New Era Artist Feature: Volume 1

Working in Prepress at New Era I have the privilege to work with and look at original artwork from our New Era artists every day! I received degrees in Architecture
and in Art emphasizing in Graphic Design, so needless to say I love Architecture
and Art… and art of architecture is even better! This is why one of my
favorite New Era artists is Tatara. I was able to conduct an e-interview with
Tatara, below are the questions and answers.

Q: Your watercolors show dynamic culture, landscapes, architecture & cityscapes – what inspires you to paint these subjects?

A:  I rarely ask myself what I’m looking for when choosing this or that subject.  But once I am working I find that a sense of ideology reveals itself again and again, one that brushes over and blends all the many different details of a fractured world.  My images are in fact based on the reality of this world because I use photography as a tool.  The way a certain image is taken through the painting process, however, tends to bring out “the environment” of a setting.  And it is this part of a landscape that interests me.

Q: Do you paint your subjects in person, from memory or refer to a photograph?

A:  I began painting outdoors and on streets. This was exciting to be on location, having to stay focused amid the circulating distractions.  Now as I find myself spending more and more time on each piece, I take photographs and piece them together to recreate what it was like to be standing in that spot, all while painting inside my studio.

Q: How long have you been painting? How many pieces have you painted? Do you use other mediums besides watercolor?

A:  Though I have always enjoyed drawing with pencil, since my childhood even, I only began painting like I do now 15 years ago.  Watercolor seemed like an extension of drawing.  And now I am painting with oil, which for me has been the biggest step toward painting.

Troubled Guest TA173A, wall mural hung in our office gallery by my coworker, Brittney and myself


Q: Which piece that you painted is your favorite and why?

A:  Well, because I don’t really think of my work as individual, virtuoso-like creations, and rather as threads in a big fabric, I find this question difficult.  But if we look at “troubled guest” I see a good representation of all that interests me.  It is a
house, a very generic house, that has been taken over by streamers of toilet
paper.  It is a setting that has cultural undertones, but once removed, it
has a serenity reminiscent of the Indian sub-continent or of warm-hearted
laughter.  Altogether, the environment surrounding the object reaches from
paper edge to paper edge.

Original on the left, digital print file on the right inversed in Prepress.

Q: Your latest works have included painting in
inverse colors, how did you come up with this idea and is it difficult to paint
in this mode?

A: I stumbled upon this technique by looking at
snapshot negatives as an alternative figure/ground composition.  I found
what I needed in the negative, which then served as the subject of a
painting.  Once the painting was completed I recorded it in my inventory
like I do all my work.  But I had a simple curiosity which was to observe
the painting reversed back to its original color composition.  It seemed
full of possibilities because of the newness of layering watercolor upon an
ink-black substrate, becoming lighter and lighter, instead of the convention of
increased darkness. Is it difficult?  Only when you think about what you’re doing.

Hope you enjoyed getting to know one of our artists, stayed tuned for New Era
Artists: volume 2!



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