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Meet Bob Diercksmeier

Today we’d like to introduce you to Bob Diercksmeier.

Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
I’m a Phoenix native, and I’ve lived here most of my life. My family moved to Connecticut when I was in grade school, I moved back to Arizona after college and have lived here ever since. I’ve created art for the majority of my life, but my serious interest in art started in high school. I took every art class the school offered, and by senior year I knew I wanted to pursue art as a career. I attended the Philadelphia College of Art, and in 1988 I graduated from the newly renamed University of the Arts with a BFA in Illustration.

After graduation I started a career in graphic design, moving back to Arizona in 1992 to work for a design firm in Phoenix. I went on to become a freelance illustrator in 1994, illustrating for a variety of local and national clients (rjd-illustration.com). In 2001, I started my own design company RJD Creative (rjdcreative.com) which has served design clients large and small for over 17 years.

When I lived in Connecticut, I fell in love with landscape painting, and in my free time, I’d work on my own drawings, pastels, and paintings. My career ended up taking over, but my passion for drawing and painting the landscape reignited in 2015. I created a body of contemporary representational landscape paintings and drawings that can be seen on rjdfineart.com. From that body of work, I began experimenting with a more abstract representation of the landscape, including abstract interpretations of various types of cacti. This is the new body of work that I’m currently working on.

Please tell us about your art.
I focus mainly on painting and drawing, and I’ve taken a few printmaking workshops in the past year. I’m in a very experimental phase right now, recently I’ve been making some stencil paintings, collage pieces, monoprints and some bigger paintings (4’ x 5’ and larger). I use traditional media — oil, pastel, pencil, charcoal, but my recent abstract work has been mainly acrylic on paper or canvas.

I’ve always had a love for the Arizona desert, so my work is primarily landscape oriented. The Sonoran desert has both a vibrant energy and a quiet mystery that makes it a very unique place, and I try to reflect those qualities in my work. The desert landscape and the cacti that live here are my muses.

I primarily use, color, shape, and line to create my work. Color is central to my process, and the palette I use ranges from subtle earth tones to vibrant, saturated fields of color. Shape is another component I utilize — I use abstracted shapes to represent natural elements including Earth, Sky, Water, Sun, and Moon. Line is the third element in my visual language — I use a continuous line in some of my pieces to convey the ongoing spirit of life in the harsh extremes of the desert climate.

I try to give a sense of the vitality and magic of the desert southwest in every piece I create. I have my own meanings behind my pieces, but I want the viewer to relate to my work on their level, to derive their own meanings from my paintings, and to have the experience of interacting with my work be their own. My hope is that my work can maybe help people to see the energy and mystery in the landscape that surrounds them each and every day.

What do you think is the biggest challenge facing artists today?
That’s a tough one, but I’d maybe say valuing our work. This operates on a few levels — seeing the value of our own work, pricing our work, knowing that our work brings real meaning and value to the people it touches. It’s also difficult when someone doesn’t see the actual monetary value in our work when they don’t want to pay the price an artist is asking.

How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
I currently am not exhibiting with a gallery right now, but I’m open to that if there is one that’s interested. People can see and purchase my work at my website bdabstracts.com. I also have some apparel and merchandise for sale at cactusvibe.com.

Contact Info:


Image credit: 
Artist photo: Cyrus Diercksmeier

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