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Meet Christian Villareal

Today we’d like to introduce you to Christian Villareal.

Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
After high school, I was dead set on pursuing fashion design in Los Angeles. Being in my late teens, I lost track of the bigger picture and balance between school and personal life, so I dropped out within a year. From there, I experienced my first music festival and gained a lot of inspiration from the sights, sounds, and community. At the time, I felt like a lot of my art could come from the musical influence so I worked two jobs to support that lifestyle because anyone who attends festivals religiously knows it can get expensive.

As time passed, I wanted to experience something different. I decided to serve in the Marine Corps for five years as aircrew on a cargo aircraft. Within my time there, I realized that the job was technical and I found myself looking for an experimental outlet. I would create experimental digital fan art and album covers for various artists and musicians as a way to fill the creative void.

After the military, I got a degree in graphic design to expand my skill set. I am furthering my education in web design and development. While I was in school, I started photographing the music scene as well as festivals in Southern California. For work, I’m a graphic designer and photographer for a studio specializing in brand identity. On the side, I’m a freelance event and lifestyle photographer. Time spent apart from that, and I immerse myself in creating surreal art.

Please tell us about your art.
I use Photoshop for photo manipulation, but when I’m on the go, I enjoy using mobile applications like Image Blender, Glitche, and various creative apps to put together quick concepts to expand on further when I get home.

With psychedelic and techno music having a heavy influence in my life, my artwork is surreal. It focuses on cerebral conflict and internal emotions. It traces the edges of consciousness, and it is heavy-minded. It brings forth a mindful element bound by fantasy and reality. With every piece of work, I try to my mind to unlock its unlimited creative potential through the process of exploration, experimentation, and emergence.

My artwork is based on VILLAREALISM which is a combination of my last name and the word ‘realism.’ It is my artistic movement channeling cerebral rhythm through the fusion of art, music, and photography.

What do you think about conditions for artists today? Has life become easier or harder for artists in recent years? What can cities like ours do to encourage and help art and artists thrive?
With the right branding, strategy, and business knowledge, the days of being a “starving artist,” are gone. I believe artists live in a time where the production of creative content is becoming more valuable. There is more of an appreciation for artists now than it was for the baby boomer generation which results in more opportunities and jobs.

Life has become both easier and harder for artists. It’s easier because technology has given artists an efficient workflow, easier access, and convenience to share our visions to a worldwide audience. Because of how accessible it’s become, it has also been harder since there are even more artists striving to share their work.

San Diego, cities around the world, and the internet are already doing their part by holding community-based events that teach workshops and bring various artists and music together. Artists have taken matters into their own hands to curate the events themselves which provides a beneficial platform to connect with other artists and share their work with the community.

Cities should be encouraging creatives to learn the business side of art and design, reach out to one another, and learn from each other. You’re only as good as your resources. Life and art are meant to be shared. There is power in creative collaboration. Connection through creation go out and experiment!

How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
Feel free to reach out to me through social media provided below. I also enjoy collaborating with other creatives on conceptual photo shoots to use for my digital art pieces.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Photo of me – Diana Sciacca of @dianarosephoto
Photos used in digital compositions – and

Getting in touch: SDVoyager is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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