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Art & Life with Nicholas Aceves

Today we’d like to introduce you to Nicholas Aceves.

Nicholas, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
I was born and raised in Santee, CA. As a child my parents took my siblings and me to various spots in and around San Diego, Ca. This made me appreciate living in a vibrant community. At the age of the ten, my family and I moved to our current location in Hesperia, CA. The high desert of Southern California has taken me to places, both mentally and physically, and it is where I now call home. Here in the high desert, I’ve discovered two major things in my life; punk-rock music and skateboarding. I was aware of those two things living in San Diego, but didn’t fully discover, craft, and learn them. Some of that learning has to do with age but more importantly is that when I lived in San Diego, I felt like a tourist always on vacation. In this new location, I was able to stop and focus on myself.

I started to explore art while in middle school, where I began sketching band logos that I would see on album covers, along with logos from skateboarding brands. By doing so, I was able to pick up on various techniques, the study of color, size and form, and so on. Shortly after that, I moved to sketch random objects. My sketches turned into doing graffiti, and my artwork dove into exploring the relationship between skateboarding and punk rock. After finishing high school in 2007, I was conflicted on what I wanted to do.

Not wanting to go to college just yet, I ended up working with my dad doing carpet installation for about five years. By the last year of working construction, I wasn’t feeling it anymore, felt stuck, and my artistic abilities tanked. In the fall of 2012 I started classes at a local community college where I explored several art endeavors, from 3D animation to photography, and ever since my creative drive has taken me to places, I wound’t have dream of before.

After community college, I transferred to California State University San Bernardino (CSUSB) to pursue a BA in Graphic Design. I started work at campus ad agency, Coyote Advertising, which taught me a valuable insight into the marketing and advertising world. A few months into my senior year I began work at Bauer Pottery, where I still currently work. This past March I took part in my first art showing at The Orange Space in Redlands, Ca. This amazing experience has open more doors than ever before, and since I’ve shown my work at local spots such as; Homage Brewing in Pomona, CA, Augie’s Coffee, and The Meek House both in Redlands, CA. I’ve also recently given a talk about my process, where I pull my inspiration from, and how others can find success focusing on a niche.

Can you give our readers some background on your art?
My work over the last few years has been a mixture of things, ranging from paintings inspired by the local landscape, to contour and outline illustrations, and photography between film, Polaroid, and digital. At the start of 2017, I set a personal goal to produce one illustration per week. These illustrations range from figure studies to random objects and scenery.

At the end of the year, I was left with 48 illustrations and a body of work that has opened the doors for my career. Following the illustrations From there, I move to paint abstract landforms based on the surrounding area. Picking a new spot on the mop, I would set out with my sketchbook and camera and wonder. I found solace and inspiration from nature and turned those adventures into a body of work. My first solo show was title “Surveyor,” but for me, it is more than a name for one event. I view “Surveyor” along with all my work, as one collection.

What responsibility, if any, do you think artists have to use their art to help alleviate problems faced by others? Has your art been affected by issues you’ve concerned about?
Artists throughout time have expressed themselves and the views of others in their work. What’s different now compared to 10, 20, 50, or 250 years ago is the means of access artists have displayed their work. The benefits of the internet and social media have allowed artists to broadcast their work and voice to a much larger audience, and can easily share flyers/posters that they can be used in demonstrations. My work stems for be being appreciative of nature, and I position my work so that others look beyond the brush strokes, and to come away with having an environmentally healthy outlook on the future.

What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
Currently, I have some paintings displayed at The Meek House in Redlands, CA. I welcome everyone living in the area or visiting to stop in and have a look. To see what I’m creating visit my Instagram page @nicholas.aceves In the weeks to follow I’ll be producing works inspired by woodland areas of Southern California and my coming trip to Seattle, WA.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Photo by: James McClung
Photo by: Annery Sanchez

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