Artist Proof Interview with Artist: Luis Diaz
Global Location: Miami, FL USA
AP Shop URL: http://www.zazzle.com/luisdiazart
Diaz worked as an illustrator and graphic designer for television, print, video games and other interactive media for more than 10 years. He has won acclaim from ImagineFX and CITY LINK Magazine, and created over 40 paintings for the new Garbage Pail Kids and Wacky Packages. A graduate of The Maryland Institute, College of Art (MICA).
AP: How long have you been making art for and what lead you to start.
LD: I always drawn as a kid and loved collecting comic books and trading cards. I was always fascinated by the nature of printed things. I dreamed of having my artwork printed in trading cards, magazines and books. That is what led me to painting and illustrating.
AP: Where do you currently live and work ω And how does this influence your work.
LD: I live in a large city that excels in making stars and breaking them. It’s a hard place to live with all the new trends and your 5 “seconds” of fame.
AP: Did you have formal training if so whatω If your self taught can you tell us what you prefer about being a self taught artist vs having formal training.
LD: I think all artists that go to school were self taught initially, but some decided to go to school. I think its very daring to go to art school and really not knowing if the education you receive will benefit you at the end. It was a good experience, but I learned more about myself as a person than as an artist. I went away to school as a kid and came back as a man. I learned to paint after school.
AP: Can you tell us about where you make your work is it in your house, a studio etc.. and how it effects your work.
LD: I change every year or so it seems. I was in two studios this year and recently moved to a big house. I get easily distracted by noises and people wondering around so I needed to work from home. So I now share my home studio with my girlfriend Liza Sylvestre who is an amazing artist herself. I have learned so much from working along side her. I recommend artists to work with other artists as long as they help your creative process.
AP: What are some of you favorite design projects/exhibitions you have worked on to date.
LD: I had an illustration show last year that really opened my mind to what I can do as an artist. I created a piece of artwork that was 18 feet across by 5 feet and it was nothing, but words about how the economy has affected me as an artist. I received a lot of attention from fellow artists and people who were touched by what I wrote. I also sold the piece to a big art collector in Downtown Miami. One of the best experiences I have had to date.
AP: What is your medium of choice.
LD: I like everything. I love ink, drawing, painting both traditional and on the mac. I think drawing is just the easiest form of communicating thoughts so if I had to say one that would be it.
AP: What is the relationship between technique and content in your work.
LD: I focus on content. On story. On narration. Those are number one. Technique is just the style you choose to express the idea. The style is like the exterior of an automobile. The idea is the spark in the engine. Without it. It can’t run.
AP: Who are some of the artists that have inspired you and or your work.
LD:It’s hard. Over the course of my career I can spot many artists or inspirations that made me want to go down this path. I love Garbage Pail Kids so that was one of the firsts. In high school it was comic books with monsters. and later Simon Bisley and Brom were the dagger that drove it home.
AP: In what direction would you like to see your work going over the next five years.
LD: I think I haven’t explored any general focus in my art mostly because I became an illustrator. What I realized later was that I am really a fine artist. I suck at deadlines and dealing with clients. I am more of a painter and idea maker. I want to explore those things that have been sitting in my head for ages. I still have yet opened that door.
AP: What forth coming projects and or exhibitions do you have scheduled for 2012.
LD: I decided to tackle one of my first loves so I’m going back to the hear of story telling: comic books. I plan to make some interesting stories next year with my comic book partner, Ricardo Porven.
AP: Take us on a guided tour through a day in your life as an artist.
LD: I wake up before noon, check my emails and eat breakfast/lunch. I walk my dog, Bubba to the park by my house. Most times I sketch in bench for about an hour. I don’t get a chance to do lot of my own stuff when I do illustration assignments so drawing in my sketch book keeps me sane. After that I begin my day working on illustrations and commissions. When it’s evening I pick up my girlfriend from work and we eat dinner. We watch an hour of a movie or show and then both of us get to work on some art until 2 or 3 in the morning. Most often than a not I stay up until 6am and then go to sleep. Rinse and repeat.
AP: Thank you so much for taking the time to answer our questions.