James Griffin

griffinI have several goals when I begin a painting, the first being to dive into the form of consciousness known as the “Flow”. This trance-like state is a form of meditation and a source of joy. I have to enter into the work for it to come alive.

My aim is to communicate that joy with the viewer, in whatever way is possible. That feeling of a shared experience with those looking at my work.Being passionate about painting has served me well over the years, both in my career as an illustrator and as a gallery artist. Working every day with color, form, composition and line has loaded my brush with a lot of experience. The things I like about creating an illustration carry over to things I like in doing my gallery work, telling a story, communicating with the viewer, catching and holding their interest.
My inspiration comes from the sunlit world in Southern Florida, as well as the crowded sidewalks of New York City and the endless variety of Maine. It also comes from dreams. I am not content to simply paint the view, but instead want to bring out mysteries and emotions lurking beneath its realistic surface.I grew up in South America and the UK, as well as the US and Canada, and graduated with a Bachelor in Fine Art degree from Pratt Institute. Being a realistic painter at a time when that was very much out of style, I found my way into doing paintings for paperback book covers, one of the last genres that appreciated realistic oil painting. As the number of my illustrations accumulated and moved up towards several thousand, I kept up my own work, experimenting with style and technique, showing here and there. Somewhere along the line, I noticed a blurring of the line between Illustration and gallery art. I was applying all the heart and soul of my personal work to “jobs” and using the possibilities I was seeing in illustration in my “fine art” work.And that’s where I stand now, continuing to produce illustrations as well as paintings for galleries, with the excitement of each giving something to the other.