Bill Carman is an artist, a very fine Fine Artist. He is an illustrator, too, a very unique one. He is different, strange, sometimes a little weird, he is funny, but at the same time he can be deadly serious. No matter whether he is creating pictures for a gallery show, or for a children’s book, he is always the same, whole, recognizable, himself and brilliant.
As far as I am concerned, his work stands for honesty and being yourself, for daring to openly and publically dream your dreams through your pictures. And although these “visual dreams” are reflecting Bill’s personal mental and emotional landscape, they are in their essence yet another emanation of the same, hard to express symbolic language of the subconscious that we all share. This, perhaps more than any other quality of his work (and they are many) makes him a true artist.
I have been in galleries pretty much since I graduated 8,124 years ago. After school, the recurring theme with my work seemed to be, “Oh, I love it but how can I use it.” Hence galleries became the immediate default route. Because I had some ability I continued to do illustration but the gallery world always sucked me back in. The latest version of that sucking is the result of what I believe to be a natural development in the art world; the recognition of image based work (again) as a marketable commodity for wall space.
|Could have used a painting example much cooler than mine but this is my post after all|
|My take on Rom|
After that fairly positive experience things seemed to steamroll. The next show was in LA and it was a comic book character of choice. I chose The Main Man.
The show that really turned up the heat was Terrible Yellow Eyes a Maurice Sendak tribute organized by Cory Godbey. It was held in conjunction with the movie release.
The Sendak show generated a lot of publicity and my work was seen all over. Theme shows started to pile up.
He-Man (How could one say no to this?)
Twilight Zone (Didn’t need to think long about this)
A blockbuster Alice in Wonderland show coinciding with the Burton movie.
There were more, and more I had to turn down but the result was people in big cities and all over the cyber realm saw my work. Seeing my work led to buying my work, which is a good sign that someone will give you a show. They no longer say, “I love your work (well they thankfully still say this), but what do I do with it?” they just put me in a show and let the public decide. So now I get to sit in my wonderful studio, living much like an art hermit and paint things like this:
|"Amended: Albino Narwhal Synchronized Swimming Doping Law"|
|"Batgirl and Batsquid Ride Batpug as Batbat Leads the Way"|
- Be honest, work hard and your unique voice will find you.
- Be ready if the opportunity comes.
- Find where you belong. (Personally my most difficult thing)
- Reward your viewers. Gallery work is about presence. The image should, of course, look great in print or on screen but when it arrives at the gallery people should gasp, swoon, and faint. Surface, presence, craft all work toward making not simply a picture but an object. So even if your work is digital how do you make it stand out among all the other prints on the wall as something that should be on a wall?