Next up in our interview series, First Place winner of the Automotive Arts category, Jordon Bourgeault, talks about the deep meaning behind his entry, the path that led him to becoming an airbrusher, and the experiences that set him up to being an ‘everything guy’ when it comes to airbrushing! Be sure to check out more of Jordon’s amazing works in the links at the end of the interview!
Sparmax (S): Can you tell us a little bit about yourself, what is your background? When did you start airbrushing and what was the learning process was like for you?
Jordon Bourgeault (JB): I would draw a little bit as a child but then stopped during high school getting into drumming and skateboarding. One of my first real jobs was automotive / industrial painting, where my coworkers suggested since I had a bit of an art background I should get an airbrush. I did and I watched some videos and bought a book, but mostly I would just learn from trial and error. I painted a few things for myself, family and friends and eventually got a job at a large prop making company in the paint shop. We would make and paint large scale props and art pieces like dinosaurs for museums, parade floats, movie sets etc. I did that job for a year and was still doing jobs on the side till eventually I had enough jobs piling up that I started doing it full time. That was about 8 years ago and have been working as an airbrusher out of my garage ever since.
S: Can you tell us a bit more about your winning entry piece? How / why did you choose it? How long did it take, and what inspired you?
JB: This piece is entitled Blue Eyed Angel and it is a memorial piece for a woman who lost her 3 year old daughter to a car accident. This was a very heavy theme and I did not take it lightly and struggled throughout trying to make every part of it as good as I possibly could. I worked completely organically on this job, and by that I mean I did not have a drawn up design or an idea of what the product would look like at the end so I just started with what I knew I wanted and worked from there, letting what happened next and the design process progress naturally as I worked. The design includes portraits (or memories) of the girl painted in sepia tones bordered in filigree with her favourite types of flowers. A blue sky background with the girl as an angel is the focal point on the front fairing, as well as marble and frost accents that signifying strength and innocence are also featured throughout the design. This was one of the most difficult pieces I’ve done, both in its technicality and it’s concept. This job took me around 300 hours making it one of the most time consuming jobs I’ve done as well as one I’m most proud of, all these reasons combined are why I chose to enter this particular piece as my only entry in this competition.
S: What does airbrushing mean to you and what drives your passion for airbrushing and creating art? Also, how do you find the ideas for your other works?
JB: Airbrushing is one of many passions and hobbies of mine, and I am grateful that I get to have my passion become my job. I think what inspires me the most is my customer, I generally only do commission work and I really try and get myself into the head of my client, after all it is their piece and they are the person you are creating this for. This is what allows me to be the most creative, the customer brings me an idea, and I get to go from there, a lot of the great concepts I’ve been able to work on were not originally my idea, but I got to take them and shape them into something more and put my twist on it. That as well as the technical side of always trying to learn and try new techniques is what keeps pushing me.
S: What are your goals / targets for airbrushing? What do you want to achieve?
JB: I just want to keep growing and learning, I feel like if I keep getting better and keep challenging myself I will constantly feel rewarded and stay interested in the craft. I feel like the achievements and recognition come from time to time but those are secondary, or the result of the hard work, but not the aim of it. I just wanna keep getting better and expand my skill set, any success will come naturally as I progress.
S: Do you specialize or prefer to work on a specific surface?
JB: I’ve sort of set myself up as an ‘everything guy’ in that I’ve painted large murals, shoes, helmets, masks, cars, bikes, even body paint… I’m kind of willing to tackle any challenge. However lately I’m wanting to put my focus on detail. In the near future I am aiming to try and make every piece high detailed and as crazy as can be.. The simple jobs that don’t challenge me are becoming of less interest and want to set myself up in the niche of extremely high detail. Whether it be body paint, a car, a goalie mask… The medium can be anything, as long as the art and the challenge interest me.
S: How would you describe your style(s) in airbrushing?
JB: Well definitely a detail guy, I like realism as well and portrait work, however I don’t think I’m confined to any of those things. Again I would probably put myself as an everything guy, especially because I’m working on commissions, rather than pieces for myself.
S: Any advice to beginners looking to start airbrushing?
JB: My advice is just to simply learn as much as you can and grow always, even if you think the price you quoted is too low, or you’re losing your shirt because you are spending to much time.. It’s temporary, if the work is good, the reward will come in time. I truly believe that.
S: Do you have a website or blog? How can people reach you on social media?
instagram: @jboairbrush https://www.instagram.com/jboairbrush/?hl=en