Chop Chop: The Art of Making Monsters

Alison and Chuck of Fluid Coffeebar are two of the coolest people you'll ever meet. I first met them when they asked if I would hang up some artwork in their shop for it's grand opening. Totally honored I didn't hesitate and even made a couple new pieces. Fast forward a few months and a got another messaged asking if I would be interested in showing some art and of course I said yes! But this time I didn't have any pieces to show and I had to make all new artwork. 

I've had some scrap wood in garage for what seems like forever, and I had this idea of cutting my monsters out of wood and painting them. Sounds easy enough, right? I decided to do a couple test monsters, one night I set up a table in the basement broke out a drop cloth and jigsaw, then went to town. 

That night I cut out three monsters and learned a lot. First I learned that I was going to need a sharper blade for the type of wood I was cutting and learn how to work my jigsaw better. Second, it was super loud and very messy two things that don't go well inside the house. And lastly I was going to take a lot longer than I expected. 

Armed with this knowledge, I had my next creative session in the garage, a lot colder than the basement but also a lot easier to clean up. I had help though. My daughter, Carsyn, was there with me every step of the way and I'm so proud of her interest and willingness to help. After a quick stop at the hardware store, for a couple new blades, we were off and running. 

After one night I managed to cut out 14 shapes. Some monsters and some other random shapes. The following night I began to put the base coat on them. I really liked the texture of the wood so I decided let that come through with a thin coat of paint. Picking paint color was fun, I wanted the monsters to pop off of the brick wall that they would be displayed on. Orange and blue became the driving colors and I loved the combination.  

After I painted them all white I added color with little rhyme or reason. I did end up painting an orange group and a blue group just to keep track of the balance. These monsters would be displayed in a random order almost scattered across the wall like a hunters trophy wall of taxidermy. 

Once I got them all painted to a certain extent I was able to move out of the garage and back inside to outline them. I used a black acrylic marker to add in all of my lines. My little helper Carsyn carried each one in and out of the garage as I finished them and even jumped in and helped me paint a couple. 

The day finally came to take them to the shop and install them. Chuck was awesome at helping me get them up and we were able to reuse a lot of holes. As I hung them up a customer struck up a conversation with me and she asked if they were influenced by Alaskan art. I kindly said no but that would have been cool. One of my pieces reminded her of her dog named Bear and she was so taken by it, she bought it on the spot! I was very thankful and really excited.

As of today there are only 6 pieces left. So if you want to get one ($10-$60) then get on down to Fluid and pick one up. Just pay at the counter, its that easy. Here are some shots of the final display. 

Learn more about Fluid Coffeebar and watch this video below. *Bonus: See if you can see one of my paintings in the background.

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Joseph Gonzalez1 Comment