Studio Process

Marroquin's Studio
Marroquin’s Studio

When you enter my studio you will see a small space with a desk and a work bench with several paintings and drawings in progress. Surrounded with completed work and materials it is a space that promotes focus and tranquility. Lined with paint, brushes, canvas, paper, pencils and charcoal it is often a bit cluttered as I always have more than one project going on at once. My cupboards are stocked with magazines, books, bits of metal, plastic, tags, wire and other found material which I incorporate into my artwork.

While my studio space is enormously important to my technique of creation, my process actually begins on a completely conceptual level. On a daily basis I read and listen to news and contemporary and historical commentary. As I contemplate these current and historic events throughout the day I begin to formulate ideas, pictures and solid concepts in my mind.   

I then transfer these ideas into a sketchbook. Filled with sketches and text, my sketchbook holds these ideas until I am able to use them. It is also a place where I often finalize schemes, compositions, titles, measurements, themes, and lists. I imagine anyone looking at my sketchbook would find it very cryptic and hard to understand. My notes, however make perfect sense to me. I store my concepts and and return to them later when I need inspiration or ideas. I love returning to past sketchbooks to see a continuation in time and practice. Much like the practice of keeping a diary, I can very clearly see where I began and then I will know where I am heading. These sketchbooks keep me on track and drive me forward.

Sketchbook pages
Sketchbook pages

With my concepts already largely worked out, transferring them to canvas or paper is the next step in my process. I often begin by tacking a canvas to a wooden board to stretch it and then generously coat it with several layers of clear matte medium allowing each layer to dry in between. Then I apply acrylic paint and layers of different collage material, adding additional layers of matte medium as I work and finishing with a final layer of medium on the top. It is frequently a lengthy and difficult process but by working intently I am able to tweak my concept and process to maximize my intent and the effect on the viewer.

From initial concept to final artwork it is a hard but very satisfactory process. As I expose truth in our collective history and contemporary life I am often disturbed and appalled by what I learn and discover. I feel it necessary to share that truth with a greater audience through my art. With each completed project, I feel a sense of relief, knowing that I have passed on a bit of information that is imperative to a more equitable and sustainable future.