using the airbrush as an art student 15 years ago, and has done a wide variety
of work with the tool since, including the van and motorcycle type.
Though he still does other commercial work, Gatica said that he would like to concentrate more on murals.
He smiles when asked if it bothers him to think that his work could get painted over someday.
"Hopefully, in another few years, Ill be in a position to go buying these walls from these people." he said.
WATERBURY - The airbrush hasn't reached high-brow status just yet.
It's probably best known as the
tool photographers use to hide lines and blemishes in portraits. Airbrushes
are also responsible for the sunsets and moonlit surf scenes that ride around
on the sides of vans and the reclining beauties that grace motorcycles.
But Waterbury artist Ray Gatica is taking the high pressure panning process into the realm of Michelangelo and Giotto. Gatica, 37, does airbrush murals.
An airbrush uses a tank of compressed nitrogen to spray paint onto a work surface. The result is a smooth slick look.
Gatica got into murals three years ago when he was airbrushing pictures and patterns on fingernails. One of the salon owners he was working with wanted to promote the nail-care services she offered, so she asked Gatica to paint a mural for the manicure section of her shop.
He complied with a chic chapeaued woman resting an impeccably manicured hand on her shoulder, has since done murals to adorn other salons, an exercise club and an optician's shop.
But he'd rather not call them murals. He prefers the term, "interior design wall graphics." "Mural" conjures images of rolling hills to Gatica, but he isn't going for a pastoral look with his wall creations, he said.
The HARTFORD COURANT
for art status