Wk 15 – Artist Interview – Elia Murray

The exhibit that I went to this week was part of the 2015 BFA Illustration/Animation Senior Show. It was called “Drawn out.” It was filled with many unique artist. I happened to interview the great Elia Murray. Her art is influenced by her creatively charged environment. As Murray grew as an artist, she realized that her home and her family are what drive her artistic passion. She says the support from her family has sent her to where she is today.

When first coming to CSULB she was majoring to become an English teacher. Even though art was her passion she thought that it wouldn’t get her anywhere. Her mother watched her struggle with this life choice that she made and ended up forcing her to change her major into art. Now, Murray practices various forms of art, ranging from writing to sculpting fun, lively characters. She says she dreams of someday having one of her own characters come to life on the big screen.


Murray has spent over 5 years in school now and is happy and proud of all her accomplishments. I liked these particular characters. They were fun and different like something I don’t really see often. A lot of her other work sort of had a disney feel to it. I asked if she was ever intrested in working for Disney and she screamed, “YES!! That is a dream of mine.” She also said she had sent in her resume and application for an internship and is now waiting for a response.

Not only is she a great artist in illustration, she also writes short stories. She is finishing up one at the moment and is really excited. She is also working on a storyboard to write a book. Murray says its pretty scary if you don’t have a plan..

Interviewing Elia Murray was very interesting because she had a lot of aspects to her. She writes, she draws, and she sculpts. She is really the full package. I really hope Murray goes far in her career and I wish her nothing but the best!


Wk 14 – Artist Interview – Yireh Elaine Kwak

The exhibit that I went to this week was part of the Senior Painting/Drawing BFA Show. It was called “LIMINAL.” It was filled with many unique artist. I got the chance to interview the Yireh Elaine Kwak. Her art is influenced by her personal experiences. As Kwak grew as an artist, she realized that her home and her family are what drive her artistic passion. She practices various forms of art, ranging from studio art to musical art. The art piece behind her in the picture is one that was inspired by her home, which has a beautiful view of mountains. This painting is an oil painting and in my opinion is extremely detailed. I thought it was beautifully done. She says art is always changing so she’s always trying to change with it. Kwak mentioned that as an artist, a very important part of the creative process is being able to keep an open mind. Also to be comfortable with going along with different types of creative processes. Having loved and done art since childhood, Kwak is now majoring in drawing and painting. She has decided to take one year off of school after she graduates before returning for a Masters program. During her year off, she plans on working on her portfolio and doing smaller projects. Yreh Elaine Kwak is an amazing artist.

Wk 11 – Artist Interview – Gabriel Garcia

Gabriel Garcia’s show of Toxic Masculinity expressed so much more than just the words displayed in his pieces. It’s really cool to me that so many people are using their creative skills and talents to not only create art, but to create something that can really relay an important message to their audiences. It’s important that art can be enjoyed but on a whole other level I believe that it is such an accomplishment to have your work really get its viewers thinking about an issue that we see in today’s world, no matter how heavy it may be. In Garcia’s show, he displayed many of the issues that are going on around us everyday. Just on social media websites alone, I see posts about feminist driven issues multiple times a day. I think that feminists are viewed to be advocates of women’s rights only when really that’s not the case. It’s important that these issues are addressed for both women and men! Which is why I think it is very important to see a male artist addressing issues such as physical abuse, gender stereotypes and common phrases that may be relaying the wrong messages to our youth. Common sayings that we hear all the time that Garcia chose to point focus on consist of “Man Up”, “Don’t Be a Pussy”, “Don’t ______ Like a Girl”, etc. These give men certain expectations that they feel they must live up to in order to qualify as a “real man” which only affects them negatively. Garcia shared that he got the inspiration to create this show from a combination of personal experiences, news events that have occurred over the past year, and issues and ideas that are going on currently. These are all ideas that aren’t necessarily new and that we can all relate to and voice some sort of opinion whether we share our own personal experiences or have seen people we know affected. Some of Garcia’s pieces conveyed really clear messages and others were a lot less obvious. When he was asked about the drawing of the pig and what is was meant to represent, he asked right back what we thought it represented. After a long pause of an unanswered question, he shared that his idea behind it was to represent the culture that we live in that has grown to be one big consumerist culture. In the United States we are lucky enough to be able to consume pretty much whatever we want whenever we want and it has made us greedy. I would have never thought to use a pig to represent this issue but I think it’s brilliant and actually makes a lot of sense!

Wk 9 – Artist Interview – Michael Rollins

My artist interview for week 9 is Michael Rollins. Rollins’s artwork, in my eyes, are composed of different brush strokes on a canvas. His work looks like a mixture of different strokes with different colors because when he paints, he does not have any reverence material. So when he is painting, he does not have a set rule as to what he is allowed to to paint. This way he has the freedom and directness to paint what he feels like painting. Instinctive painting is what Rollins’s art is about. He just paints without having any restrictions to hold him back. With not only Instinctive painting, he also incorporates formal decision making. He uses Instinctive painting to express his personality while using formal decisions to connect something together. When he starts painting, he would experiment with his works. After a lot of experimenting and looking through his work, he would then find a starting point and style that he wants. Rollins has always had art in his life. Before being an artist, he was majoring in illustration at an art school. The reason why he was an illustration major was because he was afraid of the risk and uncertainty of being an artist. One day he say an artist himself, and was inspired to take the risk and become an artist. Being an artist brought him a lot of freedom in his life. He does not care about things and just does what he wants. Sometimes being an artist and working on your artwork requires you to sacrifice time with others.

