"Interview with David DeRosa, artist"
What do you love about being an artist?
Wow. Went right for the jugular there, didn’t ya? Humph. This is a hard question to answer without either coming off as pretentious or crazy or both -- BUT here goes. I love slipping out of reality… of cutting myself loose of the tether of my everyday and letting the madness take me where it will. It’s freedom in the purest sense of the term. More than that, it’s an altered state of consciousness that transcends above the banality of mere existence, thereby allowing me the chance to tap into something that’s almost god-like. It’s the only place where I feel a true sense of oneness and connectivity, which is why I tend to be awkward in person. I’m just biding my time until I can get back in front of my easel and let go...
What is the creative process like for you?
Therapy. Truly. Mixing paint… organizing my brushes and prepping a fresh panel… laying out my drawing… making sure I’m saying what I feel I ought to be saying and then analyzing whatever particular color harmony I’m going for… It’s like mentally hitting the reset button.
What inspires you to create your “POP Impressionism” while still holding to the traditional painting techniques set by the old masters?
I never set out with some kind of grand plan to specifically create the work I create the way I create it. I just follow my instinct and let the piece tell me what it needs. It wasn’t until I looked back on those early paintings and considered my influences that I put on my marketing hat and finally gave it a name.
Do your paintings ever surprise you when they are finished?
Yes, no and sometimes. Sometimes an idea is vague and I have to knead it a while before it takes shape. In which case, yes the outcome can be quite surprising. Other times, I can see the idea clearly on the panel before I even get the paint down so then no; I’m not surprised at all. But recently, I have been working more organically, letting the elements of my paintings come to fruition unsupervised. Put simply; sometimes I see it coming and sometimes I don’t.
I know that you’re an avid reader and a music aficionado. Does a certain song or book ever influence your work?
With books, usually, no. Not unless I’ve been charged with an illustration. In which case the process is very cut and dry: Translate the key point of a story into an all encompassing image… hopefully, without spoiling the end. Music, on the other hand, is art’s conjoined twin. Without one, I can’t do the other. When I’m painting, I play whatever music I feel compliments the piece. Is it spiritual? Then get me some classical, like Beethoven or Rachmaninoff. Diving into pure color and design? Mingus. Davis. Reinhardt. Making some social commentary? Black flag. Social D. Rage Against the Machine. My playlist is FREAKY huge, like nearly almost kinda infinite.
Who are your heroes?
Michelangelo. Caravaggio. Rodin. Mucha. Coles Phillips. J.C. Leyendecker. Dali. Bill Alexander… Hey! Someone should totally make artist cards! Y’know, like baseball cards? Only way cooler.
Tell us a little bit of what’s in the future for David DeRosa?
I shook up the magic eight ball and all it said was: “Ask again later.”
What advice would you give beginning artists?
Have a point. Be honest, be articulate. Also, paint is toxic -- don’t lick your brushes.
If you had a super power, what would it be?
(The images really didn't translate very well. For a better view, please check out David's website: www.artprimadonna.net)