Friday, December 23, 2011


Well I guess I'm a little late on posting this, oops.  But fear not, if you're interested in checking it out I think we're just going to leave it up through January.  
I was able to get one large new painting done in time for this one.  I'm so wrapped up in tattooing and researching/drawing those tattoos that I honestly never have free time to paint.  One main reason I wanted to do a show was to force myself to do another painting.  Seems like with the schedule these days I get about one a year done.  There were lots of very late nights and days off spent to get it together...
Painting for me is not something I can just relax with and have it all flow out naturally (although I am able to lose myself for hours in it and that can be pretty trippy and rewarding).  I seem to mentally treat it like a tattoo and go through great pains to make it happen.  I'm not really keen on putting myself out there artistically in the world, but if I do, I want to be proud of it and have it be a reflection of my mindset and work ethic.
I wanted to do a larger piece (the Arches watercolor paper I like to use is 22X30" or so I believe) but didn't really have time to do a big drawing to my satisfaction, so I thought it might be fun to re-imagine a large tattoo I'd done as a painting.  
I decided to do the Tennyo (Buddhist Angel), as I'd just been given a great book called "The 500 Arhats" (arhat is like a very high level spiritual practitioner) by Kazunobu Kano, from my friend Horimasa when he was in town.  It's a really amazing book of paintings and although what I did isn't really in that style, it served as a great inspiration.  In his series of the arhats, he uses lots of gold in the patterning and background.  A lot of Buddhist art utilizes gold, as it really does give a feeling of celestial divinity (come to think of it, lots of religions use gold in their art).  What I liked about Kano's style, was that the gold served as a highlight in clothing and to create atmosphere in the background.  The rest of the colors are great blend of earthy and vibrant.
It was difficult to try and photograph it and I only got one usable picture, crappy as it might be...

It's quite a bit cooler in real life, as it really comes to life and changes quite a lot depending on how the light hits it and picks up the gold.  It reflects well as all the gold including the patterning was done with gold acrylic paint and a brush, not metallic pens.
Also, Mike and Aaron did some new pieces for the show that are very cool and should be checked out. Not to mention Mr. Sonny Wong who tapped into his inner Asian and came up with some cool graffiti inspired large scale pieces...

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