I’m very happy to announce that my work will now be represented by Yves Laroche Gallery in Montreal, Canada.
I am presently traveling around and working out of different countries in Central America, therefore, for the next few seasons, Yves Laroche Gallery will be my primary dealer and contact in Montreal. Please check them out!
Note that the gallery also has access to more paintings than those appearing on their site.
I haven’t had time this summer for keeping this site updated and fresh, let alone most other things in my life. I have been so busy that all I can do is sleep when I get the chance, however, I’ve been busy with good things. For the past 3 months or so, I’ve been working on some special effects for the film “Noah,” a film by Darren Aronofsky starring Emma Watson, Russell Crowe and Logan Lerman. It’s basically based off of the biblical story Noah’s Ark.
This is the first time I work in special effects and I quite like it. The studio that I’m working for is full of talented and friendly special effects artists, and learning from them has been, and is, a great experience. I’d love to show you pictures of the animals we are creating, but then I’d get fired.
A few things have been on the back burner in the mean time, slow cooking, and eventually getting done. Just this past month I participated in a group art show in Portland, Oregon. The show is still up and running at Hellion Gallery and is called “Live Free.” The show was curated by a talented artist and friend of mine, Mike Maxwell. Mike put together a selection of artists that he has had on his series of podcasts called “Live Free.” The artwork and participating artist list is quite impressive and I’m happy to be part of it!
I recently finished a few little commissioned artworks. From time to time I take these on and it usually brings me out of what I normally do, which is more of a challenge, but always a good experience in the end. I normally don’t post my commissions in my regular portfolio, but here are 3 that I recently finished. (the shots aren’t the best quality)
Next on the agenda is a BIG change. I’ll be moving to Guatemala in November for 6 to 8 months to learn Spanish, travel around some, and set up a studio to continue doing art. It’s just time to get out of the routine and freshen up my outlook, hopefully create some great art. My plan is to continue writing this blog out there, where I imagine I’ll have more time than I do now.
Carmelo Blandino is an incredibly talented and inspirational artist as well as a great person. I had the pleasure of being his student when he was a teacher at Dawson College in Illustration and Design. Since then we have become friends and he has become a sort of guiding light in this stormy sea of making fine arts a career. As a person, Carmelo is very positive and encouraging. His luscious paintings are masterfully executed in technique, colour and form. His subjects are aesthetically pleasing with the added depth of exploring eastern ideologies and philosophy.
Carmelo Blandino is presently having an exhibition at Galerie de Bellefeuille in Montreal. His bio is below:
Born to Sicilian parents in Tübingen, Germany, and raised in the culturally charged city of Montreal, Quebec, Blandino studied art and design at the city’s local colleges and began a successful career as a freelance illustrator, working with architects, designers, and advertising agencies. In 2002, Blandino shifted his focus to the world of fine art. Today, his paintings are widely known for their immediacy and their sensual, even lascivious expressions of colour, movement, and shape. His work is exhibited in New York, Palm Beach, Naples, Stockholm, Calgary, Vancouver, Toronto and his beloved Montreal. He has conducted summer workshops at Von Liebig Art Center of Naples, Florida, and taught drawing for many years at Dawson College in Montreal before transplanting himself to Naples, Florida where he lives today.
I’m having my next exhibition on April 6th, 2012 at Ayden Gallery in Vancouver, titled Awakening the Fire.
I’ll also be showing along side Jose Rivas, an awesome artist from Vancouver, as well as Lawrence Nerbonne, another great artist from Montreal.
I’ll be featuring 14 new works that range in size from 12″ x 18″ to 4′ x 5.’ I will be presenting, for the first time, my latest mixed media works on wood. I’m feeling good about the work in this exhibit and I hope you get the chance to check it out.
Maria Kreyn is a Russian born, New York based artist. She has a wonderful body of work with paintings and drawings that come from a classical approach, with attention to technique and composition.
What I enjoy is not only not only her technical approach, but her use of light and colour, and the intensity she is able to capture in the faces that she depicts.
Check out more of her work on FB or at her site.
