Interview

Slice of summer

Victorian artist Paink served up an ace of a cover for the 2023 summer edition of Melbourne & Victoria's Official Visitor Guide. And it's all about one of his favourite events.

Melbourne artist Paink
Melbourne artist Paink creating the OVG summer 2023 cover art.

It started with an art class when he realised school wasn’t his strong suit. But it really kicked off when a group of friends working in Melbourne’s hospitality industry encouraged then-graphic designer Paink to paint a mural.

'I did more murals – one for the Australian Open, too – and shared the work I was doing on my social media,' he says. 'That was 10 years ago, and momentum kept building. About two years ago I started shifting more towards the art and painting side, which I really love.'

Now, his style incorporates elements of street art and portraiture, often including musicians, movie stars or pop culture icons as subjects.

Paink's OVG cover art draws inspiration from the Australian Open, the biggest event on Melbourne's summer calendar.

Photo by Nick La Galle

Got it Covered

The cover image relates to one of the biggest events on Melbourne’s summer sporting calendar, the Australian Open (14–28 January).

'But I’ve tried to reflect all the things that we see in summertime in Melbourne in the layers of the hand,' says the artist. 'If you look closely, you’ll see lots of things you might recognise.'

There’s ice cream and music, the MCG and Luna Park, penguins and seagulls. Plus, there’s street art, the artistic form where Paink’s career started and the one for which Melbourne is best known. 'It’s kind of an organised chaos,' he says.

 

Finding Inspiration

Paink lives with his wife and son in North Balwyn, close to where he grew up. When it comes to inspiration, exercise is important. Each day, he goes to the gym or runs with his staffy, Koh, around the neighbourhood.

'I get inspired when I draw by listening to music,' says Paink. 'All genres, depending on the vibes I’m trying to get for the types of things I’m painting, but mostly hip-hop and rap.

My son’s three, and I love seeing how he responds to painting and paint. He’s so free and interested and spontaneous – that’s inspiring for me, too.'

Paink’s works were recently exhibited at Compendium Gallery in Armadale, and are still available for purchase.

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