Distorted Youth – My 100 project

Around this time last year I had just finished up my first 100 project – Distorted Youth. And if you’re not familiar with that idea – it pretty much means creating 100 pieces of art. I had this idea back at the beginning of 2016, where I wanted to invest some time staying creative outside of a computer and get back into acrylic painting. The concept behind Distorted Youth happened while stumbling upon some cartoons that I used to watch as a child, almost 15 years ago.

While listening to this cartoon I first noticed how the characters I thought I remembered so well, where sounding a lot different than what I could remember. I felt as though I had never watched these shows before. This concept sparked the idea for what growing older has become for me – Distorted memories.

I wanted to push this idea of distorting my childhood, which in this case, begin with cartoons. I wanted to consistently distort particular cartoon characters in a portrait-style acrylic painting. One parameter I established was to use one character from each cartoon. This restriction allowed me to explore more cartoons from my childhood and refine a list of 100 cartoons. Upon finishing this project and hanging each painting on the same wall, I was able to see the effect that all of these cartoons have made on everyone around me. Each person that stood in front of these paintings had a connection with at least one painting. Cartoons exist in almost all of our childhoods but this project made me realize that we’re growing older and remembering less and less of the impact cartoons had on us.

By diving into this project, I was able to understand more about why I love illustrating so much. I chose my illustrative path because of cartoons. I have always enjoyed how each character style could be so unique. It was an interesting process bringing all 100 characters together by the same distortion.
Here’s a video I made from documenting the whole process.