Featured Artist: PopLiturgy
"I try to capture a cinematic element to my illustrations. I view my work as being a part of some forgotten film or movement from the past. "
Self-described “master of nothing,” Lucas Gluesenkamp, who goes by PopLitugy has a dynamic pop-surrealist portfolio filled with comic inspired illustrations. With a focus on depicting figures who are often in motion or in the midst of extreme adventure, PopLiturgy’s work is cinematic, mysterious, and epic.
Make sure you check out his shop for more.
Who have been your biggest artistic influences?
Moebius, Frank Frazetta, Ashley Wood, and JMW Turner. I admire the fearless creativity of their work and the efficiency of their technique.
In general, film is where I draw most of my influence. The work of Stanley Kubrick, John Carpenter, Alejandro Jodorowsky, David Lynch, Nicolas Winding Refn, Andrzej Zulawski, and Ingmar Bergman.
Therefore, I try to capture a cinematic element to my illustrations. I view my work as being a part of some forgotten film or movement from the past. I even seem to gravitate more towards the wider aspect ratios used in film. Most of my work has the most vibrant color pushed into the negative space, which can give an effect similar to it being projected onto a screen. It gives the effect that the image is backlit.
How do you sustain an artistic practice? Do you have a routine?
I don’t keep sketchbooks, or much of an art studio. Creativity is something that needs a full unconstrained gamut to roam in. When trying to come up with new ideas or just trying to get into the right state of mind, I try to induce what is known as hypnagogia. Which can be best described as that middle point between being awake and fully asleep. Relaxing your mind and just observing how it drifts helps me break through so many creative obstacles. Much more so than slaving over preliminary work or scouring the internet for some form of inspiration.
Solitude is another indispensable factor for me. It’s also good to have hobbies that get you outside of your routine. Fly fishing and board games tend to be my go to activities. Being a critic of your own work is another tool of mine. You have to be able to see what is not harmonizing in your work and be able to come up with a strategy to mend this. Critique your own work, not in a negative way, but in a manner that give you a list of approaches and techniques that need refinement.
"Set goals to post new work every other day, or at least every week. Also, becoming familiar with basic marketing strategies will help keep your art from falling into oblivion."
I love the artwork Divination – can you tell us about the ideas behind it?
When working on an idea, I try not to make too literal of a translation of what the image’s true intentions are. I think the viewer will always be a far better storyteller then I will ever be. I really enjoy giving the viewer just enough visually, to draw whatever conclusion they feel is fitting. “Divinations” was done almost as a test for another, more complex image. It captured the same energy, but was much simpler and elegantly executed. It is a part of a series of work called the “Magic Potion” series. It is a body of work meant to be a window into the inner workings of an unnamed secret society.
Do you have a creative community or group of peers you show work to?
I do not. In fact I may be the worst person to ask this question. I don’t have many artistic friends. The ones I do have I see so rarely that when we do see each other we’re talking more about what’s been going on in life not art. Working on art for me has never really been a community oriented thing. I am not really familiar with any gallery scenes don’t really participate in shows. Aside from submitting to a few “call for artists” every now and then; I don’t really fit in with that kind of crowd, or artistic mind state.
What’s your biggest piece of advice for fellow Redbubble artists?
Patience really. Unfortunately art and design, for the most part, are not fields you get into for fame, glory, or money. Just be consistent, do good work, and do not worry about sales. Set goals to post new work every other day, or at least every week. Also, becoming familiar with basic marketing strategies will help keep your art from falling into oblivion.
Additionally, my advice would be to stay fearless. Make your contribution to the art world as strong as you can with the voice you are given. Avoid working inside other people’s rule sets.