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Vibrant Paintings on Cross-Sectioned Trees Made Using Ballpoint Pen

Tucked just beneath the edges of tree bark are brilliant technicolor paintings by artist Shane McAdams. Collecting walnut, ash, and oak woods, he gives these rough textures a psychedelic twist. The organic shapes of the cross-sectioned trees create the perfect frame for McAdam's vibrant technique, which pairs ballpoint pens and resin. Colors appear to drip from the large forms as his seamless application creates an illusion that this sight occurs naturally.

McAdams grew up in the desert southwest, and as a child he was mesmerized by the surrounding landscape, specifically sandstone outcroppings. “I will always marvel over how the incremental effects of time can create something more structured and unique than I may ever make with my own hands,” he writes. This realization is reflected in his paintings, which fuse nature with the synthetic. To craft them, the artist prefers to use everyday materials like ballpoint pens. He handles the utensils in non-traditional ways, and by doing so, stretches the limits of their capabilities. These sort of techniques also require the work of many layers and much time, and it could be seen as McAdams' homage to nature and its meticulous formations.

Shane McAdams: Website
via [Art Walls]

Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met, Manager of My Modern Met Store, and co-host of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.
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