Trevor James Sim is a Rochester artist who specializes in acrylics and watercolor.
A year ago, Sim decided to become a full-time painter after years of mixing his time in the studio with his 40-hours-per-week schedule at unfulfilling jobs.
In the past year, Sim has sold dozens of paintings and prints, some for a little as $5, and has organized several big art shows at both the Creative Salon and his Rochester home.
So what made you quit, as you called it, your “pizza jobs,” and work on your art full time?
A couple years ago, the (Creative) Salon became available to us (local artists), and it was the first time that we had a place where we could actually show and sell artwork. I was in a community where we could also create and promote shows on our own. We were able to market our work. It’s been a learning process for everybody, but it will be interesting to see how it all comes together.
How do people describe your art?
I think people would think there was a lot of it, and they would think it’s really detailed.
Many of your early works were drawing and watercolors of single woman, sometimes nude. What made you move away from that to more watercolors and acrylics that depict a story?
I’ve just always loved to read, so just the idea of combining the two and creating an illustration interested me. Turning the written word into art is something that I’ve always wanted to do.
You’re known as much for organizing art shows and for your artwork. What do you have planned for 2014-15?
I’m going to try and set up some new shows, and I want to do a solo show. I haven’t really done that yet, so I would like to build my work up, so I can do that and surprise people with some new stuff.
After doing so many big group shows, any worries about booking a solo show?
It is terrifying to have your own show and not have people to help you, but it’s also tough trying to organize a show with 50 artists. In some ways, that sounds a lot harder than doing a solo show. Doing it myself sounds kind of relaxing.
How much time do you spend drawing and painting?
I definitely spend 40 hours a week working. The days get split up into little segments from dawn till dusk. It’s kind hard to tell when an artist starts and when he stops because you’re always working. With a job like this, if you’re not painting, you feel like you should be.
Do you miss the guaranteed income from your “pizza jobs?”
It’s been a lot different. I’ve been making it month to month all of the time. It’s a lot more freedom, though, that I would not usually have, and I’m feeling like I’m doing something more important with my time, too.