This month's Artist of the Month is Greg Bromley, who is inspired by Cosmology and mindfulness. We've asked him a few questions about his work and life as an artist.
When and how did your interest in art develop?
As a child I doodled and created drawings of futuristic warring factions; I was probably influenced by the 2000AD, Scream and Star Wars comics. I would lose myself for hours during periods of drawing, with characters and settings becoming increasingly more sophisticated as I got towards my teens.
Unfortunately, I lost my way a bit during my late teens and early twenties, going from job to job and embracing ‘mind bending’ experiences. It was only after completing my degree that I started to express my art self again, working in black ink on white paper and occasionally having the odd Jackson Pollock moment in my back garden throwing acrylic paint around like a ‘Tasmanian devil.’
During my thirties I would occasionally experience a creative burst and focus on one of my incredibly detailed and time consuming black and white drawings. However, over the last 2 years, for some inexplicable reason, my artistic side has exploded and become part of my very life-force!
What influences your art?
The Multiverse, Galactic Wormholes and Interdimensional beings…
No, really, as an Atheist I have looked to Cosmology and Mindfulness for my Spiritual needs. My interest in learning about Cosmology has now started to influence my art; as has further consideration of theoretical and quantum physics. Other elements which I consider to be an influence on my art are: Existentialism, Atheism, Mediaeval Art, Raw Vision Magazine/Juxtapoz, Surreal Art, Maori and Aborigine Art, Tribal Art, Animals, Storytelling, Humour, Visionary Art, Horror Vacui, Sci-fi and Lowbrow Art.
Additionally, I have struggled with stress during my career in social work, and professional exposure to harrowing narratives of the job has influenced my journey of escapism through the artistic process.
What process do you go through when you are creating a piece?
The coloured paintings are technically protracted pieces involving collage from prints of my original drawings. I build up backgrounds by the liberal mixing of acrylics, pencil and oil pastels. I work the final detail in with acrylic pens and finish with a gloss. I always prepare some rough sketches prior to ‘painting’ of where I want to go, and I develop a narrative as the piece starts to form.
Ultimately I want to escape from the mundane and the humdrum; you will never, ever see me paint a traditional landscape!
Which artists, if any, have you drawn inspiration from?
The list is huge. I guess Miro, Picasso, Kandinsky, Hundertwasser, Basquiat and Bosch are hugely inspirational, but the more contemporary work of Jesse Reno, Fernando Chamarelli and Joe Fenton equally inspire. Other artists that inspire are Irving Norman, Jim Flora, Auguste Herbin, Zio Ziegler, Victor Brauner and Augustin Lesage.
What do you hope the viewer gets from your work?
I hope the viewer feels the escapism, gets lost in the detail of the images and enjoys the narrative. I hope the viewer also feels the wonder of the cosmos and the excitement I feel in trying to express theoretical concepts through the images.
What has been the highlight of your artistic career?
Ha ha ha this! Unfortunately, the life of a 42 year old ‘outsider’ artist has not been littered with success/awards/adulation, so to be artist of the month is an honour. I guess selling a few pieces this year has also been a highlight.
Has being a part of outside in been beneficial for you? If so, how?
Absolutely, having this opportunity has been a benefit, if only for the recognition that what I do has an audience. Certainly the online gallery feels like a genuine internet presence.
What's next for you as an artist?
I would love the opportunity to exhibit; have paintings will travel. Furthermore, I will be looking to continue with my Multiverse painting series and develop my blog narrative over the coming winter months (in between working full-time as a social worker and Jack Russell owner).