The Collective: Anthony Hurd
By Sydney Vargas, Contributing Writer
Two years ago, Anthony Hurd was living at and attend-ing San Diego State University, writing pieces for a small publication. He pursued an education as an English major, with plans of becoming an English professor. Hurd is currently back at his home town with completely different plans and reflects on how he got to where he is now. Hurd laughs at how better off he is now since coming back home to San Diego, which he describes as toxic to his mental health.
It was a particular inebriated and delusional night in San Diego that forced him to come home and to terms with his mental illness.
He reflects on the situation positively, “Everything happens for a reason, you know? I am now free, and open, and ready to start working towards something, you know?”
Now residing back in his hometown, with a much different plan than an english professor, Hurd is currently attending Pasadena City College in pursuit of a career in art. Confessing he has always loved drawing throughout his whole life and, is now determined to make a career out of his passion.
He states “I mainly do drawings with pen and ink; as for painting, mostly acrylic! I also like to incorporate text in some of my drawings.”
His future goals consist of attending The Art Center, in hopes of a career as a Technical Illustrator. Technical Illustrators are responsible for everything from sketches and story-boards to logos to the festive cups at Starbucks.
His art is reflective of his compulsive habits of smoking and taking medication. It also displays his sexuality as a gay man. His first sexual encounter with a man allowed him to feel more free about his inner self. His dearest friend, depicted in many pieces of his work, not only shows his admiration for him but his dedication to depict homosexuality in his work. Hurd wants to depict homosexuality in his work so more people can feel able to express themselves and know they are not alone. He used his talents to illustrate the Chaffey College’s LGBTQ+ organization, called Lavender Coalition.
“It’s really significant because there aren’t too many safe spaces for the LGBTQ+ community in the Inland Empire, which is often considered very conservative,” Hurd said. “One of my biggest influences are the LGBT community and other queer artists. A big influence in my work is pop art, which blends pop culture and art. Some of my favorite artists are Andy Warhol and Keith Haring, especially because they helped a lot with queer representation in art during the 20th century. Keith Haring used his street art to speak out against the political injustices of the time, such as the AIDS crisis, which was devastating to the LGBT community. So I definitely think about that a lot when I am coming up with ideas for drawings and paintings. I really just want to capture the essence of the queer community and provide a point of view from someone who has been marginalized because of their identity.”
Being asked to design the logo for them encouraged Anthony to used techniques he learned from his first art classes at Pasadena City College.
“For The Lavender Coalition Logo, I actually applied a lot of what I learned in my classes. I used a compass and shit to get a good circle. And made sure all the lettering and stuff was symmetrical and what not, and I’m really proud of how it came out.”
His quick advancements make him hopeful as well as hesitant for the future.
Jokingly he said, “I am lazy you know. So sometimes I see people doing things and I get discouraged but I need to just do it, you know? You can’t be scared. There’s nothing to be scared about.”
Staying influenced is key, he states “I think I’m in the process of discovering my style, which is something that I love about art. It’s such a personal journey of progression and experimentation. What I’m most concerned with is creating a piece that speaks to me and that specific message that I am trying to convert through that piece.”
Continuing classes, working on the side as a delivery boy and constantly releasing new material (including himself, his first tattoo) is a testament of the successful fate awaiting Anthony Hurd.
You can find Anthony at @anthony.hurd on Instagram.