Is Andrew Spear an artist? A musician? Well, he’s both. His preferred medium being the overlooked colored pencils, really act as his instruments. Spears’ large scale murals seem to cross boundaries between the gallery and the street with their urban yet professional vibe. Just in a few minutes of meeting him, you will notice that the conversation tends to steer from art to music because for Andrew, they can be considered one in the same. Both women along with music act as his key inspirations. You could say that his large portraits of women are essentially a song he has written about them in a different form; the notes being visual as opposed to auditory.
I decided to delve a little bit more into this dynamic artist and find out how music can be visual:
Do you consider yourself a street artist and if not, why? How would you compare yourself to them?
I never learned how to be a street artist. I just do really big illustrations on walls. After clay pens came out, I was able to enforce a linear style of drawings on walls. I don’t tag anything but graffiti art is something I would try, although I don’t consider myself a graffiti artist.
What is your obsession with color pencils?
When I went to school, teachers told me it wasn’t a serious enough medium and to do something else. I never had the patience to wait for paint to dry, whereas colored pencils offered immediate gratification. Once I was told not to use them, I immediately wanted to make big pieces that hide like paintings.
Do you see your art progressing into something else?
I’m an octopus. I do illustration, murals, worked for Disney, did stuff for MTV’s Real World, have a t-shirt line, etc. You want to be like The Beatles. You don’t want to be a band like Boston who wrote the same song over and over again. The Beatles were able to show you the ups and downs of what they can do. Any artist who is serious is going to HOPE to metamorphous into something more than what they are. They got to have push the pen syndrome.
Can you elaborate on your sources of inspiration: women and music?
They both LITERALLY are my inspiration. I actually was talking to a friend recently about line weights, like heavy line and thin line. Certain pen tips have different sizes. When you’re encompassed by something that’s really big, the line weight almost looks like music; it almost makes its own abstract. Although the main subject may be an illustration, when you step back and focus on certain areas, it’s like facets of sound waves. There are treble lines, bass lines, deep drum lines etc. It’s all there. It’s very music heavy.
I think it’s safe to say that Andrew Spear has blurred the lines between music and art, street art and mural art, colored pencils and paint etc. Meeting Andrew has reinforced the fact that not everything fits into a specific framework, especially in the art world. With new innovations constantly being introduced, I think we will see more and more combinations of various artistic mediums, concepts, and even dimensions. I will leave you all with a picture of a 3D street art project in Germany. As you can see, the possibilities of art are endless.
Come check out the rockin’ lines of Andrew Spear’s mural at UFORGE Gallery until October 28th!