In my opinion, I liked the mixture of different colors, but as for understanding art, I have trouble understanding the artwork. All I see are paint strokes on a canvas. I like it, but I don’t really understand the meaning. The only one who knows the true meaning is the artist himself.

Wk 8 – Artist Interview – Brian Davis “The Juicer”

This week I didn’t know which artist I wanted to interview. I was interviewing a classmate when my sister texted me that one of the artists was juicing. It was my first class of the day, and i haven’t ate anything, so I went to see what I can get into my tummy. When I walked into the gallery, I got this kind-of homey feeling. I see couches set up everywhere. At one corner of the room, there was a camera set up to take pictures of whatever you wanted, but at the far end of the room was were the crowd was at. Getting past the huge crowd, I finally seen what all the commotion was about. Brian Davis was make juice drinks for everyone! Being a college student, I like anything that is good and free. I was kind-of iffy about taking one of Brian’s drinks, he had all these vegetables and fruits on a table and her mixed both vegetables and fruit together to make his juices. At first I didn’t want any, but once he dropped some strawberries into that juicer, I grabbed a cup and I made sure that I was one of the first ones to get served. I thought the juice wouldn’t taste good because he had added lettuce with orange and some other vegetables, the juice was mainly made out of vegetables. But after adding the strawberries, everything seemed to even out and the juice tasted great! His main reason for juicing was to give nutrients to people to help boost their energy and make them feel better naturally. Brian wants to be at art hotels and juice for people as a living. He mainly wanted to do this in Greece until they had a bad turn in their economy. So now he is thinking about Maui and Italy. April 2nd, he will be moving to Italy, right outside of Sienna. I hope he has fun traveling and I hope one day he plans on coming back to juice again for us.

Wk 6 – Artist Interview – Alanna Marcelletti

This week, I was really fascinated with Alanna Marcelletti’s gallery. She uses canvases in her work, and painting, but she also uses clothing, towels, and things that she finds around her studio. When I was walking through her gallery and analyzing each piece, I got this sense of femininity. It wasn’t just the colors that were used but it was the materials and patterns like clothing and towels, and the using of pieces of furniture. It was quite hard to hear Alanna because of the large amount of people in her gallery, however I was able to get closer to hear what she was saying and what questions she was being asked. For each of her large pieces it took almost a month to make. The big pieces are telling stories while the small pieces are more intimate portraits of characters. I think the small pieces represents someone in her life since she did say that they were more intimate. The most challenging part about doing these portraits for Alanna how different they can look from different angles. I read her artist statement that she “embraces both positive and negative results of outside influences upon the individual psyche including societal pressures such as gender roles, the need to marry, and heeding the biological clock in a delicate balance while pursing career goals” but I wanted to know what was the message that she is trying to send to her audience. She said her message is her identity of being a woman, narrative, and the aspect of feminism in a domestic view. I thought that was a great message that she wanted to send because I was sensing some sort of femininity while looking her art. When I was looking at pieces, such as clothing, there was a domestic sense too. Alanna was always a rebellious artist, like painting on glass instead of canvases, and her advice to aspiring artist is always experiment and have fun. I think when experimenting new things, not just in art, you get the chance to get out your comfort zone and start looking at things in many different perspectives. I agree with what Alanna says about experimenting, you become a more understanding person because you’re trying something most people aren’t willing to try and trusting yourself.

Wk 5 – Artist Interview – Dianna Franco

When I peeped into one of the galleries, I noticed a lot of bright colors. I like bright colors so I walked in and was approached with more bold and dull colors that created such an amazing balance. The way the bold colors were painted in a form of something organic and natural, and the dull colors were painted as industrial. I thought it was amazing that the artist created a great balance of colors within each canvas. I was able to speak to the artist herself, Dianna Franco is the creator of these beautiful paintings. Her painting is based on the relationships between nature and civilizations found from micro to macro level in psychology and science. What fueled the idea of this exhibition is when she took a trip to the country side and noticed a difference from the city and the country side. Also, Dianna was inspired by the old buildings that are being consumed by nature, which was also from a movie that she seen that had nature taking over buildings. I thought it was really cool that she represented nature and civilization with these colors. Usually I would see artist use nature and civilization straightforward, that they want the observer to immediately get what’s going on in their paintings, but with Dianna’s painting it is the complete opposite. She uses her colors as symbolism, nature for bold and civilization for neutral. I thought it was even more interesting when she incorporated a psychological part to her exhibition. The bold colors not only symbolized nature but the brain and the heart, such as the brain waves from a brain scan or the veins from the heart. Dianna wanted her paintings to affect the moods of people when looking at her paintings. And she hopes to get the audience to feel the same way she does when she did these paintings. Dianna describes her paintings in this exhibition as siblings, I can see what she means by that. The paintings do like similar as to the patterns, but they each representing something different, just like siblings, they can have the same features from parents but they have different personalities. Speaking to Dianna about her paintings was great because she really enjoys talking to people about her art, what she get’s from it, and other people get from it too. She was very passionate talking about what she wanted people to think when looking at her work, and I thought it was beautiful. Dianna had this humble and bright vibe that she wants to make people feel happy, and I think that’s fascinating because most of the artist that I spoke to within the past weeks were too serious about their work and that they just don’t talk to you about it and just let their art and most of all their artist statements do the talking. But with Dianna, she lets herself and her art do the talking. I do hope to see her more often in the upcoming galleries.