SAN ANTONIO – His name may imply otherwise, but the work of a local artist who goes by the name of “Ghost” is becoming more and more visible around the city of San Antonio.
It’s on the outside walls of bars, as well as on buildings downtown.
Not too long ago, though, the artist, himself, was facing a battle.
“You know, a lot of us guys, we come back and we lost our sense of purpose,” the U. S. Army veteran said.
Ghost had completed tours in Afghanistan and Iraq when he left the military in 2014.
The San Antonian came back home, struggling to figure out what his next mission would be.
“I was having a lot of problems, having a lot of issues reintegrating to regular society,” he said. “As, sort of, an outlet, I started painting.”
Art always had been part of his life. Ghost says he constantly practiced drawing and painting throughout his childhood, and even put his skills to use while in the military.
Still when relatives convinced him to sell some of his work at an art show, he was surprised by the positive reaction he got from the public.
That gave him a boost of confidence and ultimately steered him toward painting for a living.
As he began to make a name for himself, he realized he needed a name that was memorable.
A friend began calling him “Ghost” after he pulled a spooky prank on him one night at a bar.
“I kind of crept up behind him and I scared him,” he said, laughing. “It, kind of, rang a bell, you know? It dinged right there at that moment ‘cause we were looking for brand names.”
His name is on every mural he paints, along with another regular feature.
Ghost includes a nod to his military service in most of his work.
“I try to put an homage to it as much as I can,” he said. “I’m lucky enough to have found something for myself, to find a new mission, to find a new purpose for myself. This is my new purpose.”