I don’t pretend to know a lot about art. I’m not an artist. Though at certain times in my life I attempted to be. I’ve tried my hand at panting, photography, drawing, etc. and I can tell you that I am absolutely no good at it. But it’s art like Greg Spalenka’s that has always sparked that urge in me. The urge to at least try it out. So yes, I don’t know a lot about art, but I can appreciate it and I do know what I like about it.
I was lucky enough to be sent Greg Spalenka’s new book, The Art of Greg Spalenka: Visions From the Mind’s Eye. Reading through it I was able to learn a bit about his history with art, his process for making it and how he was able to go from a young boy sketching on his bed to the amazing artist he is now. Having worked with multiple magazines, doing pieces on athletes, to illustrating the pages with pictures of war, famine, abuse. He has been the concept artist on some amazing movies such as The Ant Bully, Escape From Planet Earth, and The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader. All of which he showcases in his book. He also has a few really cool pictures of Death and Delirium in there for all you Sandman lovers out there.
In the book he talks about how he started out as an artist and his influences. How his art was born from two different worlds, and how he was strongly influenced by the Catholic faith having grown up in that environment. It’s amazing to me how an artist can look at things so differently than most people. How he can talk about the flickering flame on a candle and make it dance in your mind, but when I look at a candle, I just see a candle. It goes to show how an artists mind is one of the most amazing and valuable things in the world. Some of my favorite pieces that are shown in the book are the Faerie Lotus and Art Heart, and though I’m not a fan of sports, his Sugar Ray Leonard and Mike Tyson pieces are phenomenal.
Greg Spalenka’s work takes on so many different qualities. The truths that he is able to capture in his portraits is amazing, his photography is brilliant, but to me his Goddess’s and the Flowers of Fortune paintings really spoke to me. There’s just something magical about them. Just looking through his book makes you really appreciate all that an artist has to give. Sometimes you don’t realize how much of an effect art has on your life, but could you honestly imagine life without it?
You can pick up The Art of Greg Spalenka: Visions From the Mind’s Eye at most book stores or online. You can also order it from the Titan Books website here.