Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Pheaturing Michael Banks

I'm underpaid right now, sure. I'm tired of pretending like I'm not special. I'm tired of pretending like I'm not bitching, a total frickin' rock star from Mars. People can't figure me out, they can't process me. I don't expect them to. You can't process me with a normal brain. Oh, sorry, I was just rambling. Welcome to the Phile, I am your host, Jason Peverett, who is on a drug called Jason Peverett. Today is Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent. Don't you guys dare to give up the Phile for a month or however long this Lent business takes. Have you guys been watching "American Idol"? Randy Jackson is now the mean judge. He’s telling some contestants that they sound like they’re doing karaoke. He’s right. Some of the karaoke singers do sound like they’re doing karaoke. The only difference between “American Idol” and karaoke is that on “Idol,” they don’t have the words in front of them and most of them aren’t drunk while they’re singing. Some of Justin Bieber’s hair was auctioned online for $40,000. The winning bidder wasn’t identified — because I didn’t want to be identified. Lindsay Lohan’s brother is dropping his last name because he feels like it has become an albatross around his neck — which means Lindsay’s going to steal it. I have to tell you something real right now, my right eye is swollen and is freaking hurting like hell, so this might be a short entry of the Phile. I went to the doctor yesterday and was told it could be a virus infection, or a bacterial infection but it definitely is swollen. No shit. Logan and I were supposed to go see the new movie Rango today but that's not gonna happen. I have been wanting to see this movie for a long time. In Rango a chameleon beats the bad guys by using the element of surprise. It’s the same way I used to approach dating. Chameleons aren’t the only animals that change their skin color. So does a fish, an octopus, and Snooki. Jim Morrison from The Doors used to call himself “the lizard king.” But the real lizard king is Larry King. Anyway, at the doctor's they did give me a prescription for eye drops. This is what I got.

And speaking of eyes, check out this inspirational poster.

This is the 14th book to be pheatured in the Peverett Phile Book Club.

The book is available from Amazon and one of the author's Toby Hadoke will be on the Phile soon.

Today's guest is a very talented artist whose style I think is very freakin' cool. He'll be appearing at MegaCon here in Orlando from March 26th to the 28th, so stop by his table and tell him I said hello. You might see me there as well. Anyway, please welcome to the Phile... Michael Banks.

Me: Hello, Michael, welcome to the Phile, man. How are you?

Michael: Thanks for having me. I am doing amazing... never better, everything is perfect here in Imaginationland.

Me: Isn't Michael Banks a character from Mary Poppins?

Michael: Why yes he is and what a great movie too have been a part of... alright, that wasn't me though I do consume spoon fulls of sugar any chance I get.

Me: So, I didn't know if I should call you Coallus, or Michael. What is Coallus?

Michael: You can call me Michael. Coallus is just my alias I go by in the art world.

Me: Where did that word come from? Did you make it up?

Michael: I made the word Coallus so no one will get me confused with any other artists, there are too many Michaels in the world. Coallus is the words coalesce and illustrate mushed together and to me means to bring together my stories and ideas for people to enjoy and understand in the form of art.

And what's with the star and lightning bolt symbol that is in a lot of your work?

Michael: Haha... everyone thinks the same thing when they see the symbol, it is actually a broken star. I got the idea for it after many years of using the star as a symbol for dreams and needed something to represent when dreams don't come true. I just added a crack to a star like the traditional broken heart symbol. Over the years it has become my trademark, signature and symbol for perseverance. I use it a lot as a reminder to keep moving forward even if I never reach my goals or dreams... at least I'm trying.

Me: I love having artists on the Phile, because I always wanted to be one. Now I just doodle. Did you start out just as a doodler?

Michael: Of course, I think all artist have to start out as doodlers, no one is born making perfect art. I started before I can even remember and just kept at it.

Me: Did you always want to be an artist? You used to be a musician, is that right?

Michael: Yes, I grew up watching a lot of Disney, cartoons and Bob Ross painting every morning. I knew at a very young age that was what I wanted to do with my life no matter what it took. I also played guitar and had a few bands over the years, hardcore and noise. I wasn't very good and didn't make a lot of money with it so art became my main priority.

Me: Your art is very original and there are a lot of big eyes in your work, Michael. Is that because of your big glasses?

Michael: Thanks! no, I have always loved big eyes in art from all the cartoons growing up and the big eye movement of the 60's and 70's that I discovered and have collected over the years from junk shopping at thrift stores. I wear the big glasses to see my work, I can't stand things to be in my view when I work. When I needed to get glasses I looked everywhere I tried on hundreds and nothing worked, I needed big! so I asked my dad for his military issued birth control glasses from the 80's. They always made me laugh and I love to entertain so they where perfect.

