We had the good fortune of connecting with Raymond Logan and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Raymond, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
It just seems like I was designed and built to be an artist. Like most people, my life has not been a direct path, but from early childhood I knew I would end up being some sort of artist. Even when I veered off from fine art, my other vocation of being an art director/designer was a creative endeavor. The “other job” had to, at a minimum, challenge my creativity and artistic abilities. And believe me, it did. That previous vocation has had a direct influence on who I am as a fine artist and individual—we are cumulative beings. I always knew I would return to my art, and I did.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Short answer: I am a representational oil painter of people, places, and things who uses way too much paint.
Longer answer: My art is extremely personal, but I would not say there is an overall message contained in it. I am expressing an aesthetic—my singular intuitive aesthetic—via the unique manipulation of my subjects and medium. My aesthetic has grown organically based on what I want to experience and see. Hopefully, I am successful enough in expressing my aesthetic that when somebody views my work, they will know it is mine—they will be able to see me in it.
Whether my subject matter is distinct or mundane, my approach, in a sense, is to present them to you as revered icons. (Maybe lesser saints, but icons nonetheless.) The singularity of my subject matter heightens the iconographic sense of my work. Again, my subjects may be distinct or mundane, but that is not what matters to me. What matters is that something about that person/place/thing caught my eye strongly enough to make me stop and take a closer look. I study them, sometimes for years, and when the time is right, I apply my personal aesthetic to them.
After viewing a new piece of mine, a fellow artist commented, “It is great, as is the rest of your work, I like your work because you can walk into a room of a thousand works and go right to yours and know who did it!” I cannot think of a better compliment.
As far as overcoming challenges, I have always had a “shut up, take the ball and run” attitude and it has usually worked for me. It is an odd bit of advice to give because it comes with the caveat that you have to find your ball. I am lucky enough to have known what my ball was going to be from an early age.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Boy, did you ask the wrong guy this question! My friends know not to ask me to show them around because, like so many locals, I have become inured to my environment and do not see much to show. Of course, I am wrong. There are tons of things to see, from the Inland Empire out to the Pacific Ocean. When I was younger, my more rusticated kin would come down and want to see Hollywood, so I would begrudgingly take them down to Hollywood and proceed to show them every seedy alleyway I knew (and I knew a lot of them back then). ••• When I spend time with friends and family, it is often over a meal, so I could suggest some places like Rae’s Restaurant, Langer’s Deli, The Pantry, Nickel Diner, Phillipe’s French Dip, The 101 Coffee Shop, Patys Restaurant, etc. Do you see a pattern? Diners and delis, all having great breakfast fare, coffee and more. (Langer’s does have probably the best pastrami in the country and yes, I have been to New York.) For me, these are all comfortable places to hang out with good friends and an occasional relation.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Wow. Being an artist, I view my vocation more broadly than many people might. My being an artist is the basis for my over all life, so the list of recognition would be pretty long. Everything in my life has and does influence my art in one way or another. ••• It would be remiss of me to not first mention my immediate support network. That network is my little nuclear family which consists of my ever lovely wife (known online as The Spousal Unit or The One Who Feeds Me Fresh Baked Cookies!) and my two sons (known as Spawn Number One and Spawn Number Two and collectively as The Spawn Who Eat the Fresh Baked Cookies Before I Can Get to Them!). If I were to narrow it down to only my art, the list would still be pretty long, but I would choose to single out my pal, Anne Saitzyk. Fine art is my second major vocation and Anne has a lot to do with me building up the courage to launch in to it. Besides slapping my wrist and saying to use less white (a lesson all painters need to be taught), she is a natural cheerleader. As a matter of fact, that is what I call her, My Cheerleader. Anne teaches and advises at my alma mater (Art Center) and I highly recommend her workshops and classes and attitude—she is painfully positive and it is a bit infectious.
Instagram: @raymond_logan_artist / www.instagram.com/raymond_logan_artist
Artist Portrait: The Spousal Unit / “Darwin, C.” : The Artist / “Catalina Liquor” : Art Works / “Mickey Mouse Projector” : The Artist