Pakayla Biehn is a multidisciplinary artist based out of San Francisco. Featured here are a selection of oil paintings from her “Double Exposure” series. Biehn used a variety of photographs as references for this body of work; some are from single exposure shots from photographer and friend Jeff Enlow, which Biehn digitally composited in Photoshop. Other photographs are double exposure shots from photographer Tamara Lichtenstein.
Biehn’s paintings have a soft and delicate approach, light colour range, which coupled with the a ghostly double exposure effect, gives the work a dreamy, contemplative feel.
Biehn is currently exhibiting at Thinkspace Gallery in Culver city. Check out her webpage or this wonderful interview on Erratic Phenomena.
Shawn Barber, based out of L.A., focuses on the portraiture and tattoo culture. His paintings are lively and expressive, and range in technique from tight, beautifully executed renderings to expressive markings all in the one piece. Barber will often superimpose numerous limbs on his figures, suggesting the passage or time, or as I like to think, an ethereal and spiritual plane as you would see in Hindu representations of gods and goddesses.
On his site, Barber has a great write up about his story, and especially on being a professional artist. Check it out!
My latest painting, “Natural Phases,” is oil and bronze leaf on wood panel, 48″ high by 36″ across.
It’s an interesting thing that happened with the creation of this painting; I had put together my composition, which I was happy with, and then printed out my references and was set to begin. I had printed out the design in it’s entirety, as well as two details, or close ups, so that I can get good references for my painting. Then, there I was before the panel, all set to commence. I laid out the three reference pages and one of the close ups caught my eye. It was intriguing as it was, only displaying a portion of the full image. It left elements of the image in question and it posed more questions than the initial idea. I liked the ambiguity it presented. And so, after about a day of contemplation, I decided to go for it. The rest of the painting happened in a similar fashion. Imagery came to mind as I painted which led me to add elements as well as take them away.
Angela Fraleigh is an artist based out of Allentown, Pennsylvania. Fraleigh’s paintings range in scale from very large canvases, as the work featured above, “The Quietest Sounds on Earth” which is 96″ x 192″, to small scale works of only 11″x14.” I feel it is important to include the scale of her work to give you an idea of how much of a presence they would have in person.
Fraleigh states “My work twists and exploits notions of nostalgia for a lost youth, when everything was seemingly possible, and a longing for an idealism somehow unmarred by defeat and failure. This lingering desire to hold sweet and superficial ideals collides with an unraveling discomfort and dissolution. There is an attempt to freeze the past, yet the future continues to creep in, distorting and disturbing the vision.”
There is dynamic movement in Fraleigh’s compositions and a captivating balance of light and dark, realism and abstract. The marrying of her realistic figurative renderings and the ethereal abstractions take us to a world of limbo, emotional memory and transformation.
Check out more of Fraleigh’s wonderful work on her website.
This is my latest painting which remains untitled. It runs along the same lines of my previous painting, but was initially thought out a little more than the last one.
I had set out to paint the figure in dark, natural flesh tones, but just as I was about to start applying the paint, the painting caught the eye of one of my studio mates. At that point the skin was just the colour of the underpainting, which is red. She loved how it resembled a two tone screen print or poster.. and that got me thinking. I started considering a red skin tone and how that could change the painting’s impact.
This painting draws influence from religious paintings. I love the power of religious iconography, and this painting uses the languages of Tibetian thangka paintings, and Christian icon paintings.
This painting is 36″ x 24,” and is oil and bronze leaf on wood panel.
A few of months ago, I met up with an old friend of mine from high school who I probably haven’t seen in at least ten years. It was the magic of Facebook that got us in contact again. It happened because one day I asked my FB friends if anyone was interested in posing for some pictures that I would later use in paintings, and Chris, who I painted here, was down for meeting up for some shots. We met up at OMEN‘s B-Sides and Horrors exhibit and I napped a few pics.
I didn’t really know where this painting was going when I started. I began experimenting with some copper leaf effects for backgrounds and I wanted to attempt painting on one. The painting here is a sketch of sorts, testing out the surface. It’s quite small, at only 10″ x 8.” The white, feathery light from Chris’ forehead was one of the final touches and just seemed to be what the painting was calling for. It seems to fit my series of paintings, ‘Between Perceptions,’ and so I’ll be adding it to the line up. Although the painting is still untitled, let’s just call it ‘Chris’ for now.
