Rhyan McReynolds's "The Chase" is our featured artwork for October 2009.
“I do it all. I’m all about music, all about art, all the time. That’s what it’s all about.” Rhyan McReynolds is a local who lives artfully. As a painter, silk screener, musician, and graphic designer, McReynolds is “straight out of Cookeville, inspired by Cookeville.” McReynolds is a fan of WCTE and likes to stay up late to watch. “My favorite is probably the Great TV Auction. It’s fun to see stuff around here and see how much it’ll go for and how everybody comes together to put on the whole show. I like staying up and watching Antiques Roadshow, and I think, ‘Oh, my granddad has one of those.’ “
McReynolds created October’s art feature with the idea of a change of heart he had in mind. “This one’s called ‘The Chase,’ but it’s more about the idea of going after something. Kind of like a dogfight… you struggle with just being around everybody, and in the same atmosphere as everybody, and there are conflicts of interest with people. And just kind of free flowing off that. Making something and doing what you want to do and sometimes standing out a little bit.
“I didn’t use silk screen but the image is a silk screen image that I had. I just thought about how cool it would look to have this weird orange color, which is like a cadmium red orange kind of color, and have an India ink, which is a hardcore ink, and when you put that over the top, it really reflects a little bit in the light. It’s just all about having an unbalanced piece, and the segmented pieces of wood break it up with the light you can kind of see through the pallet.
“Basically my inspirations are everything around me. I know that it sounds really cliché, but if you grow up in the Upper Cumberland, like I did, thinking you want to run away, then that’s when you start realizing everything that you have.
“I grew up in art, skateboarding, local theatre, and the whole music scene. I’m into graffiti art, Basquiat, everything. I’m really into t-shirts and logo identity, so that’s what inspires me, and it got me where I am right now. I make t-shirts with my friends, and I make music. Just whatever you need, give me a call. If someone wants to contact me and they have an idea and would love to commission something, I’m all about that.”
As for his style, McReynolds says, “When people think of my art, I think they think ‘color.’ I think I have a way with color because one of my favorite artists is Rothko. He has the best colors; I mean he was doing things with color way before Martha Stewart. I’m real big about color and contrast, basically balancing and unbalancing objects and pieces. I like for things to POP!”
A sample of McReynolds’ work is on display in Sweet Sallie’s Bakery & Café at 11 N. Oak Avenue in Cookeville through October. You can reach Rhyan via his website.
“If you are doing art and you like it that much, even love it, then just keep doing what you’re doing. Even though people might not buy it, that doesn’t mean anything. Just keep doing what you’re doing, whether it’s art, music, anything. Just keep doing what you’re doing if you love it, and someday someone will recognize it somewhere.”
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