I remember being at a gas station at an early age and seeing a man with an eagle tattooed on his face underneath his eye near his cheek. I was frightened, and fixated at the same time. I had always been drawing and I had known about tattoos, but that was the first tattoo that I really remember.
A few years later I had a near death experience where i was stuck by a car while walking my bike through my school crosswalk. This accident was the catalyst that solidified my life as an artist. I was only ten years old and had essentially hit the reset button. Visual art from that point on was my primary mode of expression.
A few years later I began to tattoo, and take whatever art classes I could. Life drawing, and more specifically quick pose gesture drawing, is what i gravitated towards. I used wax crayon on newsprint, but the newsprint wasn’t archival so I had to try and find an alternative surface with the same attributes . This is what led me to start drawing on plastic drafting film. The surface was smooth like newsprint, but it was even better. This plastic, unlike canvas or paper, is semi-translucent, which means I can draw on both sides and achieve atmospheric perspectives.
I had tattoo ink available in the studio, so one day I decided to add it to my wax crayon drawings – the combination of wet and dry mediums is the reason why I call my artwork “Brush Drawings”.
The aesthetic qualities of these brush drawings show my influences of gesture drawing , tattooing and my love of academic portraiture.
In my most recent body of work “cartomancy”, I attempt to personify constellations and celestial bodies with the female form, much like Alphonse Mucha’s personifications of the seasons.
All Images Are © Shay Bredimus
Shay Bredimus Artist Bio
A figurative painter and renowned tattoo artist, Bredimus employs languid and gestural marks using tattoo ink on drafting film to portray spontaneous and personal moments of his models. His classical training in portraiture is evident, to which he has added aesthetic influences from Japanese tattoo and Ukiyo-e prints.
A survivor of a traumatic brain injury that occurred at age ten Bredimus relates, “After the accident visual language became my first language and primary mode of expression, solidifying my life in the visual arts”.
Shay Bredimus earned an MFA in 2008 from the Laguna College of Art and Design in Laguna, California and a BFA in painting from Emily Carr University in Vancouver, Canada in 2004. He has studied under mentors F. Scott Hess and Wes Christensen, among others. His work was featured in two solo exhibitions at Koplin Del Rio, in Culver City California where he is represented. Shay has earned critical praise from Artweek and Inked magazine.
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