For June our Artist of the Month that was randomly selected at the Westchase Artists Society's May meeting is none other than our fabulous President, Dean Mackey. Let's get right to Dean's interview.
Question: Dean, tell us a little bit about yourself, affiliations, personal stuff.
Dean: I started making paper airplanes professionally in 2000 at a kids event, Space Day, in Tewksbury, MA. Ever since then, I saw more and more creativity from people on the web, and decided to organize it all. Adding my own creativity to the mix, it eventually became The Online Paper Airplane Museum.
I decided to write my own paper airplane book, and after submitting it to various publishers, had to self-publish it. I did the same with my second book. Then last year I was approached by an Australian publisher, Hinkler, who asked me to write a book for them. Seems they were wanting to do a paper airplane book, but couldn't find an author. They kept running across my name on the internet, and after looking at my work that I had self-published, went with me. It came out last year and can still be found at Borders.
I have noticed lately that people will stand and watch my hands make paper airplanes. I will be making the planes, talking to folks, and then notice someone staring zombie-like at my hands. It appears that over the years of making planes, my hands can move quite independently of my brain, and the result is quite hypnotic. It is an unusual super-power, and I don't take the responsibility lightly.
Question: Apart from creating art, what do you do?
Dean: I like to garden, travel, read, taekwondo and riding roller coasters
Question: What first made you want to become an artist?
Dean: the smell of easy money, lack of hard labor, and the flexible hours.
Question: Describe your creative process.
Dean: For designing a paper airplane, I usually have in mind the end result that I want to achieve. Then I sit down with paper and bend it to my will, folding it until it submits to my superior intellect. I usually don't take no for an answer from a piece of paper, or even two pieces of paper!
Question: Top 5 books, movies, songs groups, websites.
Books - I enjoy series, like Doc Savage, Casca, The Destroyer, or most anything by Clive Cussler or Edgar Rice Burroughs
Movies - Megaforce, Rocketeer, Nightmare Before Christmas, or anything with John Wayne or Clint Eastwood in it
Songs - I like all kinds of music, but gotta love the '80's
Groups - Only one group really matters, the Westchase Artists Society, of course.
Websites - I found this really neat paper airplane website that encompasses what a website should be - http://www.theonlinepaperairplanemuseum.com/
Question: In ten years I'd like to be...
Dean: ...Holding the Guiness Book of World Record titles for Time Aloft and Distance in paper airplanes, and working on the largest paper airplane in the world, preferably one that can carry a full-sized person.
...Thrown out of the White House at least ONCE for bad behavior.
...Conduct the first international paper airplane contest since 1986.
...Fighting off paper airplane groupies with a stick (the ones I don't like, that is).
Dean thanks for the interview. You've put a whole new spin on paper airplanes.