Inside the mind of Marcus
Deaf artist communicates through art
July 18, 2014
Marcus Carter is an artist who lives in Havre who uses his art to communicate with other people.
Carter is deaf and was speaking through an interpreter, Melissa Hendricks, at the Atrium Mall as he painted a landscape of mountains.
Carter grew up in Great Falls and attended the Montana School for the Deaf and Blind there.
"That's where I grew up for most of my childhood," Carter said. " ... I learned about myself through drawing and painting."
Jack Fischer, a former teacher at Great Falls High School, was an inspiration to Carter in art, he said through his interpreter. Fischer is now deceased.
"He knew sign language," Carter said. "He taught me how to learn some of my styles."
Carter drew for three or four years under Fischer's guidance, but after Fischer died from cancer, Carter kept up his education in the arts for four more years before quitting for a time.
"I left it for a little while and started it again about four months ago," Carter said. "I wanted to do something a little bit different and I wanted to continue to learn more about myself through art."
Carter's artwork is of many subjects created via many mediums, his favorites being oils and pencils, he said, adding that he used to create many images of animals and dragons, but his favorite now are landscapes.
At the Atrium, Carter began prep work on a canvas at around 10 a.m. and some time after 1 p.m., he had completed a full landscape of mountains around a lake.
Carter said he wants to create art because he wants to communicate with people.
"I wanted to show who I am through art," Carter said. " ... I like to show people and have them watch me. It makes people happy. It's nice to have them look and be inspired."
He added that inspiring people is one of his biggest motivators in making art.
"I love to inspire people through my art," he said. "And help people improve their mindsets. I want to show them something that will inspire people; not just a bunch of boring pictures."
Carter said his life in Havre has been pretty good. He has made some friends and has family living in the area.
He works at Walmart in Havre and has done so for almost seven years.
"It was a little bit of a hard adjustment because I can't hear," he said. "Lip reading was difficult."
He said a woman who works with him has helped him with his communications skills, and he has been improving because of her help.
His mother works in Chinook as a nursing assistant and one of his sisters lives and works in Havre as a manager at a casino.
Carter said something he would like people to know is that he wants them to understand that he cannot hear, but he can read lips and understand people's faces.
He said he wants to relay this on paper.
"I love to be able to communicate with people however I can and help them be inspired," Carter said.
Carter plans to go to University of Montana in Missoula to pursue degrees in the arts and business.
"That will be very helpful in improving my skills," Carter said.
After he gets his degrees, he plans on opening his very own art studio and teaching others how to express themselves through art.