Finger painting is something that most of us leave behind as soon as we fine-tune our motor skills. After all, painting ponies and rainbows is way easier with brushes, and as we get older, making messes becomes less and less entertaining by the day.
But for one digital artist, finger painting is the name of the game. Using nothing but an iPad and his own two hands, he creates hyperrealistic paintings that rival anything created with a brush.
The level of detail that Spanish artist Jaime Sanjuan achieves is incredible by anyone’s standards, but hearing about his technique makes his work even more impressive.
After earning a degree in fine arts, Sanjuan became deeply interested in the role of new technology in the creative process. The only problem was that most of his training was fairly traditional.
The sad reality was that his schooling ultimately drained his bank account and robbed him of his ability to create. “When I finished my studies,” he writes, “the crisis began.”
In a cruel twist of fate, dedicating his life to an arts education forced him to leave his creativity behind for years. “I had no job, and I didn’t have enough money to rent a studio or buy painting materials. Because of that, I stopped painting for 4 years.”
And the more you look at his work, the more tragic that seems. After he was given an iPad, however, his entire perspective on art changed.
“With the help of this tool, I don’t need a studio,” he writes, “and I don’t need to buy materials to create my paintings.” One seemingly small gift gave Sanjuan his creative life back.
While one could easily argue that technology sits at the helm of many social and cultural shortcomings, there’s something to be said for what one device did for an artist who was down on his luck. As such, Jaime Sanjuan wants to impart a bit of wisdom unto fellow artists who are stuck in a rut: “If you have a tablet or a smartphone, you have an entire studio in your pocket.”