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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Portrait of an artist

    UA student Daniel Gonzalez shows off one of his finished works, evidently designed to be viewed with a Grateful Dead album on in the background.
    UA student Daniel Gonzalez shows off one of his finished works, evidently designed to be viewed with a Grateful Dead album on in the background.

    Who: Daniel Gonzalez, 23, a senior majoring in art education and studio art.

    Bio: Gonzalez grew up on a ranch in Douglas and does figurative work dealing with people. He used to draw and paint his family members. He has also done self-portraits of himself as a skeleton.

    What: He is currently working on commissioned work for people on his Web site, He also worked on Raices Taller 222 Gallery’s Day of the Dead show.

    Wildcat: How would you classify your art?

    Gonzalez: I do so many different kinds of art – photorealism, surrealism, Southwestern, sculpture work – so I really don’t know how to classify myself right now as an artist.

    W: What inspires you when it comes to art?

    G: I’ve always been making art. Ever since I was little, I picked up markers and started coloring the walls. I guess I could say something about actually creating something and having that feeling of accomplishment that I’ve been raised with. My dad’s canvas, the orchards, also inspired me. He instilled a craving for accomplishment in me. When I do my art right and with all the integrity that I can put in it, I feel a sense of accomplishment.

    W: What kind of mediums do you use?

    G: Most of my art, well, I paint mostly in oils. I photograph with 35-millimeter film in black and white. I draw with charcoal or graphite. I sculpt with whatever I can get my hands on.

    W: In your painting, do you do a certain theme that transpires through the art that you create?

    G: I really like to do figures. I like to do paintings of bones and muscles. Like the paintings of the skeletons, I did them anatomically correct, but I had to make them into cartoons in order to make them less scary. I am a figurative artist.

    W: What piece are you most proud of?

    G: Probably the painting that I just finished, “”La Seranata”” (the Serenade). It took about six months to work on.

    W: What is this painting about?

    G: It’s composed on top of the golden-rule diagram. It’s a traditional diagram that artists use. I played with it, and it gave the painting a lot of depth. The painting is of a woman that is being serenaded by her husband. It symbolizes my wife and I. I painted my own frame on there and it worked really well. It would have been hard to find a frame for it. I’m really picky with my artwork.

    W: Are there certain color palettes you find yourself working with?

    G: Yeah I do, it depends on what I’m doing. What I like to do is use dark palettes in most of my paintings. They are all dark scenes that make the painting a little darker. There’s contrast. I use the element of contrast to direct where the viewer’s eye goes. I’m very selective about what my artwork is saying. I also do like vivid colors and the saturation of colors. It’s fun, having a lot of colors is really fun to play with. I have a 12-color palette that I use. It goes to 15 colors sometimes.

    W: What do you think of Tucson?

    G: It’s what you make it. Last semester I would be in the studio painting every night, so it has good facilities. The instructors are good. Tucson is a great place. It’s a lot more welcoming than Santa Fe, where I went to school. In Santa Fe, the art scene is competitive in an unfriendly way, unlike here in Tucson.

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