April sees the very first exhibition from Manchester-based electronic illustrator Peatree Bojangles.
Peatree is the pseudonym of Sharan Dhaliwal, an artist who uses technology, along with traditional methods, to produce stunning images of familiar faces. But just what is electronic illustration? “It’s just a fancy pants way of saying ‘digital art’ really. I create my work using pencils and pads to start with, establishing tones and shadowing. I then move onto my computer, where I add all the exciting stuff, like colour. And blood. And so on”. Peatree has produced pieces featuring a range of celebrities, from Hollywood stars like Christian Bale to iconic musicians like Robert Smith.
For me, the Bale piece really stands out from the collection but I wanted to know which image the artist is most proud of, “It’s called ‘Peace’; some sexy chick in a bikini doing the ‘peace’ sign. It’s one of the first pieces I ever illustrated”. Having gained some attention producing these striking artworks, Peatree now receives commissions and requests for illustrations whilst also taking her own cue from popular culture.
As is required today, Peatree has a lively online presence (I discovered her on Twitter), so does social networking help with selling her work? “Most of my work has been sold to my lovely Twitter fans/friends. Can I call them fans? Cliental. That’s better”. Despite the online success its obviously vital for artists to exhibit, something that almost escaped Ms. Bojangles, “a friend said to me ‘When’s your next exhibition Peatree?’ To which I replied…’Hmmm…’ Realising I have never had an exhibition. What a disgrace. It’s about time, right?”
Not a character to be content with a gallery show, Peatree also has future plans to expand her output, “I’m working on gathering some writers to begin my graphic novel. I can’t write myself, I can barely spell. Also, more exhibitions, more illustrations, more designs, maybe some paintings”. For now, Kraak gallery plays host to the first Peatree Bojangles exhibition on April 13th . This is the chance to check out some of her intricate artwork and meet Peatree in her party dress. Oh, and there’s free wine.