In the world of Kustom Kulture, where artistic expression and automotive passion intersect, one artist stands out for his unique creations. Meet HIX of HixGarage, a talented painter who specializes in transforming skateboards, gas cans, and road signs into captivating works of art. In this interview, we dive into HIX’s creative process, influences, and memorable moments in his artistic career.
Growing up, HIX found inspiration in Saturday morning cartoons, sketching his favorite characters and cars. However, it was his father’s love for hot rodding that ignited his fascination with the old-school arts of Kustom Kulture. The combination of his artistic inclinations and exposure to car shows led him down a path of exploration and creativity.
HIX says his style is hard to categorize, as it encompasses elements of his childhood drawings and the grungy aesthetics he developed while working with watercolors and inks. He follows a fluid creative process, often juggling multiple projects and pursuing ideas as they come to him. Sketching plays a crucial role in his work, whether on paper or digitally, as it helps him visualize and refine his concepts.
When faced with creative blocks, HIX takes a refreshing approach. Instead of fixating on the obstacle, he steps away from the project and immerses himself in something new. By distracting his mind with different activities, he allows his subconscious to work on the challenge in the background. This approach often leads to “a-ha” moments and breakthroughs.
One of the standout moments in HIX’s artistic career was being invited to Dennis McPhail’s Kustom Kulture Art show Xmas party. Surrounded by an impressive lineup of talented artists, HIX had the opportunity to meet and connect with those who inspired him in the Kustom Kulture art scene. The experience left a lasting impact and further fueled his passion for his craft.
Like any artist, HIX has faced criticism and negative feedback online. To protect his artistic space and maintain a positive environment, he takes a proactive approach by blocking negative individuals without hesitation. By prioritizing his focus on creating art and fostering support from his true fans, he shields himself from unnecessary negativity.
Looking ahead, HIX has a keen interest in collaborating on car or truck building projects. While he has specific people in mind, he acknowledges that he is still relatively unknown in those circles. However, he remains open to opportunities and is eager to explore new collaborative ventures in the future.
HIX believes in building connections with his audience and collectors. He engages in conversations, finding common ground through their shared passion for the car community. Feedback plays a significant role in his artistic process, and so far, he has been fortunate to receive overwhelming positive responses, encouraging him to continue pushing boundaries.
Among his recent projects, HIX takes pride in painting his father’s trunk lid for his ’31 Ford coupe. Despite the request for a Fink-inspired design, HIX tailored the artwork to match the car’s black and gray aesthetics. Witnessing his father’s genuine appreciation for the piece filled him with a sense of accomplishment and joy.
While HIX holds formal art training in Graphic Design and marketing, his skills in painting and drawing are primarily self-taught. He dedicated considerable time to learning techniques such as pinstriping, practicing daily for over a year. With his day job no longer in the way, HIX now focuses on his art full-time.
HIX primarily uses Alpha6corp enamel paint, appreciating its versatility and the way he can manipulate it in his art. When it comes to brushes, he believes that it’s the artist’s skill, rather than the specific brush, that matters most. However, he has a fondness for the Monster brushes from Mack and Tidwell.
Despite the potential challenges of a heavy commission load, HIX finds motivation in the fact that he gets to pursue his passion daily. As long as his family continues to support him, he remains determined to push forward and explore new artistic horizons.
Social media has played a crucial role in HIX’s journey. Initially hesitant to share his work online, he eventually embraced platforms such as Instagram, where he posts ongoing projects, finished or not. This strategy has proven successful in gaining visibility and connecting with art enthusiasts.
To aspiring artists in the Kustom scene, HIX offers advice that goes beyond the traditional “practice, practice, practice.” He encourages artists to develop their own style and skills, rather than trying to replicate others’ work. By staying true to their own artistic voice and consistently practicing their craft, they will find their unique place in the art world.
Beyond painting, HIX finds joy in tinkering with cars and hot rods. Additionally, he enjoys playing basketball with his son, engaging in activities that provide balance and fulfillment in his life.
In conclusion, HIX embodies the spirit of Kustom Kulture art through his distinctive creations and unwavering dedication to his craft. From childhood influences to memorable experiences, his journey is a testament to the power of passion and self-expression. With each stroke of the brush, HIX leaves an indelible mark on the vibrant world of Kustom Kulture art, sharing his love for cars and artistic talent with enthusiasts worldwide.
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