We had the good fortune of connecting with Steven Daily and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Steven, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking.
I believe Risk taking is a huge part Growth, staying fresh and prolific. If you don’t take risks, i don’t believe you will grow as an artist technically, and style wise. Also, I think that really meaningful work comes with risk. I Personally get excited about trying a new medium or a larger scale or a different subject matter. A common mistake i see is, a lot of artist paint for there audience, instead of creating form within. Everyone needs to make a living and i get that. So why fix it if it isn’t broke? I know guys who are the robot guy, or the rabbit guy, who are sick of painting cats. Maybe their to afraid of taking that risk, to do something out of their brand? In fear of loosing an audience. A very famous artist once told me to paint what you love, and an audience will follow.
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.
I create figurative surreal art. The medium is oil paint on wood panel. With the use of masters techniques, stripped down to the foundation. Creating a contemporary style. I work from my imagination, symbolic imagery, and iconography. To convey a deeper meaning than the surface of the subject. I think I am where i am from hard work, and risks and the amount of work. It was not easy, I dropped out of art school to work in the illustration field early on. Without a degree, or school pedigree, it has been a long hard road into the fine art world. I just kept at it, never stopped, i believed in my ability and voice. I just simplified my life, financially and lifestyle to be able to create full time. I think that there are common misconceptions, that an artist “Makes IT”and that’s it there set for life. The reality is life as an artist life is peaks and valleys, feast or famine. You never really “Make It” you Have to adapt with styles, trends, and taste. And in todays climate an artist is not just a painter. we have to do it all to survive, painting, graphic design, illustration, design, murals, teaching. As were in the midstof the covid 19 pandemic. I think the last 10 years us as artist have been being able to adapt selling on line. and it has all been leading up to a new way of existing in a post virus world Really excited about a new body of work, i have been working on. I’ve been keeping it a secret, been sketching ideas out and refining them.
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
I would show them the cultural diversity and cuisine of Los Angeles. One of the reasons i fell in love with this city. You can travel the world with your stomach in a day here.,and it really transports you to a cultural culinary world. I often fantasied if Anthony Bordain (Rip) was to have me show him around where would i take him. The first place i think would be to get Carne asada tacos at Chato taco truck, Then Lomo Saltado at marios, then ramen Daikokuia, some coffee and desert at Cafe dulce. some bonnie b’s bbq. herald and bells, korean bbq, at yang sang bak, Then wee’d repeat this over and over with more delicious food. the list goes on and on. I really like little, little osaka, little tokyo, korea town, South pass, Arcadia, maybe show them the Gety, venice beach, Griffith observatory, some secrets like the bat cave, magic castle, etc.
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?
I had a few People take interest in my work over the years. The first person id like to thank, is my wife. Who has been supportive in many ways. If it wasn’t for her and her sacrifice and support, i wouldn’t be where i am in my carrier today. Dayna mason my Jr college art teacher took a real interest in my work. She taught me a lot, and helped me out financially, when i was broke. Dj, Greg Escalante, Gaston and Francisco Dominguez, Billy Shire, Matt Kennedy for all giving me a start.
PHoto by Steven Daily, assisted by Anthony Ochoa