Q&A - Chris Oh | Painter

For those who don't already know, what do you do?

I am a painter.

What made you want to get into creating?
I started drawing as a kid and was lucky enough to get the right kind of encouragement, so I kept at it. I wasn't very good at anything else.

What's the biggest misconception about what you do? 
People often think my work is printed, but that's what I'm going for so I can't necessarily blame them. One of my biggest challenges is to incorporate realism into my work in a way that is fresh and interesting to me.

What are some things that have influenced your work?
Science fiction, ancient myths, comic books, trash on the street.. I'm really into imagery from different subcultures, so I seek out a lot of that ephemera. I like old things. 

Can you think of an artist that when you learned about them you were in awe?
A teacher in high school introduced me to Cezanne. His life's work was the first that I really studied in-depth. When I understood how revolutionary his ideas were, I was amazed that one person could be capable of so much ingenuity. I saw making art as a lifetime pursuit.

If you could choose an album that played when someone was viewing your work, what would that be? 
Maybe no music.. just some white noise.

Tell us about a time you visited a new place and were inspired. 
I took a road trip through Arizona a few years ago with some friends, my first one through the desert. We drove through the state camping and hiking, going through different terrain. The land and sky seemed so vast in the Southwest. Our lives revolve around water. I had very romantic expectations about finding inspiration at the time, like I would be slammed by some grand epiphany. But the influence was subtle.. time slowed down and I never thought about work. I didn't realize how much of an impression it made on me until I found it months later in a lot of my paintings.

What's something you disliked at first, but now are into? 
Fleetwood Mac.

If anyone dead or alive could paint a portrait of you who would it be?
Dang, that's a tough one.. the German painter George Grosz would be amazing. I heard George W. Bush paints, that would be really strange. 

@cchris.ohh // www.chrisoh.com