Vancouver artist Jon Shaw spent the better part of 2013 documenting the city he lives in, with paintings.
He’s been recreating Vancouver’s urban landscape through mixed media paintings for about a year and a half. His pieces are a combination of drawing and painting techniques on wood panels.
The majority of his working day is spent in the Gastown/Chinatown/Downtown East Side areas. These neighborhoods are a wealth of amazing visuals that work well with his art style.
He’s always been attracted to industrial, cluttered and gritty imagery. When he looks for subject matter for a new piece, he is looking for something that will hold his nterest for a sustained period of time. The main reason he creates art is for relaxation and personal satisfaction. For a piece to remain fun and interesting to work on, it needs to have complex visuals and ample room to play and experiment.
Therefore, dense and busy imagery attract him the most. Alleyways, shipping yards, street post signs and graffiti-laden dumpsters all fit this description, and present opportunities for new pieces.
The length of time to complete a piece depends on the size. A 36” x 36” piece, such as his newer alleyway pieces, take about 30 hours each to complete. A smaller 24” x 24” painting, such as his street posts, take about 20 hours. The largest work he has done so far, a painting of the Port Metro Vancouver shipping cranes and containers, is 36” x 48” and took 40 hours.
“I feel like this body of work has only just begun. I have so many ideas for new pieces that I can’t keep up,’ say Jon. I’m really excited about everything that’s happening art-wise and I don’t plan to stop anytime soon. Vancouver is such a perfect place to explore and find new locations and images to use for art works. In just a short bike ride you can explore so many different neighbourhoods and they all have their own unique looks and feels.
His work is available for viewing at the studio through private appointment, or through Kimoto Gallery (6th and Granville).
He also posts everything he does online. His main website is a more complete and cohesive gallery of finished paintings. The Facebook page is where he’ll post process photos of works-in-progress and show invites. His Etsy shop is where he’ll sell prints and greeting cards of his work.