Alumni Spotlights
JANUARY 2016

Flashback Friday
Patrick Maxcy (2002)

Artist and Humanitarian


Patrick_Maxcy

Each week, St. Johns River State College will honor one of its own in an alumni salute, celebrating the career milestones, community contributions and personal reflections of those who began their collegiate journey as SJR State Vikings.

Patrick Maxcy is certainly no reflection of his favorite quote, “The saddest thing in life is wasted talent” from the movie “A Bronx Tale.” At age 6, Patrick was already designing and selling his own T-shirt series. Inspired by his dad, who designed T-shirts for various events, young Patrick approached one of his father’s business contacts and presented a drawing of his own, a picture of a crab pinching a penguin’s rump on the beach. That artwork went over so well that it became the catalyst for Patrick’s popular T-shirt line, For Kids by Kids.

Patrick’s childhood home provided a “creative, fun outlet” that he “never wanted to give up on,” he said. His artistic foundation led him to the Florida School of the Arts, where he earned his Associate in Science degree in studio painting and graphic design in 2002. “I had made art for most of my life, but the instructors at FloArts were more than just teachers – they were amazing friends, too,” said Patrick. “Instructors like David Ouellette were great creative teachers who would work with you one-on-one. Besides the classes, the smaller size of FloArts made it easier to make great friends who were more like a tight-knit family.”

Patrick Maxcy
Patrick Maxcy Patrick Maxcy

Patrick went on to receive his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Florida Atlantic University, followed by earning a teaching degree and a stint of teaching high-school art. Patrick then focused on turning his love for art into successful commercial work and involving himself with a variety of humanitarian projects. Patrick’s clients and partnerships include, but are not limited to, Nike, Jedidiah, the History channel, Ocearch, Light Gives Heat, Love Light & Melody, the Humane Society of the United States, Christian Surfers International, the Art of Collaboration, and the PangeaSeed Foundation.

As an impassioned humanitarian, Patrick has completed his sixth trip to Nicaragua, where he has painted several murals for families who live in extreme poverty. “Adding color and light to dark areas is pretty amazing to see,” he said. “Statistically, crime rates go down when art is added to a city or environment.” Last year, alone, Patrick painted nine murals for different organizations to raise money and awareness for various causes. “I’ve painted murals with kids and families in parts of Central America, Africa, and various parts of the United States,” he noted.

When asked what inspired him to volunteer artistic work in foreign countries, Patrick explained, “Later in life, I realized we are all born with a gift, a talent that is meant to be shared with others. Everyone has something they enjoy as a kid but often forget about it or put it to the side. It could be dance, art, music, speaking, writing, etc. That joy is meant to be shared with the world and others in need. It’s an amazing feeling to give and share that gift with people around the world.”

While being an artist is, undoubtedly, Patrick’s gift, he also understands the importance of being a savvy businessman to thrive in his field. “Being a great artist isn't even half of what it takes to make it in the art world. You have to also be extremely business-oriented,” he stated. “I’ve always been highly organized and a people person. Making connections in person and keeping in contact with people in organizations is key.” With that in mind, Patrick’s artwork is showing in eight galleries across the United States and is featured in various publications and live shows.

Learn more about Patrick’s art and humanitarian projects at www.patrickmaxcyart.com.

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