We had the good fortune of connecting with Jason Toole and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jason, any advice for those thinking about whether to keep going or to give up?
This is always the annoying, self-doubting question in the back of all of our minds when we try to create what we are most passionate about. The end result never comes quickly and often times, even building traction towards our goals, seems stagnate. There are two things I always consider when these thoughts try to get me down; the first being the “why”: If I find myself pursuing something only for the possible rewards that follow, I realize that neither the journey nor the outcome will be very satisfying. It will prove itself to have been an artificial passion, a materialistic desire. Success in such endeavors can often feel worse than failure. The key is to find the thing that calls to you from within, something you would enjoy thanklessly, something that makes you feel complete and validated, regardless of public approval or disgust. If I find myself defending or advocating my work, I try to remind myself that although it is created with a meaning, it is not created with a purpose. It is free to be interpreted as each viewer wishes. The second thing I remind myself to quiet these voices is the follow-up question, Can I think of anyone who has never given up on their dreams… and failed? and I have not found anyone that fits that criteria yet.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My work began many years ago drawing geometric designs to symbolize a specific thought or theory. I find symbols to be a very powerful tool to remind us of who we are, what we believe in and what we hold dear. If you look around, the world of symbols shape us, define us and persuade us. From marketing to religion, a symbol can tell the world more about you than words or pictures. It is this “boiling down” process that drives me. To take an idea and incorporate it’s fundamental concepts into one design. I have recently developed a process of giving my designs a 3 dimensional aspect. This technique is far more time consuming and challenging than my 2 dimensional versions. However, the finished product captures a depth in the design that encourages the viewer to look closer, view from side to side and get a bit more lost in the image. I am grateful to have found a style that is unique and personal. I believe my work is a direct representation of myself. I tend to search for the root of our emotions rather than the direct impulse. I believe there is meaning behind everything, and even the most complicated issues can be traced back to a very rudimentary idea. My process will naturally evolve and become more refined as time goes on and I look forward to every step in this journey.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Brent Smart is a classical artist I have known since elementary school. His work is far more technical and classically refined than my own. He has shared his techniques and inspirations with me throughout the years. Furthermore, him and I have discussed the deepest topics of humanity, spirituality, purpose and drive, and I am beyond thankful to have found a true life-long friend in him. My brother Alex is a mechanical engineer and mathematician that not only formed much of my early impressions of conscience and morality but also introduced me to the geometric patterns that much of my work is based from. Most of all, My loving wife, Liya, she has been the driving factor to believe in the process. To not fall back on safety nets or old habits. To keep pushing forward and realize that all of our individual talents are not to be underestimated nor taking for granted.