Rock Impressions

INTERVIEW WITH THE PAINTER ED UNITSKY (artworks for Flower Kings, Tangent, OSC, Moongarden...) (italian version)
by Giancarlo Bolther

Would you like to introduce yourself to our readers, please?
I was born in Belarus and have lived here all my life. I have been interested in music and art since being a small child. My artistic abilities are natural born. I have done many different aspects of artistic creations.
When I was a small boy, I would sketch, draw, paint – much like many young children do. As I grew older, I was commissioned to do murals, using different techniques such as airbrushing, create designs for signs and banners, and I did oil paintings that I have sold over the years, also.
When I was younger, I started a print shop and I had the opportunity to begin using the digital technology related to this and as I began to work with the computer I realized I loved working with the technology to apply my art. And as this evolved, my interest and ability to create many forms of digital artwork.
I love many artists, and there a too many to name. It is better to say, I simply love good art! My manager and I spend hours at a time looking at different artist’s artwork from all over the world and from many different eras. This is my constant source of inspiration.
And music! I very much love music of many different genres! Since being a small boy, I have loved music! I remember when I was a small boy and my parents gave me a small music player. My friends and I played the few available recordings over and over. Many times, singing along with the music player pretending to be a famous music star!
I am also an avid reader. I love good books.

Can you tell me something about the painting techniques used to create your paintings?
Currently, I use a variety of photoshop programs to create my artwork. I also have done oils, acrylics, airbrushing, charcoals, pencils, pastels, watercolors ...
24. When did you realize that you could use your talent for the music world and which was the first album that featured one of your paintings?
Early in 2002 I began to realize this. My first published artwork was for the 2002 Fan Club CD for The Flower Kings and then The Tangent CD artwork followed. It changed my life!

Did the paintings that you make for yourself are different from the ones used for the bands?
I would say that my artwork I create artwork out of the inspirational mood when this comes to me. I don’t always know what idea is going to be. But, when it arrives, I simply go with the idea. This always makes me happy!
And sometimes, I have creation in my files that seems to fit a bands album theme. So when I show them a piece of my artworks, sometimes they agree that this is fitting for their cover and sometimes, we modify it alittle bit to fit the cover of their ablum. All of my artwork ideas come out of inspiration of an idea I have in my head.

You did a lot of paintings for progressive rock artists, what do you think about progressive music?
I love progressive rock music. I believe this is the modern day version of classical music. It is truly timeless.

Which is the most inspiring music for you and what kind of music do like to listen to, which are your favoured bands?
I love Progressive Rock of course! I also listen to classical music, opera, indie, actually many different kinds of music that is excellent. There are only a few genres of music that I don’t like.

When you make a painting for an album, do you usually listen the music first to find some inspiration?
Sometimes, the music becomes the background mood for me and I listen music for inspiration. I always have some cool music playing around me. But, most of the time, an idea simply pops into my head and I start to work on it and it evolves into a creation.

Usually, do you are satisfied with your finished paintings or there is always something that you would have the possibility to change?
No, I am always thinking I could do something to make it a little better. I am very picky and a perfectionist. I am constantaly reworking a piece. But, this is the nature of an artist.

In the music tradition there are some great painters that were used a lot, the first one that comes to my mind is Frank Frazzetta (my fave), Roger Dean, Whitehead (GENESIS), Rodney Matthews and so on... did you were influenced by their works?
These are all amazing artist! And they do give me inspiration. However, perhaps the most influential artist for me is Salvatore Dali.

If you have to choose an album from the past that you would have painted the cover art, which one do you choose and why?
Only one? This is a very difficult question for me. Each one is very special and dear to my heart. Each one reflects a different dimension of my creativity and so it is very difficult to choose.

Usually your paintings are very rich and complex, how do you manage the very small dimension of a cd’s booklet, do you care about it and which are usually the real dimension of your paintings?
The artwork begins much larger. Then it is made smaller to fit the size of the CD/DVD cover and booklets. The larger pieces show much more detail than what you actually are able to see on the small CD/DVD sizes. The original dimensions I start with change for each artwork piece. Sometimes it is very big and sometimes it is small. It just depends.

How long did it takes one of your paintings to be done?
When I am in the creative mood, the artwork just flows out and I create, create, create, create! Sometimes this can be many pieces in a short period of time. And at other times, I simply need to show up and wait until the artwork inspiration comes to me.

Which was the most gratifying artwork you’ve done or the one you are particulary proud of?
To be able to do my artwork for people to enjoy is very gratifying to me. And I am proud and honored when they are happy.

Which was the artists it was most easy to work with and why?
Oh, this is a very difficult question.

Which was the most particular or difficult request that you have been asked for an artwork?
The most difficult requests for me are when a band wants something that isn’t artisitically wants something done that isn’t good artwork or wants a modification that is bad for the artwork piece. This does happen from time to time. It is very difficult to express to them that this is my artwork, my image, my reputation and when their request is less than up to my standards, or to change it, modify it, recolor it, or use the image inappropriately, this is upsetting to me.

When I look at your paintings I feel also a lot of spirituality, do you consider yourself a spiritual person? If yes, can you tell me more about, please?
Yes, my artwork is spiritual. Spirituality is contained with in each piece in some way or another. Even in some cases, the dark side of spirituality.
And yes, I consider myself a spiritual person. I believe very much there is a higher source of Divine. I believe it is in all of us and in every thing that exists.

The nature is always very important also, you paint the beauty of the nature, does this it is the world through your eyes or does it is a dremland world?
Both. I love nature very much. I find a lot of comfort and solice in the woods, by the river, in flowers, trees, the sky, rain ... it adds to my creative imagination in my Surrealistic Dreams!

What do you think about what the men are doing to affect the world?
Well, I think the earth is a beautiful place and that humans are basically good. But, some how we haven’t seemed to figure out how to be humane, live in peace and harmony for all the people. This makes me sad.

Which is the gratest challenge for you?
Ask my manager (laughing)

Can you tell me something about your future projects?
In September 2007, my artwork will be on the cover of the new release for The Flower Kings – “Sum of No Evil”.
I just completed the Logo artwork for the Happy Birthday, Moscow! 860th Anniversary celebration.
I will be doing the Rites of Spring Festival Logo artwork again for the 2008 Festival.
I will be doing artwork for Italy’s wonderful group Moongarden for their upcoming album.
Also, Jade Warrior’s new album NOW.
We have about 15 projects in the works for the very near future.

Feel free to end this interview as you like...
Giancarlo, thank you for giving me the opportunity to share my thoughts with you. I have visited your ezine many times to keep up with the news. I hope someday we have the pleasure to meet.
Very best wishes to you and your family.


Ed's Web Site

Back to the Interviews' List

Back to the Articles' List

| Home | Articoli | Interviste | Recensioni | News | Links | Art | Chi siamo | Rock Not Roll | Live | FTC | Facebook | MySpace | Born Again |