Meet Mar­cus Thomas

Artist in­spires, pas­sion guides his amaz­ing work

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Mar­cus Thomas started paint­ing in 1986 af­ter an ac­ci­dent had left him par­a­lyzed. He uses his mouth to con­trol the paint­brush to cre­ate ex­quis­ite art­work. Thomas and his wife, Anne, di­vide their time be­tween South­west Florida and North Carolina. Mar­cus Thomas shared in­sights with TOTI Me­dia.

TOTI Me­dia: What is art’s func­tion? Mar­cus Thomas: “As a painter, art has kept me en­gaged in this fast-mov­ing world we all share ... it has pro­vided a fresh plat­form for shar­ing my pas­sion for life through the cre­ation of paint­ings that spin sto­ries or sim­ply glo­rify the beauty of an iconic ob­ject. “Af­ter a neck-break­ing snow-ski­ing ac­ci­dent, I was left with a com­pro­mised di­aphragm, mak­ing com­mu­ni­ca­tion with a weak voice dif­fi­cult … the paint­brush has be­come my new voice, which con­tin­ues to grow in strength. The unique power of art is the abil­ity to stim­u­late all my emo­tional senses, re­mind­ing me that re­gard­less of my paral­y­sis, I am very much alive!”

TM: An artist’s big­gest chal­lenge? MT: “Re­main­ing hon­est and pas­sion­ate to­wards the quest for unique ex­pres­sion … the de­mands of mak­ing a liv­ing with your art can cer­tainly cloud per­spec­tive ... ris­ing above com­mer­cial lim­i­ta­tion is para­mount to cre­ate stim­u­lat­ing paint­ings. Let pas­sion guide!”

TM: Has art changed the way you see things? MT: “Eyes wide open de­scribes my day per­fectly ... in­spi­ra­tion seems to lurk ev­ery­where ... books, movies, back­yard, mu­sic lyrics, travel, daily news, dreams … I will never be short of ideas.”

TM: Ad­vice for young artists? MT: “Fol­low your heart, be pas­sion­ate when cre­at­ing. This ap­plies to all forms of art. When start­ing, don’t let un­re­al­is­tic ex­pec­ta­tion slow your jour­ney, frus­tra­tion and dis­ap­point­ment should be a mo­ti­va­tor. At the end of Michae­lan­gelo’s il­lus­tri­ous ca­reer, he said he was dis­ap­pointed be­cause he was just get­ting the hang of it.”


Fol­low­ing re­hab, Mar­cus Thomas be­gan paint­ing with a wa­ter­color kit. His col­lectible work now sells in gal­leries.

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