Tuesday, March 23, 2010
My huge 3' x 2' Illustration for Tiger Beer won a spot in the Communication Arts 51 Illustration Annual. A first for me, finally!
This was for Tiger Beer. They invited me to be a part of their "Tiger Translate" artist series that they have every so often. It is the biggest physical size i've ever done. it's 3 feet by 2 feet. Printed out this is a beaut. This year's tiger translate theme Change/Society. This piece is about losing culture. Here is my little statement: "Since I’ve been living in China I have been attracted to tiger hats and tiger toys for children because these representations of tigers are very different than western interpretations. In Chinese culture the tiger hat is meant to protect children from evil spirits and other bad things. I thought the tiger hat would be perfect for this concept because it is supposed to protect the boy yet it needs the boy to protect it from becoming another forgotten tradition. This made me think about how culture is always changing resulting in old traditions being lost. As an artist I am saddened by the loss of visual culture, such as these tiger hats. The orange tigers represent some of the ways culture is lost. A lot of my friends' immigrant parents withheld their culture from their children to westernize the children thinking it would give them a better life. Some people reject their culture or it could be forcibly taken and outlawed. It could be bastardized, commercialized or watered down. These are represented by different tigers in this illustration. Behind it all this piece has a positive message. The hat is a cultural icon that you can physically see but it also represents the boy's culture as a whole, a symbol of what he needs to protect. It's tied firmly to his head, giving us hope that he will be one of the few that preserves his cultural heritage."
I'm working on 3 more of these to make a nice series. they take a long time so we'll see how far i get into this. I brainstormed on this piece for weeks so i had some other really good concepts that I wanted to do as well.