program

Welcome to an interesting and unusual event. I hope you enjoy yourself.

I’m speaking in the first person, because I only speak for myself, but this event is the culmination of thousands of hours of work by a multitude of amazing individuals, and I will give as many of them credit as I can. I’m only human, and my memory is weak.

Please explore the open areas of the building and grounds…. you’ll be amazed at what you find. Victoria’s Black Swan Inn is the perfect venue for the works you see here, both in the RW (Real World) and Virtually, on your preferred device. Also, please respect locked doors and “Do Not Enter” signs.

While many areas of the Inn are public, the owners live here, and we must respect their privacy. Thank you.

You will find a number of QR codes in the space….. those are the little black and white squares you see. Scan the code, and it will take you to a page related to that model/exhibit. You can also scroll through this program for direct links.

What is a Zen Monster? An individual who, while attempting clarity and peace, also feels the dynamic urge to create… to challenge… to break down norms and find something new. Someone who doesn’t quite fit in the world of “normals.”

Zen Monsters is the attempt of artists from a multitude of fields to collaborate and promote each other…. which is always our greatest weakness. Artists of all stripes usually suck at business and marketing, this event is one attempt to overcome that disability by working together.

Hopefully, Zen Monsters will explode far beyond this night, creating a home for everyone who needs us.

 

Participants, in a chaotic order of no significance.

 

Jaime Rodriguez,

aka The God Slayer

I met the God Slayer “by accident.” Testing light with Wesley De La Rosa at the gym where he worked, I was intrigued by the spunky dude with really cool hair. (It was not a natural color at that time.) And then Wes committed a huge social faux pas.

“Hey John,” he said, “Jaime’s been thinking about modeling. You two should totally work together!”

I blinked. I did that again. I had just had some HORRIBLE experiences with models and had avowed to never, ever work with anyone I didn’t know ever again. And yes, I was that guy in college the first time he waaaaay over-indulged who swore he’d never drink again.

I faked a smile, extended a card, and said, “Drop me a line.” Hopefully, he never would.

He did.  Thank all the gods.

Jaime has not only become a good friend, but he also works with me when his schedule permits as a production assistant and guy who generally knows when to tell me I’m full of crap. The shoots I do with him at my back are definitely the better for it.

 

Wesley de la Rosa

I met Wesley by “accident,” too. I saw his profile while looking for models to shoot for Third Testament: The Acts of St. Michael. I’d sent him a message, which he kinda ignored….. sorry, buddy, but it’s true!

Then I did a shoot with a random mutual friend (Hello, San Antonio.) We both commented on the Facebook post, and the mutual friend declared we needed to work together. Now, Wes is one of my go-to people to experiment as you will see from the variety in the online gallery, as well as a close friend. He’s also doing his best to help me lose weight….. and any troubles on that front are entirely my own. He is an amazing trainer and I highly recommend him.

Sarah Cevallos

Wes has introduced me to more than one model… he introduced me to Sarah Cevallos. It was my first shoot with Wes, and he asked if his girlfriend could come along. Ugh. Okay, I get models wanting someone along for a first shoot in case the photographer is a creep… but a girlfriend? Really?

Reluctantly, I agreed, and, yet again, Wes introduced me to an amazing person!

As you will see in the online gallery, Sarah and Wes have helped me create some amazing art.

Thank you, Sarah! Sorry I was reluctant at first!

Courtney Johnson