We welcome in California-based oil painter Chad Pierce who helps us ring in the summer with his hyper-realistic take on a summertime favorite with Red & Yellow. Slow down and read on and as Pierce gives us the low down on these masterfully layered oil paintings, pulled from his ongoing water gun series. . .
1xRUN: Tell us a little bit about this series, anything immediate you would like us to highlight about this image?
Chad Pierce: My inspiration for painting this series of water guns oil paintings depends on what idea, experience, or emotion I’m trying to represent. It could be as simple as the end of the day or the sun setting and the beauty of light. This particular piece was inspired by slowing down and taking it easy.
1x: Was this image part of a recent theme, series or show that you had?
Pierce: This image is part of an ongoing series of water gun paintings. It fits into the continued theme of these still life oil paintings and traditional style of using a reference, but are more conceptual rather than representational.
1x: When was this piece created and what materials were used?
Pierce: The materials used to create this original piece was stretched gesso primed canvas and oil paint. The original painting was created in 2015.
1x: Tell us how the idea and execution came about for this image?
Pierce: As a part of the water gun series I was inspired by the idea that I needed to slow down much like traffic stop colors yellow and red lights.
1x: How long did each of this image take to create from start to finish?
Pierce: I don’t normally keep track of hours or time with oil paintings because there is a lot of dry time and layering that needs to happen and I typically work on a few paintings at one time.
1x: What is unique about this piece compared with your other work?
Pierce: This piece was unique as far as other water gun paintings I’ve done because of the transparent plastic illusion and depth created with the lighting this piece had.
1x: Why should people buy this one of these prints?
Pierce: People should buy one of these prints because it was a pivotal point in this water gun series and shows this technique of creating the depth and realism of the plastic and lighting.
1x: Describe this image in one gut reaction word.
Pierce: Slow Down.
1x: When did you first start making art? What was your first piece?
Pierce: I still have one of my first drawings I did at age three of a Tad Pole. Some of my earliest memories are going to the library as a young kid and checking out how to draw books of dinosaurs. My first oil painting was a still life I attempted with my friend who was studying art. It was extremely challenging having never used oils. I was hooked from that day on.
1x: What artists inspired you early on? What artists inspire you now?
Pierce: Growing up I was inspired by comics, toys, and skateboard graphics. I didn’t visit a museum or gallery until I was in college. I really liked the color and simplicity of Wayne Theibaud’s paintings. [Now] I can’t really think of an artist that inspires me, but more extremely technical artists that can create hyper realist paintings especially artists that use high reflective surfaces.
1x: Do you listen to music while you work? If so what?
Pierce: Yes usually a random playlist of different genres, lately a lot of Townes Van Zandt and The Tallest Man On Earth.
1x: If you could collaborate with any living artist who would it be and why?
Pierce: It would be fun to collaborate with an artist who also does transparent imagery or reflective materials and sculptures.
1x: What was the first piece of art that you bought? Do you still have it? The last?
Pierce: I don’t remember his name but he created multiple paintings really fast in a line. He set up boards on easels and would paint a little bit of the same image a few brush stroke at a time on each. Then would move down the line. He wasn’t even charging for the painting he just asked for a donation when you exited his performance at the gallery. The last piece I bought was a UFO sculpture made of old car parts from an artist in Southern California.
1x: Any big shows or events coming up that you’d like to share?
Pierce: I have a few coming up. I have a group show in Philadelphia on July 7th with Archenemy arts. Another group show in Aneheim called Artists Republic curated by Trekell Art Supplies on Oct 28. One more in New York called ChrisRWK and Friends at My Plastic Heart opening July 14th.