Now that Heather has had a chance to introduce herself, I will take a swing at it. I am Aaron, the “Captain” part of Captain Wells. The origins of that nickname is a long (and old) story that I’m not sure many people remember at this point. Though there are a significant number of people from college who don’t know my actual name, and just knew me as Captain.
When Heather and I decided to start displaying and selling art together, it didn’t take long to come up with the name Captain Wells Studios to pay homage to our college days as the basis for where we are today. I can speak for the both of us when I say that college really set the stage for the type of work we are both doing today (even if it was done more out of spite than instruction from our professors).
As for me, I have been doodling, drawing, paintings, etc. since a very early age. Both my parents have been doing creative things since before I can remember. I think back to long evenings in the garage helping dad cut things out of wood or building furniture and I can still remember mom painting small pieces for one of their projects. I even had to go with them to various craft shows either to help sell the product, or just because it was what we did. From that, I saw all forms of creativity that really piqued my interest in creating things with my own hands. From there I was hooked.
In High School, I had a great Art Teacher in that he allowed me to explore the Art styles that I wanted with a lot of encouragement and little doubt. He saw that I was passionate about art and helped my further skills. Looking back, the stuff I created back then was kind of awful. I get that I was just starting out and that the stuff I do today with many more years of practice should be better, but still, I don’t want to show anyone the pieces I did back then (except for maybe a couple of them).
Once I got in to an Art program in college, I saw my skills and my passion really take off. With the ability to study and practice many more styles and mediums that I had never heard of before, let alone tried out. To this day, there are several mediums and techniques that I learned in college that I hope to get back to some day.
The most influential Art instructor I have ever had was Professor Anderson. At first, I thought he was just a mean old grump that enjoyed making students feel bad about their work. What I have grown to learn is that he had high expectations for us and wouldn’t settle for less. I owe my continued passion to him and those expectations. Anderson introduced me to the hard-edge style of Roy Lichtenstein and Joseph Albers and from there I just took off. Hard-Edge ended up being mostly what I focused on in college and was a major part of my senior exhibition.
Through the years, I have moved away from hard-edge painting and tried out several mediums and styles just trying to find “my style”. Every so often, I will find a style that I like and I will go with it for awhile until I get bored and start looking again. Right now, I am working a lot with Charcoal Pencils and I am loving it. In fact, some of my blog posts coming up will be about Charcoal techniques and products.
I am currently a High School Art Instructor which allows me to explore many mediums and techniques and claim they are research for class. I hope to be able to use the same information I give my students to write blog posts for you guys. I know this post was a little long but if you have read this far, thank you for allowing my to tell you a little bit about myself. There is a lot more I can say about who I am and why I do what I do, but this is enough for now. Maybe I will get in to it more later.