I have a couple of questions that build off of each other. The first being: do you still draw traditionally? In high hopes in the belief that you still do, I'd like to also know what you think about the growing digital age concerning the arts.
It’s very rare that I touch traditional mediums. The fast-paced world I live in doesn’t have the breathing room to let oil paint dry and though I have largely transitioned to the digital medium—much of what I do here is built off of and even designed to feel like my roots in classical painting. Working digitally has a stigma to it like any “new” medium but it’s the purists that keep those going. Some people still swear by typewriters for writing or film for cameras and there is nothing wrong with that—the word “classic” exists for a reason. Some things invented are just so good that they hold up for centuries or even longer.
However, for me—it’s those classics we look back to as technology drives the next evolutions of the respective mediums (and creates new ones). Drawing a line digitally today looks, feels, and handles nearly identical to drawing a line with a pen. The difference is pixels to pigment and over time, the line between the two will continue to blur. This digital medium isn’t just a mimicry of old ways though. It may be able to do most of the same things—but it also synthesizes so many facets of it.
I used to hand cut, build, and stretch my own canvases. I spent hours before every painting mixing my paint palettes. I ruined countless articles of clothing. I inhaled way too much turpentine. Every painting had a preliminary drawing which I then had to transfer to canvas or panel, sometimes I had to set up wood+string grids, canvases needed to be primed, paint needed to dry between each layer, the list goes on and on of the “dirty” aspects of the traditional medium. Part of that tactile feel is what makes it great—but it’s so much time NOT making an image in order to eventually get to make one. Right now, I have infinite canvases clicks away, infinite brushes that never need cleaning, every color in the world at my finger tips, a new layer a press away, and it’s THAT part of the digital medium that I find so great—all the waiting is gone—and it’s all about the creation. I get to paint the moment I want to paint, and from there—the medium is irrelevant.
I think of the digital age of art like this:
Writing an email is technically no different than writing a letter. The former I type then just click send and the latter I hand-write, stick in an envelope, write an address, buy stamps, put stamps on, drive to post office, place in mailbox, and wait x amount of days until that person gets it (assuming the post office doesn’t decide to screw you). It’s not like those things are massively difficult, but in the end—YOU are getting to digest the words I’ve crafted without the wait, and the only time I had to put into it was the actual content. Now let’s say that letter and that email each had 1000 words. A picture is how many of those again?