About The Artist
Richard Mitchell has been passionate about art from an early age. Inspired by history, nature, and the infinite possibilities found in art, he is engrossed in a body of work that emphasizes a juxtaposition of historic and contemporary elements.
Compelling faces of ancestral Native Americas, preserved in national photo records are now celebrated and honored by Mitchell in his ball point pen portraiture. With this contemporary tool he gives new voice to individuals who are the roots of North American history. The scale and emotion of his work inspires others to think about and admire both the people he depicts and the pen he uses.
Richard's passion, first noticed by of The Arts high school in San Francisco, enabled him to embark on a life long journey of intensive art study and growth. After studying in Providence RI, Rome, Barcelona and Phoenix, AZ, he now exhibits in art venues around the United States and Canada sharing his work with art enthusiasts everywhere.
About the Art
Description of Work
"These portraits are of individuals from cultures that pre-date colonial American nations. The source materials are photos in the Library of Congress which are in public domain due to their original date of publication. My objective with this series is to artistically bring to light images of real people who faced tremendous challenges with the influx of a new population in the Americas. I attempt to capture actual expression and emotion found in the expressions and postures of these displaced people."
Ballpoint Pen Drawings
"All my ink drawings are completed with ballpoint pen. Both gel and the older wax based ink pens are used. In using the gel ink pens exclusively on cotton fabric I have been able to achieve smooth gradations and reduced reflective glare. With this adaptation, I have been able to create a series of drawings that reflect the aggressive yet sensitive style I aim to use in the portrayal of my subjects."
Linoleum Block Prints
"Linoleum cut prints are made from hand carved blocks then hand printed individually. I begin with a drawing which I then simplify into layers so I can carve multiple blocks for one image. I select from an assortment of ink colors, paper tones and texture allowing different materials to work in concert creating unique images. The resulting images although made from the same blocks vary widely in their final presentation. This technique and medium allows the viewer to see how different textures, colors, and pigment density affects over all mood and tone of the same composition."