If someone could look into our dreams and paint what they see, I'm sure that would be artist Eric Fortune. Creating beautiful worlds using acrylic on watercolor paper, Fortune has his heroes and heroines jumping off bridges and wading through murky water. Look closely at some of his paintings and you'll even notice something slightly off – sliced body parts. Fortune describes these as “a kind of a metaphor for pain or hardship…manifested physically.”
In fact, Fortune's mysterious paintings are filled with stories about our relationship within ourselves and between others. They're about the challenges we strive to overcome and the hardships we daringly face.
His art has been described as “quiet yet dynamic, and seasoned with a touch of surrealism that takes us to captivating places, beyond our everyday experience but filled with truth…They are characters wrapped in their own worlds.”
What's Fortune's creative process like? “I paint with acrylics watered down with…..water. I apply it in very thin washes, in a very watercolor based technique with some glazing and some scumbling here and there,” he says, “Early in the painting I tend to do large wet on wet washes to establish a general tone and value in the piece. It takes many layers of paint to build up the desired affect. If I make a mistake and have to paint over an area the opaque acrylic looks very different from the rest of the transparent washes. So I have to be very careful. I’m still playing around with how much opaque paint I may want to have in the future. I try to plan out most of the painting. However, I also try to leave room for some spontaneity.”
Having graduated school with a BFA in Illustration, Fortune tends to like illustrators that create art which resonates with his own. Even within the genre of art that he's showing in, the “Lowbrow” or “Pop Surrealist” scene, his favorite artists tend to be former illustrators. As he explains, they're “not just artists with highly technical attributes. But artists whose work evokes an emotional response or some a sense of wonder that pulls you in and let’s you fill in the blanks of some unreal narrative.”