by Andrew Crisp
Travis Campion, whose art adorned this week's BW cover, debuted his work on the walls of Visual Arts Collective in Garden City on Feb. 3.
Campion creates tattoo-influenced illustrations, ranging from Chewbacca to flapper girls with rouge-colored cheeks. He uses freshly brewed coffee as a tool to create a sepia tone on his canvases.
"Sometimes I get a Mexican Chiapas from the co-op," said Campion, "Sometimes it's Rocket Java from WinCo."
He says the coffee affords him the ability to work in layers to create an aged effect.
"I just like the antiquing effect," said Campion. "You'll see edges where I've softened them with coffee. I tend to lean toward the early 1900s with these portraits."
Campion's influences come from his work on human skin as a tattoo artist. His style leans toward Vaudeville and Golden Era images, with a healthy Star Wars obsession thrown in. Star, a client of Campion's, walked around the opening in a glittering golden dress, her arms covered in Campion's art.
View a slideshow of the exhibit opening here.