The Creations of Scott Gearheart

 
 
 

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Scott Gearheart

The Creations of Scott Gearheart

Portland, OR

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At 15, Scott suffered a spinal cord injury while playing ice hockey, a sport he’d played since he was five. This left him “medically defined” as a c4 quadriplegic.

Scott admits he can be a bit bull-headed at times. He refused to paint following his accident, because he didn’t want to hold the brushes using his mouth. To him, painting without using his hands would be as if he’d given in to being a quadriplegic. He didn’t want that! Unless he could paint like “normal” people, he didn’t want to paint at all. And so he didn’t.

Finally, in 2003, after much prodding from family and friends, he decided to swallow his pride and try painting. Of course, he first tried holding the brush with his hands. But it didn’t work; the brush fell out of his hand upon the slightest pressure from the canvas. He tried again, but this time holding the brush with his teeth. It worked! The canvas took the paint. So he kept at it. Six months later he completed his first painting.

Painting now occupies a bulk of Scott’s time and energy. He says that every piece he does, whether a 5” x 7” or wall-size, receives the same attention. Each of his paintings has spent hours upon hours weighing on his mind.

Scott calls on his life, his experiences, and his emotions when developing the idea for a painting. He says that there is no time during the day when he is not thinking about one of his pieces. He has between 2 to 3 conceptual ideas for new pieces running through his mind at all times.

Because of the way he paints and the toll it takes on his body (his neck, jaw, and back all become exhausted after a couple of hours painting), it takes Scott between 4 to 8 weeks to complete a project. Often times, a piece can take up to 12 weeks to complete because Scott might insert a break into the process in order to reflect and recharge.

 

Homo sapiens

Autobiography