Above is my latest painting which I didn’t get to naming yet, but since it’s of my friend Raji, I’ll just call it “Raji” for now. This piece took a bit longer to complete than most of my recent work, probably because of it’s substantial size and my absence of big brushes. This piece is five feet high by 40 inches. As you can see it’s very colourful, so needless to say, it has a presence and demands attention. After staring at it for an extended period of time and then looking away, the colours of the world appear less lively.
This painting is the third in a series of work that is diving into super saturated complementary colours. The works are challenging me to control colours that compete and don’t easily play well together. On my palette the paint looks like an arrangement of brightly coloured candy. If I’m not careful while applying it and unintentionally blend rival colours, the colour becomes a murky mess. This forces me to paint in a fashion that is new for me; layering thick amounts of paint as to not disturb the underlying layer. The result is a more painterly effect with more texture than I’m used to.
This is not Morgan Freeman, although I can’t help thinking it is. This new painting’s reference is from a random picture I found online. I’m just joining the parade of people appropriating things from mass media without crediting the source. The original image just really worked well for my idea. In fact, the first two paintings in this theme are similar in that they are from ripped off images.. or maybe I should say these works are ‘inspired by’ such images or how about, in my new work I’m using ‘found images’ .. yes, yes, those sound better.
Once I set out on this new theme of paintings, I really needed to get working before it lost steam, and the internet has a wealth of images. I’ve since begun taking shots of my friends. The painting I’m currently working on is of someone I know. Will painting someone I know affect the work itself? .. well I know it affects the my process, but I’m not sure if it will be evident to anyone else. Look out for the next piece and you be the judge.
Above is my latest piece. It remains untitled, as sort of a conscious plan not to contextualize what it is I’m doing with my latest series of work… yet here I am writing about it.
The intense colour palette is most likely a reaction to the darker series of work I was doing prior to this in ‘Between Perceptions” and “A Vision in the Night”. I’m beginning to realize that I tend to go to opposing extremes in colour and light. It’s possible that this may not be well received by people looking for consistency, but the most important issue for me is that I’m following what it is that I have the drive to paint.
The idea for the colour scheme originally came from some tapestry I saw while in Thailand and India a few years ago. The intense colours of different hues next to each other seemed to make the patterns electric and alive. Balancing these colours in this painting was a little tricky, and a few times I thought I was finished but later came back with a slight variation on a colour until it was right.
In this untitled painting we have an extreme close up, and a soft smile in a hard cropped image… this kind of imagery is setting the stage for the next few paintings to come. This piece is 36″ x 24,” and done with oil on panel.
A few months ago I set out to explore some new ideas, and try some new techniques on a smaller scale. I didn’t exactly know what I was after, and while it was difficult not to know what it is I was trying to achieve, it also gave me the opportunity to try something new and give attention to some lingering imagery that I had in my mind. The series of paintings maintained a similar feel, mostly dark, mystic, and symbolic. Looking back on it now it seems to me that the paintings are snippets of a visual journal from my subconscious mind. The works spawned from lots of self reflection, and though I didn’t know it at the time, they were attempts at working through and understanding my own mythology and psyche. “Face to Face” is my most recent painting, and may be the last of this little series of work. After completing “Dont’ Trust The Angels, They May Be Devils in Disguise,” I couldn’t understand what it was that I was doing, or where I was going. The content and imagery felt really dark and I was ready to come back to some colour. “Face to Face,” this painting above, was heading in that direction. It was the light at the end of the rabbit hole that I had gone down a few months prior. However, which side of the hole I’m on right now I’m not quite sure, but at least there is enough light for me to see again.
Here is my latest piece. This painting comes from a really loose sketch that I did a couple of months ago. It was a bit of a painful project to carry out in the sense that it didn’t feel as though it was coming together very well as the painting progressed. It also left me in a bit of an existential place, wondering what it is I am trying to achieve, not only in this work, but in my recent direction artistically. I had decided to finish it none the less as I felt the responsibility to the initial idea. I’m still slightly baffled by it and what it could mean, but perhaps there is some power to this ambiguity. So with great hesitation, I present my latest painting, “Don’t trust the Angels, they may be Devils in Disguise.”