Starting 2019 w/ Soul- PART 2: MARVIN GAYE
**MARVIN GAYE Mixed Media 20x20 Inches Limited Edition Poster
Returning to Pop Culture themed portraits as of late has been extremely exciting and rewarding. To enrich the experience even further as I begin the new year, I thought it would be best to explore some new musical artists I admire and incorporate them, subjectively, into my more familiar mix. Having covered many of the classic greats of soul/pop/R&B and funk, I decided with my latest project to tackle a figure I haven't done before: MARVIN GAYE. Of all the soul artists I admire and have done portraits of, MARVIN GAYE is one that I started to listen to and appreciate later in the game, but just like all the others, left a lasting impression that ultimately translated into a strong piece of visual art.
I first became acquainted with MARVIN GAYE after I picked up a copy of his classic album "What's Going On" on vinyl. His joyful delivery, optimistic tone, and beautiful songwriting made me a fan immediately. While I have less knowledge about MARVIN GAYE and his life than I do many of the other artists I've covered, (ie. Prince, Michael Jackson, Otis Redding) what I do know of his music, and have seen in live performances and photographs familiarized me enough to feel inspired and confident to emulate his inviting spirit and presence via a portrait.
Most of the time I tackle portraits of artists I know well because I feel the backstories of the characters, the art they've made, and the details of their lives, seem to add more colour and passion to the final artwork. While it isn't an essential ingredient to the making of a great portrait, I always feel the insight adds a little purpose and poignancy to the execution of the art. That being said, however, sometimes knowing less about a subject prevents the perfectionist inside myself from being over analytical. In the case of this particular project, knowing less and coasting on a general impression of the man and his music not only proved to be more than enough, but also proved to be a refreshing asset. If anything, the process of making the art only fuelled my desire to learn more about MARVIN GAYE's life and music. As time goes on, I will look forward to and enjoy the journey, and likely turn the journey into the creation of more art. In the meantime, I have captured a simple and effective head portrait of one of the soul greats.
I intend to feature this portrait in my display at the upcoming Pancakes & Booze Art show at the end of Feb. I hope it will receive from positive attention from viewers, followers and fans alike or inspire some commissioned projects in the same theme later in the year.