “getting it together” are two very different things. Real healing takes a lot of work. I think that this painting was one step of a walk in the right direction though.


During the month I spent working on “No Real Than You Are” (and scooting around Sarasota on my little thrashBike) I listened almost exclusively to the songs on a playlist that I made shortly after getting into town. The first song on the playlist isn’t online anywhere, so here’s the second. “Eviction Notice” by Riverboat Gamblers.


Signed and numbered 12×15″ prints of “Tola’s Approach to Demons” are available in my webstore.

Hit me up if you’re interested in purchasing the original piece.