Good afternoon readers! Today we are joined by the wonderful artist Mike Denning. You can view more of his art on his facebook page. His art is quite sensual and beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing with us Mike.
1) How did you become a part of the psp tube community?
I received several offers from psp tube companies and questions from individual taggers around 11 years ago, but I didn't know what it was back then. After learning about tubes and tags, I jumped at the first offer I got a few years ago, which wound up not working out too well. I switched over to another psp tube company since then that has served me quite well.
2) What does your artwork mean to you?
For starters, I love drawing the human body and I love to to display basic sexuality in my work, which bothers some people but, to me, is just a part of being alive on this planet and nothing to be ashamed of. I, as well as other artists who often work with the human form (whether it's a fine-art nude, a pin-up or erotica), have to deal with people being uptight, nervous or sometimes just plain upset at anything that showcases the nude form and exudes a degree of sexuality or sensuality in the piece. After 17 years (off and on) of creating pin-up/erotic art, I have taken up a social commentator like stance on my work. I'm celebrating the human form, love, life and one form of human emotion in my work and showing people that it's okay and nothing offensive or vulgar. My work is never explicit, but even still, some people get upset or at least uneasy. I want to show that, again, the human form and sensuality/sexuality is okay and nothing to freak out over.
3) What inspires you in creating your artwork?
The love of the human form, which is a beautiful work of art in and of itself and the fun in taking this complex three-dimensional form and rendering it to the best of my ability.
4) How long have you been selling psp tubes?
Roughly about 2 1/2 years now.
5) How do you create your artwork? Is it by hand
or digitally? What tools do you use in doing the artwork?
All of my artwork is done by hand. The originals are all 9" x 12" and done with colored pencils on 80 pound colored pastel paper.
6)Aside from psp tubes, what else do you create
with your artwork?
Most of my works are done with the idea of them becoming tubes later. In addition to the pin-up/erotica artwork I do, I create portraits from time to time. I have also done two album covers for motivational speaker and musicial Joe Vitale; three book covers with a fourth one coming soon for an art collector and author friend of mine; character concept art for an independently made Sci-Fi film; and an illustration of a hand giving the middle finger for a cancer research fundraiser - which I am very proud to say was spear-headed by Michael Gross who was the art director for National Lampoon Magazine and co-produced the animated film "Heavy Metal" and both Ghostbusters films as well as it's mid-to-late 80's animated series.
7) As you have developed your style and artwork, which artists
have influenced you?
There have been many artists and photographers whose works have influenced me over the years. For starters, the pin-up art of Alberto Vargas (saw his work for the first time when I was five years old), George Petty, Gil Elvgren, Alain Alsan and Olivia deBeradinis. Boris Vallejo and definitely Frank Frazetta are two fantasy artists whose paintings of the human form really lit a fire for me, creatively. Also the photographs of Bunny Yeager, John Derek, Sante d'Orazio, Helmut Newton and Patrick Demarchlier to name a few. Bettie Page, Brigitte Bardot and Madonna have also served as influences on my work over the years, too. Mind you, while I may be inspired by all of these people and they certainly have had a tremendous influence on what I do (among other people and things), I have never had the desire to mimic them in any way. They did what they did and I'm doing what I need to do. Kind of like some guy who loves Jimi Hendrix's guitar playing so much that he eventually learns to play just like Jimi or some other guitar god. I have no respect for that. Be inspired by others, but do your own thing.
8) Does the psp community help artists become more well known
with getting their names and artwork more visible?
I think it certainly does; but to what extent, I think, depends on the artist and how they present themselves. For me, I submit new works when I can, sit back and see what happens. I'm often more involved in promoting my work in other venues.
9) What do you enjoy the most about being part of the psp community?
Those moments when someone from the community shares their re-workings of my art on Facebook. It's always fun to see what people do. Quite often, I see the women of my artwork adorned with flowers or butterflies and it makes the work much more feminine and beautiful. That actually inspired me to illustrate butterflies fluttering around the model in my most recent illustration which, annoyingly got me booted off Facebook for three days.
10) What are some of your favorite art pieces which you have done and why?
I have a few pieces that I am proud of because of the amount of detail, love and care I put into them. I suffer from a crippling disease a lot of artists have which could best be described as thinking my work is just "okay" or not quite up to the level of perfection I hold for myself. Mind you, I'm not going to do a George Lucas and constantly redo old works again and again. I just make mental notes about what I think could be improved and try to do better the next time around.
11) Do you prefer tags with your art tubes animated or non animated? Or are both great to you?
Either way is fine by me. They're all beautiful to look at.
12) Do you do commissions for taggers? How about ideas for tubes which taggers may have?
I do commissions almost all of the time, but so far, none have come from taggers. If anyone out there would like to commission me to do something for them, I can be contacted on Facebook or via e-mail.
13) Is there anything which you don't allow to be done with your artwork? For example mirroring, animation, etc.
So far, I have no restrictions on anyone re-working my artwork. My only request is that taggers send me a copy of what they have done so that, I can add a page to my website showcasing all of these new versions of my works.
14) Would you like to receive tags which our readers may do featuring your artwork? We often love to send the artists tags by our readers.
Please do as I love seeing them all. As mentioned earlier, I will - eventually - put up a page on my website that will be specifically devoted to tags.