CHICAGO, Dec. 18, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The prestigious American Academy of Art is thrilled to announce that former student Jason Seiler has illustrated the cover for TIME Magazine's 2013 "Person of the Year" – Pope Francis.
The print magazine hit shelves on Friday, December 13. TIME did a story on Jason and his work creating this outstanding illustration of the first non-European pope in 1,200 years: http://poy.time.com/2013/12/11/behind-person-of-the-year-cover-jason-seiler/.
"This magazine cover illustration of Pope Francis for TIME was as challenging an assignment as it was a huge honor," explained Seiler.
Seiler, who finished his studies at the Academy in 2006, spent 70 hours creating the image of Pope Francis on a 21-inch LDC display. He utilized many of the same techniques he employs when painting with oils or acrylics. Interestingly, Jason also created the illustration for TIME Magazine's second-place runner-up for its 2013 "Person of the Year" – Edward Snowden.
Seiler's illustrations and paintings have also been featured as covers and interior pieces for Rolling Stone, Billboard, The Utne Reader, The New Yorker, Der Spiegel, Business Week, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Weekly Standard, MAD Magazine, GOLF Digest, AD WEEK, and many other publications. Seiler has also worked for Disney, New Line Cinema, Universal Pictures, Aardman Animation and Sony Image – among others.
Seiler's watercolor instructor at the Academy in 2005, Mat Barber Kennedy, had this to share about teaching Jason: "His talent and pride in his work were instantly apparent as were his determination and dedication to improve. These elements of his character have helped him to build such a successful career. I enjoyed teaching Jason and am immensely proud both of his artistic achievements and of the way that he has handled himself as a man of integrity."
A Digital Painter for 10 Years
Based on Jason's need to meet tight deadlines from magazine clients, he taught himself how to paint digitally in 2004. Jason purchased a small, cheap tablet to "test out" digital art. He created and was paid for a painting of Arnold Schwarzenegger that first week and has been painting digitally ever since. His tool of choice: a Wacom Cintiq.
"I have created my own brushes and technique to painting digitally that make the experience and my work product almost the same as if I were working traditionally," Seiler explained. "I paint digitally now for every assignment that I get for publication – movies, books, posters, you name it. I only do traditional work for myself for some upcoming shows and for private commissions."
Artist Painting Celebrity becomes a Celebrity
The TIME cover of Pope Francis has yielded a lot of media interest in Jason, including interviews in Chicago with ABC-7, FOX News (twice), and WTTW-Channel 11, and with TIME Magazine, Vanity Fair and The Huffington Post.
Making Art is Still Hard
Jason explains that every piece he creates has its challenges. "There is always a point in almost every piece I do that I feel like I am struggling or failing. It's problem solving. You simply have to do what you can to push through it. If there weren't challenges, it would become boring, and so would my work. I enjoy the struggle, it makes me better."
Jason lives in Chicago with his family.
About the American Academy of Art:
The American Academy of Art (www.aaart.edu) has trained and educated some of the nation's most prominent and prolific fine artists and illustrators since its founding in 1923. Alumni include: industry-leading painted comic book artist Alex Ross (2012 Distinguished Alumnus winner); Children's book illustrator Loren Long who also illustrated President Obama's 2010 book, "Of Thee I Sing" (2011 Distinguished Alumnus winner"); movie poster illustrator and cowboy artist Howard Terpning (2010 Distinguished Alumnus winner); Haddon Sundblom, who created the American version of Santa Claus for Coca Cola; and numerous other artists.
The American Academy of Art (www.aart.edu) offers four-year, accredited Bachelor of Fine Arts degree programs in the following disciplines: Illustration, Digital Illustration, Graphic Design, Multimedia/Web Design, 3-D Modeling and Animation, Life Drawing, Oil Painting, Watercolor and Photography. It emphasizes the classical tradition, reinforced by real-world projects taught by distinguished instructors – all of whom are working artists as well as full-time teachers.
The Academy not only guides and trains students to be exemplary artists, it also connects students to valuable resources to help with their transition to real-world careers upon graduation. The American Academy of Art is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association. The Academy is also accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
SOURCE American Academy of Art