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 13 – Artist Interview – Marty Knop

This week I interviewed Marty Knop. His exhibit was pretty interesting. The name of the exhibit was pretty hard to pronounce, Icosikaihenagon. Don’t know what that means but his exhibit had a lot of print art. Marty loves math, and who knew that you could contribute math into art by not only shapes, but formulas. He stated, “When you know a lot of math, you can turn it into a lot of different things and make new stuff using it as an element.” I thought of this statement to be very interesting because I never would have thought that math and art could go hand and hand. He uses a computer program to create his art. He wanted to do something and express math in an artistic type of way. Which I thought was pretty cool. Knop says that because there are infinite solutions for infinite math problems, it becomes necessary to have a database for them. He started out experimenting with simple geometric shapes such as triangles and used mostly black and white color. He started using random patterns because he says they are much more interesting than say a checkerboard pattern. Knop says that a lot of his viewers do not comprehend what his art means or what is the story behind his masterpieces, but he says that’s the point. He wants his viewers to think outside the box. Even though many of his pieces do not necessarily have a specific meaning he would the viewers them to continue to think, which is something we all have to do in math, non-stop thinking. After seeing Knop’s work, the wide, random array of colors incorporated was very noticeable. Curious if he chose the colors at random or if there was a process in choosing which colors to use, I asked him how he chose the colors. He responded saying that he generally bases his color choices on cost effectiveness, given that some colors are more expensive than others. But also, he said that with digital printing, the color choices are endless so he must limit himself for coherence. A process he described was that he would have 3 different color choices at 3 different areas of a piece to see what fits. On the larger paintings it took him up to about 3 weeks to complete, while the smaller ones, obviously it took him less time. He added that generally, it requires a week for him to print the piece and to see how it looks and another two weeks for other artistic considerations. These considerations may include making changes in the use of color, design, or shape. I particularly enjoyed hearing his explanation on the meaning of his art, which helped me understand that some art, though it may be for generally aesthetic purposes, it is that goal to create an aesthetically stimulating piece that is its message.

Wk 12 – Artist Interview – Piet Eppinga

The gallery was full of life-sized, beautiful sculptures of earthy human-like figures. Instead of the artist being outside behind a table to answer questions, he actually gave me and few other classmates a walk through of his gallery.  He explained his interpretation of each sculpture and explained what it was made of and the meanings behind the design.  He also said that his sculptures were up for our interpretation, too.  Ideas developed and he worked to sculpt his ideas but then more pop up and tries to include all of his interpretations and ideas into his art.  Piet has a Caucasian heritage but his art was diverse and multicultural as he lives in a multicultural society and needs to incorporate the different cultures and subcultures into his art, otherwise it would cause segregation.  Piet also just started sculpting in 2008. He owns a house in north of Long Beach, where I live, and it is big enough to where he can fit all of his life-sized sculptures in his home. During Piet’s second employment to Iraq, his buddy told him to use the GI Bill.  So he did and came to CSULB.  He started off taking welding classes and then the polish wheel because he though it was pretty cool.  His ceramics teacher told him that he could be good at ceramics if he went for it.  He took the teacher’s advice and now he is an amazing sculptor.  He also wants to be a kindergarten-12th grade art teacher one day.

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 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 7 – Artist Interview – Clare Samani

This week for my artist interview, I interviewed Clare Samani. Clare enjoys working with prints, the printing process is an art that most people might not know about. But after seeing Clare’s amazing work, I think it should be noticed more. She works in both color and non-color depending on what piece of work she is doing and what mood she is trying to display with that piece of work. It took Clare a great amount of time to finish her art, she said it took her six hours to print, one of her least favorite parts of the process. She wasn’t very talkative so there is not much to say about her but overall, Clare’s work was really impressive and it suited the showcases theme very well.