Description I have a fondness for sunsets, and sunset lighting and shadows. One thing I greatly miss of my childhood in Minnesota is the amazing sunsets. This piece was one of the most difficult to accomplish. I wanted to capture the moment when a wave has just receded. You can see that the sand still has a light film of water and in the upper right corner the sand is just beginning to dry as the water sinks into the sand. The rapidly sinking water forms a stain around the cluster of surrealistic shellfish that are laid together on the sand. The shells are made up of one of my ‘painted’ doodles of a strawberry. If you look at it closely, you can see the drawing itself. I multiplied the drawing many times and varied the size and the position to create strawberry-looking shellfish. This piece is significant in my collection because it is the first time I use a drawing to create a 3D object as well as the wet sand illusion and the sunset lighting. If you look at my artwork you will notice the one consistency is the lack of consistency. I try to make each piece different from all the others. With each piece I try something new and try to learn something in the process making each piece a process of self discovery.
Mark Sellers, Abu Dhabi, UAE Member Since November 2008 Artist Statement My gallery is mostly photographs but my pride and joy are the artwork you will find dispersed throughout.
My photographic collection has grown to outnumber my artwork. One of the benefits of being a teacher in the Middle East is the shorter distances to interesting places. Plus, part of our benefit package is to get tickets for an annual trip to our home countries or elsewhere, so we have been all over the place. I look for those artistic captures that would look good in my gallery. One of my favorite places for camera fodder is Singapore and Bali. My kids and wife have turned out to have a good photographer's eye as well and I have added some of their best shots. Most of the photographs in my gallery are from the USA (primarily North Atlantic states), Atlantic Canada, Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates, and some European countries.
Though I am very happy with the gallery photograph collection, I am especially proud of my digital artwork. For my artwork, the drawing is the thing. Though some of my pieces are completely digital, most of my artwork is probably different in a number of ways from the artwork you are used to. Usually an artist starts with a prepared canvas and then proceeds to create a painting that fills up that space. My approach has to be a bit opposite of that. I start with a completed drawing, transform it digitally and then have to create a background to fit it.
My art is a bit of a hybrid since it is not completely digital. I have long had a hobby of making simple random pen drawings that I then paint with gel pens. Gel ink painting in my gallery are made from these quickly made spontaneous expressionist doodle drawing. Some of them turn out purely abstract while others end up looking like representations of something.
These spontaneous expressions are scanned, cleaned up, and then transformed and finished digitally. I use a number of software titles to create the effects. The effects of the programs become my paint brushes.
When you look at my gallery, consider that each item takes a minimum of 6 hours to make, usually takes more than 10 and some take more than 30. The drawings go through a range of transformation. Some of them are clearly still drawings. Others are transformed into something new such as metal sculptures. A very small number are morphed beyond recognition. You’ll notice my use of colors.
I tend to use very bright colors and often contrast them, even clash them sometimes. You’ll also notice that every piece seems to very different from the next.
Each piece is a challenge for me to do something different that I have not done yet. I make an effort to make each piece unique. The focus of each piece is the drawing and how I choose to interpret it. Since each drawing has a unique personality and a completely different interpretation, the end product is then going to look different from any other piece I’ve made. This inconsistency ends up showcasing my creatively in a powerful way.
Strangely, I'm an artist 'by accident'. I've always been generally very creative and imaginative, and visual art is something I've recently 'grown into'. I've always loved color. I have no favorite color -- I love them all. I've always doodled to maintain focus. My doodles quickly developed into extremely detailed drawings that have gotten a lot of attention. Some of my most interesting pieces are among those I made early on.
Digital art for me is a way of 'sharing' something interesting of myself that has developed naturally without any formal training.
I am married with three daughters and I am American, but I live and work in the United Arab Emirates as a university English teacher. In a way I am a kind of American export. I have been here since 1998 and before that I was working in Indonesia. My childhood in Minnesota as well as all my experiences in Africa and various Asian countries have greatly influenced my work.