I first became aware of Tom's work on Red Bubble and was drawn to his image Leap of Faith.  One of my personal mottos has always been “Leap and the net will appear.” So much of my life has been based on the idealism surrounding the leap of faith concept.  I immediately contacted Tom and began talking to him about his images.  We instantly hit it off, completely relating to what the other was creating within our own work, based on personal experiences.  I have always believed that art is an expression of the soul and Tom's work stirs deep emotions within me.  When I began this project, he was one of the first people I approached as a featured artist.  His imagery is sexy, arousing, provocative and thought provoking.  It makes us all question our own morality surrounding how we see ourselves, stripped to our barest essence; exposed, alone, isolated, dealing with identity and addiction

~ Terry Cyr, 2011

My current paintings are somewhat autobiographical, an expression of what I’m working through in my life.  Breaking the Bonds was painted during one of the most difficult times in my recovery when I realized I had to let go of some of my shortcomings. Leaving Paradiseaddresses the question of why I am always looking outside of myself for something that can only be found on the inside, right where my feet are standing.

I paint because it is the only thing I know that I need to do, when my mind is not in the past or the future but in the moment.  Because I feel, I paint.  It is a gift bequeathed me by the Universe which, over the past twenty years, was squandered and ignored.  It is only in these past two years that I have begun to paint again for myself. Painting for me is meditative, cathartic, and emotional. I truly feel I am blessed to have this venue for expression. If I can connect with even one person through my painting, I am happy.

All of my paintings at the moment are figurative.  I love the male form and I love conveying a quiet vulnerability and masculinity at the same time.  The paintings are usually a compilation of photographs that I shoot and then put together using this hand with that arm or that head. The same can be said of the concept of the paintings. They are figurative paintings but I try to transfer an emotion or a stage of my spiritual growth onto the canvas.  Layer by layer, I apply acrylic house paint and glaze, building references to the emotion I am trying to express. In spite of its personal nature, my work relays a struggle with life's trials and burdens that is universally felt and understood.

With each painting I attempt to challenge myself with lighting and with exaggerated, twisting poses that appear disturbing without being offensive.  Truly I want to tell a story, to connect with the viewer. Isn't that what every artist wants? Eventually, I would like to pull back on the realism and become a bit more surreal. combining both approaches to bring the story to another level.

I have been a decorative painter in the New England area for twenty years – painting other people’s visions, creating decorated spaces, with paint. It has only been within this past year that I have returned to painting for the joy of it, for myself.  Painting for myself on canvas has been a gift I cannot explain and don’t feel the need to. I am blessed to be able to do these paintings and work through the pain that I have insulated myself from until this year. As a result of painting for years on a large scale for viewing from a distance, I truly enjoy creating the smaller scale works.  I love immersing myself in the details, savoring the time I can spend on each piece, and creating the concept.  A carryover from my years as a design artist is that I still paint with regular house paint.

Link to Tom on facebook

Link to Tom's website

Link to Tom's work on Red Bubble