George let’s get the basics out of the way. We noticed the accent right away. When and where were you born?
I was born on a stormy March morning in 1984 in a little town in named Wendell, North Carolina. As they say… American by birth, Southern by the grace of God.
Who gave you the name "GORGEOUS" anyways....?
Tim, from Death Science and Show Class, started calling me Gorgeous George when he welcomed me into the family and it stuck amongst all the homies. I dig it due to the reason that I am by far one of the most beautiful people you will ever lay eyes upon. Haha. Obviously joking there! Honestly, I am just waiting for the WWE to send me a cease and desist on the name. Then I'll change it to George the Gorgeous.
Your style of art is very unique and seems to stand out from most bike and skate art we get. When did you first start drawing and realize your passion for art?
My brother was a total handful growing up, so my mom used to sit me down at the kitchen table with a box of dot-matrix printer paper and this old broken cover to a record player, turned upside down, and filled with broken crayon pieces. I would sit there while she cooked and kept an eye on my brother raising hell, and I'd color and draw anything from skateboarders to X-Men. It was there at the kitchen table I found that I definitely wanted art be a major part of my life.
Choppers and skateboarding are obvious influences of your art and I’m assuming a big part of who you are. What’s your background in skateboarding and riding bikes?
I have been skateboarding my entire life. Even though I grew up out in the country, we had a paved driveway and I used to ride my Scooby-Doo scooter all the time as a really little kid. It was one of those scooters that was a tiny skateboard with a t-bar that bolted to the board where the front truck is. I begged my dad to take the handle bars off, so I could just ride the board like my brother. From then it progressed to riding my brother's K-Mart, Valterra Melt Down board for years. Finally I got a complete set up in 6th grade. Think Board, Indy's, Spitfires, Bones Bearings, Jessup Grip. Man, that shit was rad! Totally changed my life having a real board that functioned like a skateboard should. Now I ride an old man set up, haha. 9" Anti Hero, 169 Indy's, 61mm Spitfires. Ya know, it's set up for ripping fast through all the awesome concrete creations that have popped up in NC in the last 10 years.
Anyway, now that I have bored you to death with technical skate shit, let's talk motorsickles. I became obsessed with motorsickles in art school and since I was so broke and couldn't afford a motorized bike, I made a rad chopper bicycle out of my Huffy beach cruiser. After that I would "rescue" bikes late at night from the bike racks on campus that had been sitting there for a long time and take them in my apartment and chop them, paint them, swap handle bars, tweak the frames and forks. There were bicycles and parts all over my apartment.
Once I graduated from ECU and got a job teaching art in public school, I found a cool little 650 Suzuki on Craigslist and me and my Old Man started chopping' on it and learning as we went. I was an awesome way to hang out with the old man and just see what we could come up with. He has this joke, that we are "Jack Leg." I'm Jack and he is Leg. Since his name is John he was "Jack," and me being 6'4," I am "Leg," hahaha. Now I am riding a 1983 XLH dubbed the Bologna Pony by my Death Science brethren. Obviously the huge wiener shaped sissy bar is the root of it's name. Some of Finger's finest work went into bending up that sissy bar for me. Super fun bike to ride and it's kooky look is an extension of my quirky artistic side.
Your blog rules and has a lot of interesting stuff. What’s your favorite fishing hole out your way and how often do you get out and fish?
Thanks! We recently moved to a tiny town in the North Eastern part of the state for jobs and it is situated where the Chowan River dumps into the Albemarle sound. We live on a creek that feeds into the sound and I have gotten into fishing a lot more since we moved here a year ago. I grew up fishing with my Old Man, but lost the passion for it when a driver's license allowed me the freedom to go skate all the street spots in Raleigh as a teenager. I have found our little private dock, The Honey Hole, to be a therapeutic release after a long day of teaching aggervatin'-ass middle school students. I still like to travel a few hours back home to hit up the ol' fishin' hole I grew up on, and hook some big ol' chubs.
Tell us about your knife and gun collection. I’ve seen some goodies on your site.
I'll tell ya man, I have never spent a dime on anything other than ammunition. Coming from a long line of proud, Southern, 2nd amendment supporters there are lots of firearms that have been passed down through the generations. Luckily, I have been trusted to take care of them to pass on to the next generation. One of my favorites is my Smith & Wesson .32 I received last Christmas. It has been in the family for years. Such an awesome little pistol with an amazing story behind it. But I'm gonna have to keep that story in the family, sorry.
You're heading out to Cali soon for Born Free 4 and to hang with Loser machine. What else are your plans for the rest of the year as far as art and riding go?
Ride as much as possible. Skate as much as possible. Fish as much as possible. Hang out with my Death Science Brothers as much as possible. Oh, and me and my Ol' Lady, Melanie, are getting married in December. Definitely looking forward to that party!!!
Skynyrd or Maiden? Pabst or Coors?
David Allan Co. PBR!!! However an ol' Colorado Kool Aid is good every now and then.
Let's keep this short and sweet. We're a big fan of your work and stoked to have you on board at Loser. Is there any words or thanks you want to give ?
Definitely a huge thank you to you guys: Adrian, Paul, and Chris at Loser Machine/ Dark Seas! Thanks a ton for the opportunity to get my art out there for an exponentially greater amount of people to see. Huge thanks to my wonderful woman, Melanie, for her constant love and support.
Gigantic thanks to my parents for always encouraging me to just be myself and do what feels right and true. Huge thanks to all of my Death Science family: Tim, Matt, Vander, Jason, Fingers, Jay, Billy, Benji, Kyle, Josh, Wesley, Ray, and Murphy-- some of the most amazing and wonderfully unique characters that I am proud to call family. Thanks to all the dudes who contribute to Show Class and make it the true chopper rag it is. Thank you Clarke for the non-stop positive love. And to anyone who has ever liked my art, supported my art, bought my art, or told anyone about my art, you are heroes and I thank you from the bottom of my heart!