When Serge met So­rayama

ImagineFX - - Pin-up art -

Ja­panese pin-up mas­ter was a big in­spi­ra­tion for the French artist Serge Bi­rault. Here Serge speaks to his idol…

Where does your in­ter­est in pin-up art come from? Oh, maybe just be­cause I wanted to cre­ate my own god­dess. Can you ex­plain why you’re so in­spired by the world of fetish? I like shiny stuff. I like metal­lic sur­faces, PVC, mem­branes. I just feel they’re sexy. I think this par­tic­u­lar fetish is a sort of dis­ease that has af­fected a small num­ber of people across the gen­er­a­tions. I’ve fol­lowed your work for more than 25 years and your style has changed. Are you go­ing back to vin­tage pin-up stuff? Form my point of view my style hasn’t changed that much. I’m an om­niv­o­rous an­i­mal so I don’t even know my­self what kind of poop I’ll pro­duce. What’s your main tech­ni­cal in­flu­ence, and why did you start us­ing an air­brush? To me, pho­to­graphs and the art of print­ing are my tech­ni­cal teach­ers. Us­ing an air­brush is one tool that’s very ef­fi­cient for small, key por­tions of each art­work, but it’s the ic­ing on the cake. For a lot of people you’re an air­brush artist, yet this isn’t your main tool I‘m not that good at the air­brush. It’s just one of my soldiers I em­ploy to cre­ate il­lus­tra­tions. It’s not the only sol­dier. If people take the time to study my works, they can tell that I don’t use an air­brush a lot. I use pen­cils, tiny brushes and then, at the end, an air­brush. Do you think the air­brush is a tool of the past? A lot of people still use it as a hobby, but few use it pro­fes­sion­ally now… Per­haps fewer pro­fes­sional artists are us­ing the air­brush now, when paint­ing soft­ware con­tains sim­i­lar fil­ters. But I think there are still pro­fes­sional house or car painters, model kits mak­ers, nail artists, and make-up artists who are still us­ing the air­brush.

Do you teach? No, I don’t. I have some tu­to­ri­als on the DVD and in one of my books. If I have some free time, I’d rather cre­ate an­other paint­ing. Do you ever try dig­i­tal paint­ing? What do you think about it? I’ve never tried dig­i­tal paint­ing and I can’t use com­put­ers. If I need to use it, I man­age and cre­ate it to be done else­where. If both meth­ods co-ex­ist to­gether and stim­u­late each other, I think that’s won­der­ful. What ad­vice could you give to pin-up artists who are just start­ing out? The pin-up mar­ket is shrink­ing or be­ing di­luted, so if you’re think­ing about mak­ing money as a pin-up artist, then I would say bet­ter not be­come one. You’re my main in­flu­ence and I’m not the only one – you’re an in­spi­ra­tion for a lot of artists or de­sign­ers. Do you re­alise this? If I’ve in­spired any artists, I feel very hon­oured. I ap­pre­ci­ate be­ing the one whose foot­steps they fol­low to find their own unique path. I think ex­cel­lent sense is in­spired by a greater sense and a new tech­nique will be soon taken over by a newer tech­nique. Serge san, let’s try our best to sur­vive in this world of art. I think sense is the most im­por­tant and a ne­ces­sity in the world of art.

Skin and hair Serge’s pupils of­ten ask, ‘How do you do the hair, the skin?’ But what about the la­tex?! shine a light This paint­ing by So­rayama is French pin-up artist Serge Bi­rault’s all-time favourite – the light play­ing on the shim­mer­ing wa­ter mak­ing a link with many of Serge’s pieces. Air­brush who? So­rayama may be known for his air­brush work, but as Serge found out, he only uses it spar­ingly.

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