Syntax Issue 10
Denver Syntax

{travis millard}

  enter gallery here

We all have some Travis Millard in us. Most however, have had these good parts beaten out of us.

I don’t know what Travis Millard looks like. I don’t know what he smells like or tastes like because I’m not a cannibal. But I know what his life feels like, years and years ago – as a kid. Because I was that kid - until we sat down with my teacher at my fourth grade conference. That was the day it was beaten out of me - with my teacher lamenting to my parents that she was tired, absolutely tired, of me drawing in class all day long.

In this, Travis Millard is a lot like the multitudes of us that picked up whatever implement we could find to just draw; creating that kind of magical forcefield around us that was our sheer protection between those fragile and youthful notions about space and time and function; and the real world outside that bubble.

For Travis Millard drawing has always been about everything. It’s about the inspiration around him and what influences his work. Take a look at his pieces and you will find a “Cross Secion of Los Angeles Air Out My Kitchen Window”. Or, the “Magnified Detail From My Moustache”. If you want to see what’s influencing Millard in his daily life, take a look at what he’s drawing.

And it's not always solitary. For Milliard, art can be a very social engagement, as illustrated by his tireless collaborations with other artists and friends – including his girlfriend, artist Mel Kadel. In this you can feel the charm of youth and living – in his playfulness, his varied textures of paper and pens and markers – any of this could have been drawn on the bus, at the grocery store or over the breakfast table. Anywhere and everything is fair game in Millard’s work – time and place and purpose.

And while, for most of us, the migration into the adult world of career and bills and meaningless jobs proved caustic to our once-perfect youthful ambition to keep things simple, and just _______ (fill in the blank), Millard has kept his eyes in the same place they always were: on a piece of paper, in a sketchbook. Sure Millard, like anybody else, has worked meaningless jobs – and he more than most has ran the gamut – even going as far as working as a used car salesman. And while this job lasted only several days because Millard was fired for hanging-out in the showroom and drawing all day long – this hasn’t gotten him down.

No, like the rest of us – Travis Millard knows where his talent lays and where he finds his center. For Millard, drawing is his contact lens – it keeps him focused.

Throughout his work there is a playfulness and wit. Sometimes dry, sometimes wickedly funny, Millard’s work is bursting at the seams and playing with a myriad of concepts – micro and macrocosmic.

Currently, Millard has a book coming out in 2007, entitled Hey Fudge. He is also regularly creating artwork for such companies as Volcom, Vans, Foundation, Bueno Skateboards, and Transworld. Likewise, Millard is creating an art print for Microsoft.

At the end of the day, we are not Travis Millard. Not even close. But at the end of these same days, we all have a little of what makes Travis Millard beautiful, inside of us all.