Me: You're a fan of who is Margaret Keane, right? Who is she anyway anyway?

Michael: Margaret is one of my favorite artists, she and an artist named gig are my favorites of the thrift store finds. We are friends, talked and exchanged art... which I am still in shock about. She is, I believe to be the mother of the big eye art movement. Super talented, sweet amazing lady with awesome big eye art and an even more amazing story behind it.

Me: I like it that you put your art work in several catergories, which have all lower case lettering for some reason. When did you start to do that?

Michael: I have always separated my art into sections, shows or time periods. Like everyone, my life is always changing which causes my work to look different or maybe it is a whole different story I am trying to tell and it needs to be grouped together. As for the the lower case thing, I am not a very good writer thats why I tell my stories through my art. When I first started using computers I would write e-mails in all capitals because I hadn't typed before and was lazy with my capitalization and people where saying I was yelling at them... so ever since, as a joke I only use lower case letter. I am a pretty happy, easy going laid back guy and never want people to think I am mad. haha...

Me: Yeah, no shit. It took me hours to fix your lower case i's. LOL. Anyway, I like your "pop" collection with the drawings of celebrities. How did you do those?

Michael: Thanks again! The pop collection was just a fast easy way to make money as I was concentrating on my oil painting and getting out of the tattoo industry. Obviously it worked for Warhol and at the time street art was starting to become very popular. Through my travels I watched artist such as Shepard Fairey, Banksy and robots will kill and thought I could do that while I travel city to city selling art. I sold a ton on ebay, made thousands of stickers and stencils to hit the road and covered the U.S. in art for years to get people interested in my main love of oils. The pop art was made with stencils and spray paint. Making stencils came very easy to me since I had been working in the screen printing business for quit a few years and they are very similar techniques.

Me: I was trying to figure out what medium you use... oils, spray paint, crayons. I am guessing you use it all, right?

Michael: Yes, I have use it all except crayons, thats been a while. I use pen and prisma colors for my tattoo flash, prisma markers for fast projects, spray paint for my stencils and oils are my main medium.

Me: Okay, I noticed you have lots of tats, my friend. How many, and when did you first get them? I have four myself, but they are not as detailed as you.

Michael: Yeah, you might say that, I really only have one though. It just happens to cover my entire body.

Me: Do you still like being a tattoo artist?

Michael: I am no longer a tattoo artist, I tattooed for the last 12 years and just felt like that chapter in my life was over and I wanted to really pursue my dreams of being a oil painter and artist for Disney.

Me: You did something which is called tattoo flash. What in the world is that?

Michael: Tattoo flash is the art you see on the walls when you enter almost any tattoo shop, just reference art for people to look at to get ideas for what they may want.

Me: MegaCon is coming up, Michael, which I am planning to go to, and you'll be there tis year. have you ever done a convention like that before?

Michael: I know, I am excited! I'm sure we will bump into each other there. It is gonna be my first convention other than Nerdapalooza that is not tattoo related. Curious to see how this works. I have some good stuff in the works for this show. Fingers crossed.

Me: Are you into comics?

Michael: Yes, not into reading them but I really enjoy the art. When it comes to reading, I am into fantasy, art and biographies like Theodor Geisel, Charlie Chaplin, Houdini and most of all Walt and the history of Disney.

Me: What about galleries and art shows? I bet you sell a lot of art there.

Michael: I do put on and take part in a lot of art shows. Solo and group shows. Sometimes you win, sometimes you loose. Conventions are the best way to sell and get your name and art out there.

Me: Hey, you should draw something for the Phile. A picture of me that says The Peverett Phile somewhere. I wanna see what I look like with big eyes. LOL.

Me: Sounds like a plan buddy, I'll get on that as soon as I get up to date on all my shows. It will be a fun one.

Me: Michael, thanks so much for being on the Phile, man. I wish you continued success. Why don't you go and plug your website?

Michael: What a swell idea... please check out my work at All my links to stores and everything else is there as too. If you like what you see, please let me know and be my pal on Facebook, Myspace and Twitter as well.

Me: Thanks again, and come back to ther Phile soon, okay?

Michael: You know it, thank you for taking the time to check out my work and talk with me. Have a magical day! Haha...

That about wraps it up for another entry of the Phile. Thanks to Michael Banks for a great interview. The Phile will be back next Wednesday with singer. actress and model Ana Aston unless I go almost blind in my other eye. In the meantime check out my friend Jeff's blog at Spread the word, not the turd, don't let snakes and alligators bite you. Bye, love you, bye.

Art by Coallus.

1 comment:

Metropolis America said...

Congrats on your five years! May you have five more of non-normal brained people not being able to process you.