“I always wanted my father to be proud of my work. It felt good being back at home, after all these years, and having him watch me do what I do for a living. This painting was the last one my father got to see me create.” Drew Brophy
In December, Western Digital (WD) asked me to paint a mural to put on display at their big party, the WDFanNight event in Las Vegas during CES2014.
At the time, I didn’t realize just how special the memory of creating this painting would become for me.
I was on an extended stay at my parents’ home in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. My father was very sick, and Maria and I were helping my mom take care of him. We brought our work with us across country, and I transformed my parents’ garage into my working studio and went to work!
I built five canvas frames, each one 6′ x 2′, designed that way so the mural would be easy to transport.
This was painted with a variety of mediums; first the background, using Mtn94 Spray Paint. Then acrylic paints, applied with brushes, to get greater texture. Then I used airbrush and Uni Posca Paint pens for the finer details.
WD wanted a surf painting in my traditional style, with symbolism that was relevant to their products, which is hard drives. Hard drives hold things that you want to keep forever. When I think of things that last forever, I think of ancient times and things that were made in stone. In a way, hard drives hold information that is saved and passed down. All of my art is saved on hard drives; it’s like my safety deposit box. The art will be passed down to my son, and his kids as well. So in this painting, the character is carving a WD in stone.
One of the best photographers in the area, Scott Smallin, came by every day during the painting of this mural to capture the progress on video and pictures. Scott became a good friend and someone to lean on, as the days went on and my father got sicker.
I always wanted my father to be proud of my work. It felt good being back at home, after all these years, and having him watch me do what I do for a living. This painting was the last one my father got to see me create.
Here’s the video of me painting the mural. Photo and video credit to Scott Smallin, video editing by Don Perry, music by Brian ILL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GmgbsE_3P10&feature=share&list=UU5G4tVJHYkrSpTsA2tR-qeg