Born in 1960 in the small town of Perkasie, PA. Craig gravitated to drawing at an early age by copying illustrations from his favorite books. As his interest and ability grew he looked for other learning experiences starting with the Famous Artists School (yes, he drew the pirate). Through the Barnstone Studios, a generally realist and classically based private school, he found his love for figure drawing. This foundational training continues to inform his work to this day. He’s continued to work towards completing his “official” education attending Kutztown University, Moravian College, and most recently Coastal Carolina University, but his education as a professional sign designer and painter, specializing in billboard pictorials and large scale graphics, has influenced his work and aesthetic.
My works are the confluence of my life experiences; classical training at a young age, years as a sign and billboard artist, working in advertising as a Graphic Designer and Art Director.
The first track is based in my love for drawing and painting the human figure, the process of building the figure and all the places it takes me artistically. At the ripe age of 17 I had the good fortune of being introduced to life drawing, I’ve been hooked ever since. Whenever possible I have sought out and participated in life drawing sessions. Life drawing, for me, is the catalyst that jump-starts my ideation process. The search for visual relationships, proportions, constructive form, underlying geometry all inform my creative endeavors. All of the elements of art, design and creative thought are present in the human form. For me expressing the beauty of the human form is the most difficult and satisfying of processes. This process doesn’t necessarily have to manifest in a carefully rendered classical figure drawing but sometimes does. Wherever it leads I will follow.
The second track my work explores comes from a general realization that time moves on leaving fragments and pieces of memory and experience that communicate in messages we may not be aware of on the surface. Billboards, like memory, were recycled and repainted with no regard to what lies underneath. From this, I noticed an abstract communication arise, often not in any order, forming interesting shapes and images left behind by the different pieces of the previous ads. Over the years, while painting over old ads on billboards outside, I might come across layout lines of a painter, different styles or techniques that I hadn’t seen before laid down 5-10 years prior. The current work started to take shape while exploring this “puzzle” or “layering” type of communication. These small billboards are “mash-ups” of images and lettering similar to the layering I encountered while working on billboards. There is a history, a process, and layers intentionally left for the viewer to discover, creating a visual time capsule of what came before. All the while capitalizing on the juxtaposition of iconic images of consumerism, all things that aren’t good for us, with human faces- rapacious and almost manic looking.
My hope is you enjoy the pieces of my labors as much as I enjoy making them. Drop me a line and let me know if there is any one, or more, you relate to and why.