Today we’d like to introduce you to Edgar Gutierrez.
Edgar, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I started to really get into art around 14 or 15. That’s when the drawings on my school notebooks transitioned to paintings on canvas. Around that time the group of friends I hung out with were really into graffiti so that had a heavy influence on me. They showed me different markers, spray paint and how to make my own stickers. This made me slowly began to experiment with different mediums and push my creativity even further. I began making my own stencils, stickers, shirts, I also started to create hand drawn cd covers, flyers and logos my friends who had their own bands.
Up until that point everything I was doing was by hand and it wasn’t until I was in the 11th grade when I took a graphic design class where I started to learn how to create things digitally, that’s where everything kinda came together. I began to learn different design programs, Techniques, rules of design and began to apply that to what I had already been creating. Around the same time, I also took a photography class where I learned how to use a film camera and develop my own film. I got into Photography as a pretty much a hobby so I would mostly photograph me hanging out with my friends, or places and events I would go to.
After I graduated high school, I decided to study graphic design. While I was in college, I began to attend different art events around Los Angeles and The San Fernando Valley. Attending these events really motivated me and from 2013-2016 I began looking for opportunities to get my work noticed and gain experience. Around this time I met Muralist Manny Velazquez and I began to volunteer on different mural projects on “The Mural Mile” along Van Nuys Blvd in Pacoima. In order to gain a sense of confidence with my art I began to donate paintings to different benefit shows and charity auctions so that my pieces would be displayed in public spaces. Eventually, I slowly Began displaying my original paintings, stickers, prints and photography at different Art Walks, galleries and Art shows around Los Angeles and The San Fernando Valley. During this time, I met a many different artists, muralists, designers who began to mentor me, gave me advice and encourage me to continue creating and designing.
I am currently still designing, painting and participating in art shows here and there. But I’m mainly focusing on creating new content and working on a new projects.
Has it been a smooth road?
No it hasn’t been but I think it’s never a smooth road for anyone, rejection and failure are all apart of the process to getting better.
At first one of my biggest challenges was feeling like I missing out on opportunities. Only because sometimes I would have my sights on an opportunity and it wouldn’t follow through so it would make me feel like I missed out on a once in a lifetime chance, But as time has gone on I’ve learned to not take things so serious, and that opportunities are always around.
We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
As a graphic designer and artist, I always aim to create work that has a meaning or conveys a message. As I grow as an artist I’d like to continue to use my platform to bring awareness to different social issues such as police brutality, gentrification, immigration, racism.
I think that what sets me apart from others is that I have a distinct style in my work that I have developed throughout the past couple of years. I take influence from everything around me whether it’s music, my culture or my experiences and I incorporate it in my art.
Currently, I am planning on displaying my work at different art shows/events around Los Angeles. I’m also working on creating new paintings, screen prints, digital prints, stickers and shirts with my artwork on it.
Aside from my own personal work, I along with 2 of my friends recently began a clothing brand (@thewest_818). This is something that we’ve wanted to do for long time and finally started it. We wanted to create something that represent us and where we grew up.
I am also working on another clothing project with a close friend of mine. We are currently in the early stages of the project and we’re taking our time and making sure we get everything right.
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Nipsey Hussle Mural Painted by Levi Ponce, Mikey Rivera and Red Ortiz
I would like to thank my My grandparents, friends and family who have always supported me. I would like to thank muralist/artist Manny Velazquez (@esevatoman1) who has been a mentor to me, and has continued to give me great advice and encourage me to be creative. I would also like to thank Luis Gomez for showing me the business side of graphic design and has always been there when I need help.
I would like to shout out the friends around my block that I grew up with who have influenced me in many ways, who I have shared many of experiences with and who have always encouraged me to create . I also want to shout out the homies that live on Malden street who have supported me from day one.