The Artwork of Matt Boney

Illustration, Design, and Fine Art

From a very young age and as an artist, I have always simply enjoyed the process of creating images, starting with a blank piece of material accessible to anyone and turning into something that no other person would. Yes, this is indeed quite a broad statement to open an artist’s statement with however it does serve as a proper springboard for describing my work and the creative process behind it.

While studying at the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan to obtain a BFA in Illustration, pop culture, media, and the commercial art world heavily influenced my work at the time. Upon graduation in 2005, my immediate goals had become deeply involved with working with publications and graphic design studios, often times in a corporate environment and almost exclusively working digitally.  Despite having found a glimpse of success in that arena, I quickly found myself feeling creatively tapped out and wanting to spend more time exploring my own aesthetic values.

My current creative process is one of constantly and quietly gathering inspiration from the world around me, creating images loosely based on those experiences, and ultimately using those images as a vehicle to offer the viewer an opportunity to see something or be somewhere s/he has not experienced before… or sometimes to simply notice common occurrences worth noticing. Most times the essence of what I am trying to capture or the desired mood of the piece will dictate the medium used- an encounter with a charming character should  indeed  appear warm, organic, and inviting.  A next generation racecar should  have a slick, cool, and calculated appearance. On the other hand occasional exceptions will apply as the juxtaposition of conflicting standards can be appealing- not unlike a shootout or chase scene set to “Piano Sonata No. 8.” Regardless of the intended feeling or medium used I always like to allow just a hint of the aesthetic values of my commercial past bleed through which somehow always results in something of a graphic nature. This can mean lines that are slightly harder than would be necessary, use of highly saturated color, or perhaps just an obsessive amount of detail.

Favored mediums currently tend to be acrylic paint and/or dry media (graphite) on various surfaces, though wood panel has become my latest most sought after material. The way wood accepts different materials, naturally offers a gentle mid tone when asked, and comes with a certain heft that paper and canvas do not are all aspects that I appreciate. This does not preclude the use of more common materials nor reverting back to an all digital approach when appropriate.

In regard to subject matter I am content with admitting that I generally draw creative energy from some of the most random and arbitrary of places- fellow artists, scientific reading material, funny or engaging stories told by friends, and even movies or video games. Occasionally, deeper emotional concepts are addressed as well but I am not one to set out to tackle political activism, social commentary, or challenging viewpoints, nor do I ever really depart from purely representational work. I feel this keeps the creative process enjoyable and the work immediately accessible to the viewer.  I embrace the fact that I naturally lean toward this approach and do not feel married to a particular subject matter or viewpoint as it lends itself to a diverse body of work- a collection of images that just about any person could somehow relate to.