Evoking Positive and Creative Energy through Your Work!
Critics, admirers and friends have in unison called his work controlled explosion of energy and movement. Tom J Manning believes this is true as it is his conscious effort to evoke positive and creative energy through his works. He presents an account of his design beliefs, thoughts and practices.
Moving Images Are More Alive Than Static
I am fascinated by the flow of time, particularly the moments that may never be repeated. I also realise that nothing is ever truly still. With these themes in mind I make very quick strokes using special custom brushes. Smudging and fast scratchy pencil lines add to this effect. The theme of movement relates to the energy in my work. I always add simple lines to the outside of an image to make it ‘move’ even if it is portrayed as a static object.
Contrast Adds Depth
I like to keep my images bright. That’s why I use vibrant colours, mainly orange. I find that I can isolate the brightness of the colours by using grayscale, which makes them stand out almost like highlights. I tend to work in darker colours first before layering brighter colours on top. I feel that this helps to create a more indepth kind of image.
Connect Comes From Positive Emotions
Most of my work is open to interpretation, especially the abstract work. When I do portraits I want the audience to understand who the person is and what they do and perhaps a glimpse into their personality. I also try to invoke happiness, content, hope, sadness and change within my images. My style always attempts to make good out of the bad, light out of the dark. Quick and vibrant strokes of colour represent that creative and positive energy.
Free To Pick, Think And Draw
In nature you can see so many things moving, so many colours and varieties. I pick them up in abundance and use them in my work. Like, the quick strokes in my paintings are inspired from Leafy Sea Dragons. Or, the orange comes from the colour of the Malay Lacewing Butterfly. More importantly, I find mixed media to be free and expressionistic which is perfect for my style and the themes I wish to communicate. It also allows me to keep my work traditional and raw. Often a single image could contain as many as 15 different media all mixed together with a digital finish.
Published in Issue 16
We always wish we had someone to show us the right way of doing things when we were starting our professional journey. And that’s why we have based this issue on graduates. The cover feature is an ensemble of advice from top names of the industry. We have also showcased few talented fresh graduates from across the country, keeping with the theme. You’ll find Tom J Manning and Pallavi Sen share their international exposure as well as insights behind their unique approach. Also featuring Shreya Shetty, a prominent concept artist, who shares the secret behind the believable characters she creates. She believes, with practice and patience, anyone can be a good artist.
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