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  April 2014
volume 11 number 1
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  Mauricio Alejandro Ramos
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Mauricio Alejandro Ramos April 2014


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Portrait of an Artist's Evolution     My name is Mauricio Alejandro Ramos. My art name is Paradoxius. Art certainly has always been a part of my life. Since I was very young, the definition of art, to me, is simply expressing and exercising one's energetic will and imagination into some sort of medium. So, even the act of play for a child is art.     As far back as I can remember, I was always playing.I played with all kinds of toys; Legos, action figures, and even sticks. I would imagine great adventures. I would dive so deeply into the toys that I would become many different characters, and express many different types of feelings; greatness; terror, love, joy, and excitement. I remember my adrenaline would explode as I played with my toys. I would also play in the hills. My father always chose homes close to nature. I grew up in Riverside County, CA, in Perris, and Homeland, out in the valley like nature. The weather was very hot, or cold, and very dry.     It was a exciting land for me as a child. I would often find sticks, and imagine the bushes and trees were monsters. I would imagine myself to be all my heroes put together. I liked the feeling of being a hero that possessed all the powers and weapons I could imagine! I would get all the powers and skills of all my favorite Hero's from video game characters like Mega Man, and Link from Zelda. I would become comic book heroes like Spider-Man, and Cyclops from the X-men. I played so deeply that all this creative energy never truly left my heart, but it did almost die out as soon as I reached puberty.     So far, adolescence was the hardest time of my life. I was religiously restricted. As a child it didn't bother me much, but as I grew up I was not allowed to have a girlfriend. I wasn't allowed to play with paint ball guns or anything dangerous like dirt bikes. I couldn't celebrate holidays, or my birthday. I wasn't even allowed to spike my hair. I was so restricted that when I entered high school I was so afraid of being myself. I grew timid.     High school presented me with a great mixture of problems. When I reached the age of 16, I became more rebellious. My parents began to give up on restricting me. I hung out with the crazy punk skater kids, and the popular kids. I started doing drugs; marijuana, cocaine, and psychedelics. I drank, had sex with girls, and went to parties. I had fun, but in the end, I got into trouble with the law. I ended up getting a probation officer who sent me to a prisons tour, which depressed me and my family. So, when I graduated high school, I decided to leave behind all the drama, depression, and shady, so-called friends. I left to my uncle's home in Long Beach, CA, to pursue my education at the Art Institute of Hollywood.     Between the ages of 16-18, I found god outside the walls of Christianity. I was raised as a Jehovah's Witness. I knew divinity existed deep In my heart. I began to explore Buddhism, meditation, Western, and Chinese Astrology. I began to get into the esoteric side of life, especially when I got into psychedelics. This became an exciting time of self-exploration and discovery. I found one the greatest inspirations of my life; the mystic art, and writings of Alex Grey. His work, and the combination of my psychedelic drug consumption, opened me up to a new drive. I awoke to the realization of a entire new world! Grey reminded me how much I truly enjoy my soul, and how much I enjoy expressing My Self. I made it my mission to understand Grey's work, and his philosophy. I tried to learn as much as I could. I watched You Tube videos on esoteric artwork. I found a video that was really interesting. Unfortunately, I can't find it anymore. It was a short video of this man who taught one how to use the method of drawing as a form of meditation, how to silent one's critical, constant chattering mind, and just breath and be present in the moment. You begin to see, but truly see... as you draw what's in front of you. In the video he made references to a book that inspired him to practice the discipline. The book was called The Zen of Seeing: Drawing and Seeing as a Meditation by Frederick Franck; a beautiful book I truly recommend to anyone who wants to strengthen one's harmony with their attention, sight, feelings, hand, and pen. It's a great way to see your own results of meditation on a canvas. The more detailed and accurate your drawings become, the better your personal meditation becomes. The man in the video added this method to his practice, but also applied it to the creation of one's unique abstract style. Hence, my Psychedelic Symbiotic Style was born!     At first, I only used this method to meditate, clear my mind, and fears of past sorrows that lingered in my heart from when I went to school. As I began to practice, I started to enjoy how I could release my soul into the canvas. I began this practice in 2009, at age 17, and now sense I never stopped creating art. It has truly evolved, and I can proudly say I've also evolved as a person. I'm finally starting to return to truly express my soul as I did as a child, but this time, I have a new mission: to create Holy Art that will electrify and inspire as many hungry, wounded souls similar to me, and create with so much love and light that its almost impossible to resists it's affect, just as Alex Grey's work had done for me, along with many other artists.     The deeper I go into my vision, the deeper the desires becomes to use art as a form of holy practice; to transcend my soul's unique energy into a canvas, to let love, and my passion to draw the line. Art has always been with us as part of our collective human culture. It's a form of release from pain and love. It can change the world for better, or worse, depending on what the artist expresses. Nonetheless, it's still powerful enough to create a change in the environment, and in people's hearts and minds. Our true nature is to express our souls, just like we did when we were children. We must not let the forces of oppression ever diminish our souls, make us fear our own nature, and become heartless people with superficial priorities like greed, or obsession with physical beauty. We're all truly lucky to be alive. We all have so much potential to create anything we truly fix our minds on. It's my turn to contribute my vision, and to let it evolve - little by little - like a garden, until it's a full grown paradise where other artists can unite, and we can forever grow together as a whole. Long live the souls of mankind! © 2013 Maurico Alejandro Ramos aka Paradoxius