We love the work of Bruce White. Why? Because Star Wars and black velvet paintings are both awesome, that’s why.
We tracked down this master (Jedi, of course) and asked him about his work. Let there be no question about his geek bona fides.
Well, I collect vintage Star Wars toys. One of our collector “go to” sites is theswca.com, which has loads of reference info on all things Star Wars. It also has an entry on this vintage Star Wars velvet painting. I became fascinated with it for some reason, thinking “I bet I can do that”. It took a few attempts, but gradually I started to get the hang of it. When you look at any velvet painting in person, in proper lighting, it has an interesting visual impact. The light reflects off the paint, while being absorbed by the fabric, which really makes the subjects “pop”, for lack of a better term. It’s difficult to get that across in a photo of a velvet painting.
Why Star Wars and other geeky subjects?
I grew up with these movies and TV shows, and I still enjoy them. Simple as that, really. My “artist mission statement” (if I wrote one) would say something like, “Oh, hey, you know what would look cool on velvet?”
Do you think you’re doing something different than, say, all the artists who’ve painted Elvis or half-naked ladies on velvet? Or do you see yourself as part of the same tradition?
No, not really. To me, Darth Vader is just as big a cultural icon as Elvis. But, maybe that’s just me.
What’s your favorite velvet painting, not counting your own?
It’s difficult to find vintage paintings that are undamaged. I’ve passed up a few awesomely horrible unicorns because they were too far gone. I do have a terrible velvet of a man wearing a sombrero, napping against a cactus, with a mountain scene in the background.
What else you got?
Vintage Star Wars toys, with many carded Princess Leia figures from different countries. Because Leia is awesome.
For more of Bruce White’s work, including velvet paintings of other sci-fi icons, visit VelvetGeek.com.