For this week’s artist conversation I had the pleasure of viewing Thomas Cressman’s art inside of the Gatov-East gallery, as well as being able to interview him. Thomas is in his 5th year at CSULB and has lived in Southern California for all of his life. After graduation, Thomas plans on creating more of his art and selling it. For Thomas, it all started in high school after taking art class and falling in love with the subject. Currently, Thomas lives in Seal Beach and commutes a short distance to CSULB.
Thomas obtains his motivation from the ocean and the animals that live in it. In specific, the octopus is his favorite animal and one that he finds to be incredibly interesting. Thomas likes to relate his pieces to the ocean, stating that there is so much to be seen in the ocean and practically a brand new world. His main goal when creating art is to give off a feeling of being at the ocean. Out of this gallery, his favorite work of art is the blue clam which is made out of metal. Thomas was feeling skeptical about using the color blue on any of his pieces, but after the success of the clam, he is very excited to incorporate more of the color that relates so much to the ocean.
The material that Thomas mainly works with is metal. In specific, Thomas thrives on using silver, steel and copper. Thomas discussed the specific process by which he creates his pieces, and it involves a couple simple, yet complex steps. Thomas starts out with a fat sheet of metal and proceeds to mold whatever he wants to make with a sheet of paper. Afterward, Thomas molds the metal sheet so that it resembles the sheet of paper. After the metal sheet is molded to his liking, Thomas adds any details and modifications that he pleases.
Overall, the work that Thomas does is very modern in my opinion, and very nice. I could definitely see myself purchasing some of his work and placing it into my house. Being a person that loves the beach and lives in Newport Beach, the work that Thomas does is probably some of my favorite thus far. Not only is his work something that I would definitely place in my home, but it is art that I believe would enhance the appearance of any home interior. I definitely recommend that you check out more of Thomas Cressman’s work on his Instagram page: @thom_cress6
Thomas is pictured below in the middle: