Featured Interview | Graypaint
Real Name: Kevin Gray
Links / Websites: http://artpal.com/graypaint
TWIT: supasaiyankevin on twitter
Brief description of self: I’m a young black man trying to make a living from what I love.
Long Description of self: I’m 29 years old, born and raised in the 757 (Hampton/Newport News), and I’ve been doing art in one way or another since before I could remember. Creating art has always been a way to keep myself busy, challenged, and above all else happy. Music and nostalgia are probably my biggest influences and inspirations for my artwork.
Project Description: june june and jimbo aka “boy swalluh dem bones” – This is a cubist type portrait of eight year old me struggling to swallow fish bones. In the bottom left corner is a bottle of Texas Pete hot sauce, which was a necessity in my family’s house then and now.
Medium & why: I used acrylic paint because that’s what I am most comfortable with and I was also on a time crunch.
The most challenging part of the process: Honestly starting is the hardest part for me. Sometimes I psych myself out when sketching the base but once I get started my nerves calm down as what’s in my brain becomes possible on the canvas.
Inspiration of this creation: I submitted this piece to the Virginia Museum of Contempary Art for their Food and Memory exhibit. I was inspired by eating fish that my great granddad June June and great uncle Jimbo used to catch. Filleting wasn’t an option so it was either starve, or man up and swallow or spit out the fish bones.
Other creative influences: I like to mix and blend music. My finished ones can be found on Soundcloud under DJ 7-11.
How creativity betters my life: It gives me a sense of purpose, security, and the satisfaction I feel after every completed project can’t be topped.
Advice to other aspiring artists: My advice to any artist out there is to continue doing whatever kind of art makes you happy, but don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and challenge yourself.
Testimonial: “Art is what you can get away with.” —Andy Warhol