We had the good fortune of connecting with Marcel “SEL” Blanco and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Marcel “SEL”, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
Taking risks is vital to the growth of your personal life and career. By putting yourself into a situation you may not be comfortable with forces you to figure out solutions to new challenges. If you happen to mess it up even better because you will figure out what went wrong so you don’t make the same mistake again. I use to approach things with extreme caution to make sure I took the right step or made the correct decision, It took me a while to realize how much this held me back. The fear of failure ran deep within me but now when that fear comes up I see it as a sign that I should take the project on. A few years back I commissioned to paint a glow in the dark mural on a 100x50ft wall in another city. I had never done a glow in the dark mural or a wall that size and it scared me so I said yes I’ll do it. I ran into several issues but in the end, it came out amazing. Taking that project took my business to next level. You can’t be afraid to take a risk, the trick is to keep moving and keep learning. Life and business are constantly evolving and it could take a minute to make peace with the fear but once you stop resisting it things begin to flow easier.
What are you inspired by?
I’ve always been a seeker… Searching for something deeper, to find my own truth and happiness. Growing up, Punk Rock had a huge influence in me and as I continued my search eastern philosophy and practices grabbed my attention. Through my work I’m seeking to create a balance between all opposites and extremes that I have found define a moment or season in my life “Punk Rock” chaos, angst, outwardly explosive versus “Zen” calm, quiet, inwardly reflective. For me life is about balance and finding that balance in these paintings is my journey and my process. “Punk Rock Zen” Professionally, my career has unfolded in a very organic yet unexpected way, from graffiti in my teens through music and graphic design as an adult finally finding home and expression in my fine artwork.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Considering we’re in the middle of a pandemic, the week long visit would be spent on hikes with my dog, cooking for them, anything from fish tacos to Japanese curry. Hang out at my studio, catch sunsets by the beach in Santa Monica with pizza and beer and mostly spending time reflecting about what this big shift in our lives has brought up that we can take into a more conscious living future.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Beautify Earth (www.beautifyearth.com) has been a big part of my career growth. They are a company that connects artists with people that want murals painted. Some of my first commissioned murals were through them and the relationship continues to this day. I just painted a wall last week in collaboration with a beer company; a very cool project that promotes people on their communities.