Artist Statement

Artist Statement
Ty Forehand

I have always been captivated by the interaction between nature and humans, both positive and negative.  I find a great deal of peace and inspiration when I look at different aspects of nature. I tend to gravitate towards a lot of surfing influences in my work.  Surfing, much like creating art, is another way to escape from everyday chaotic aspects of life, a way to clear my mind and put life into perspective.     Another very common feature in my work are butterflies.  I tend to stop whenever I see a butterfly and appreciate the moment of beauty and grace that they show.  It is hard to imagine a grown man doing so, but it is something everyone should take in.   I would love to focus mainly on those positive influences of what I see in the outside world but sometimes there are situations, like the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010, that have caused me to take a step back and explore the harsh negative side as well.  It is very disheartening to see how irresponsible humans can be towards innocent beings that are not able to defend themselves to some of our actions.

I try to stay consistent in the creation of my work so that each piece will flow well with one another, no matter what the content might be.  Throughout all of my works, I rely on organic free flowing lines, with varying weights to help with a sense of movement, as well as the use of stippling to create texture and depth.  All of which are very evident in the surfing influenced screen prints.  Leaving the human figure as a silhouette enables the line work to take a more important influence and presence overall.  I wanted to give the viewer an opportunity to see themselves in the work and imagine the rush of dropping in on one of the most exhilarating and peaceful experiences one can have.  In my drawings about the oil spill, I came up with the idea to incorporate actual oil into the work.  It was very interesting to see how the oil takes on a life of it’s own and spreads with each day that passes, much like the oil itself in the Gulf.  In stark contrast to my drawings and screen prints, where the work revolves around the use of black as the primary color, the use of color in my paintings are a staple.  I have always wanted my paintings to set themselves apart on a typical neutral wall color and what better way than to use vibrant color?  It gives the piece a presence when someone enters the room and they are automatically drawn to it.  Where my message in my drawings and screen prints are rather clear, I tend to leave my paintings more vague and open-ended so that each viewer can develop their own personal interpretation.

Opposite Ends is the vast separation between the influences of humans and nature.   I really hope these pieces touch and inspire everyone like they have me.  My intention is that they might instill positive change in everyday lives to establish an awareness and appreciation of the world around us.


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