Written by Kelly Kurdyukova

Originally from the Southeast, John Gay has travelled to festivals all over the country to paint, connect and find inspiration. His paintings consist of vibrant colors and earthy forms, and are captivating and ethereal. I recently had the pleasure of speaking with John to learn more about the person behind the art.

  1. How would define your style of art?

My art is based around other dimensional Realms, the Divine, and understanding what we do not know. The style comes from years of comic books, art history and inspiration from other artists.

  1. When did you first realize you wanted to be an artist? 

When I was in grade school, my teacher told my mom that she was not exactly sure what I would do when I got older, but I would be an artist of some sort. I’ve been drawing since I can remember. The encouragement I received eventually made me pursue this path.

  1. Describe your creative process. Are there certain steps you take before getting in the zone?

I like to paint it night. I really like the witching hours of 2 a.m. to 5 a.m. They say the barrier between Realms opens during these hours, so I like to play around then.

      4. Which other artists inspire you? Could be from different styles or or artistic mediums.                           

Frank Frazetta, Alphonso Mucha, Michael Turner, H.R. Giger.

5. Do you have a preferred style or genre of music that you prefer to play while in the studio? What’s your favorite album right now?

My playlist is my favorite album right now. It spans from downtempo Drum and Bass, which I prefer most of the time, to Bluegrass, Classic Rock and Experimental. Some of my top favorites are Bonobo, STS9, Modest Mouse and Little Dragon.

  1. Do you prefer to paint in private or in a concert setting? Are there elements to both that you like?

Over the past five years of painting professionally, I have learned I do not like to paint in public, simply because I cannot get focused on my work. I do enjoy my studio time because I can sit and be confused at what I’m doing without the judgment of others.

  1. Do you have advice for other artists or aspiring artists that you want to pass on?

If you enjoy it, keep doing it. Do it for yourself and no one else. Don’t give up on your dream, inspire to inspire.


Keep an eye out for John at a festival near you, and make sure to follow his art online.

Website: http://johngayart.weebly.com

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/johngayart