One of the reasons I choose to focus my subject matter on rock and roll is because of the style and attitude often associated with it. Simply put, some of the coolest cats who have ever existed were rock musicians.
A close second to for me are films that feature unapologetic tough guys, especially in the genre of automotive culture pictures. Iconic cool guys such as Henry Fonda and his chopper, James Dean and his Lil’ Bastard, James Bond and his Aston Martin, and of course Mr. Steve McQueen with his Porsche 917 in “Le Mans” or his iconic Mustang in “Bullitt”.
Steve McQueen was an easy choice for me to paint because, in my opinion, he is the greatest example of ‘iconic cool’ I was hoping to achieve with this piece. Mr. McQueen and I also have a shared love of Porsches. The perfect car for the likes of McQueen and James Dean, the Porsches they chose to drive in their personal lives shared the same classic style coupled with fierce counter culture attitude. Having taken his love for automotive racing off screen, McQueen was once quoted as saying, “I’m not sure whether I’m an actor who races or a racer who acts”.
Keeping with my method of tagging my pieces with song lyrics, I borrowed a perfect representation from Sheryl Crow’s aptly titled song, “Steve McQueen.”
Trevor "Stickman" Stickel specializes in musically based portraits that capture legendary moments, powerful ideas and raw emotion. His work is described as gritty-yet-fresh, complex-yet-simple. Graduating from a Jekyll and Hyde influence early in his career in which he divided his time between family portraits and design work on helmets and Harleys - Trevor had the epiphany to combine both styles while reading "According to the Rolling Stones". Two weeks later he finished his first canvas portrait of Mick Jagger that would thrust him into a different realm of the art world an aptly titled it "Please allow me to introduce myself".
The idea or "mission" behind my artwork was to create an artistic tribute to something (music) and to the people (musicians) that have had a tremendous impact on me and basically shaped my world. Historically these tributes have been limited to photos/posters that have adorned the bedroom walls of teenagers and dorm rooms throughout adolescence. I wanted to create a style of art that brings these iconic figures back into our life, and do so in manner that we as adults can display proudly in our homes. When planning a piece I often imagine how the finished piece would look in a contemporary living room, dining room, lounge, etc.
In order to achieve the mission stated above as well as explore my creative and artistic side, the idea of amalgamating different artistic disciplines on the same canvas was born. The concept is to take my portrait realism and juxtapose it with a background that expresses my feeling and emotions of the subject I'm painting. This method also allows me to explore other disciplines of art - many of my backgrounds will include Abstract, Expressionism, Impressionism, Realism, Pop Art, Street Art, Surrealism and quite often a combination of these. This is where I get to enjoy the artistic side of these pieces as well as paying additional homage to some of my favorite visual artists. My work is a true collaboration of music and art where I take a very influential subject matter and combine it with inspiration from artists such as Warhol, Bansky, Basquiat and Pollock to name just a few.