Meet Mixed Media/Digital Artist Peter Kalabokis!
Q: Tell us a little bit about your background. Where are you from? Where did you study? How long have you been an artist?
A: An Illustrator since 1989, my clients have included Adirondack Life Magazine, Byte Magazine, Sun Expert Magazine, East West Journal, The Rising Sun Café, and the English rock band “HOUSE OF X” (former members of UFO and The Michael Schenker Group )
Over the years I primarily have been an editorial illustrator using watercolors and mixed media for my illustrations. My current work stems from that same formula of mixed media as a primer in which a digital image is the final result. I enjoy mixing the styles from my fine art education at Montserrat College (Beverly, MA) with my work experiences as a desktop publisher dealing with digital imagery.
Currently I have been working with Logo Design, Album Art, and works for private collectors.
Q: What is the first thing you remember making/creating by hand?
A: I was self taught in my art all the way up to my senior year in High School (where by the end of the year I was awarded the “Most Improved” award by my art instructor at Chelmsford High) I was always drawing when I was a kid and the first things that I remember doing was copying anything I saw. Magazines, game board covers, etc. Which gave the “feel” of using a pencil as well as the sense of line and shape.
Q: What do you love most about your art?
A: I love that, in the process, it takes a course of it’s own and becomes something different than what I first set out to do. I enjoy how the piece evolves while I’m working and teaches me something new.
Q: Describe a typical art creativity session. What is it like? For example, do you work in silence, or do you work to music? Do you prefer to be alone, or do you need people around?
A: I prefer to work alone while listening to music.
Q: Did you always know you wanted to make the art you make today? Did you start out in a different medium in the early days?
A: I was influenced by Degas while in college. I was always creating with pastels. Then came N.C. Wyeth, Winslow Homer, and Matt Mahurin as influences. By my senior year I was able to bring all those influences into my own style through a mixed media of pen and ink, water color, and colored pencil. Today I use Photoshop as a replacement for watercolor in my process.
Q: What advice do you have for someone just starting out as an artist?
A: People will always give you unwanted advice, critiques, etc. “Filter” what’s being said to you and keep what you feel will make you a better artist. There will always be someone better or worse than you so don’t compare. You want to have your own “voice” when you create a piece so don’t think of your work as better or worse than someone else’s. One flower is not “better” than an other flower. They’re all beautiful in their own way.
Q: Tell us about some of your goals for the next 6-12 months.
A: My goal for the next 6-12 months is to carve some time in my schedule to create a series of new work.
Q: What is your favorite thing about the arts community?
Camaraderie. We all have mundane “day jobs” that aren’t related to what we do as artists so we have that understanding and support to encourage each other.
Q: Do you have a big seller? What do you think people love about it? And be honest…are you tired of making it?
A: I’m no longer in the phase where I want to create something that’s a “seller”. Straight out of college I wanted that because I wanted to be a full time illustrator but now that I’m in my late 40’s I just want to create work on my own terms and let the rest be what it will be.
Q: Describe your favorite way to spend a Sunday morning.
A: Having the family together.
You can meet Peter and see more of his fantastic work on the First Saturday of each month, in his Studio A417 at Western Ave!