Over the past 14 years, French-Canadian artist Steven Spazuk has perfected a technique called fumage that allows him to use the flame of a candle or the flame of a torch as a pencil to create his paintings with trails of soot. Using various tools, Steven then intuitively sculpts the plumes of soot left behind in response to the shapes that appear on the canvas. Each piece is a spontaneous creative process which evolves into a breathtaking monochromatic image. For more information about the artist, check out the interview below and visit his website www.spazuk.com.
How would you describe yourselve in one sentence?
I am a positive person with a strong propensity towards happiness.
Whom do you look up to?
I am a big fan of Chuck Close… Younger Dali was my favorte artist… Now there are so many great artists that inspire me.
Are there any personalities that have contributed to your successful career path?
Nobody in particular, but the support of my love ones have always been great. To me that is the most important support you need in order to be successful in the pursuit of happiness.
Who or what has been the biggest influence on your way of thinking?
Again, nobody in particular, I would say LIFE in general, the sum of life experiences, the sum of human encounters, the sum of books read, of work done…in a recent pass I could say that Danielle, my love, my partner has been a great source of influence and a great boost of positive energy…
What made you want to become an artist?
At a young age I was extra shy and I would always be drawing. People would come to me interested in my work and associating me to art, considering me as an artist. It sort of programmed me from the start and I always thought of myself as an artist. It was always clear to me that my life would be in art.
What was your favourite project and why?
Our project, REVERENCE, ….Because it is the kind of project you think of, without actually taking the time to really work on it, because it is too time consuming…But we did it ! And it turned out great. Check it out here.
What was the biggest challenge you’ve faced during your career as an artist?
My will to help and love others before myself. I say that in humility and without regrets, that is the way I am. I see myself as a person with many hats, and when I am wearing my father hat I put my artsit hat on the side. Same for my husband hat… Now with my children getting older and with the help of Danielle, my partner, I feel that my main hat is the artist hat.
Do you have a favourite quote that describes what you truly believe in?
LOVE is all we need. And respect for the living.
How do you define creativity?
Creativity comes in different manners and shapes, but to me pure creativity comes from unfiltered freedom.
If you had one advice for someone seeking to live a creative life, what would you tell him?
Never stop doing what you believe in, never do something not related to your goals…perservere and ALWAYS stay true to your self ’cause authenticity never lies.
What do you know now that you wish you knew at 21?
I wish I had persued a masters in art and started to be represented in galleries at a younger age.
Is there anything for which you would be ready to give up your passion for art?
I would give everything up for my kids and for Danielle…But they would not let me…
All images © Steven Spazuk