100 Creatives

100 Creatives: Blue 130, Pin-Up Explosion Art

What She Does: Blue 130 is a lot like another local artist, Julie Zarate. Her paintings and mixed media pieces focus on garishly colored female forms that dance between representational art and good pop explosions. She's been drawing since she first learned how to pick up a pencil, and used art as an outlet when she moved to Houston from the East Coast with her family. The road to art has meandered a lot for Blue. She started as a musician, then studied to be a tattoo artist while moving around. Luckily, she returned to Houston three years ago and finally laid down solid roots in the art scene.

For want of a better term her work is pin-up, designed to catch the eye with flowing physical forms and commercial hues that are meant to entice. Her figures tend to beckon the viewer closer, and she often hangs them in front of minute patterns that are so subtle that you don't even realize that you're being hypnotized by the backgrounds. This is even more effective in her mixed media work because it gives an unsettling but barely noticed level of layers that feel like mild vertigo. It's very well crafted stuff that tastes like candy and kicks like whiskey.

Her mix of hot girls, tattoos and loud colors can usually be seen at the East End Studio Gallery among others, and she's shown at House of Blues, Artopia, Summer Street , Hardy & Nance, and most recently Pushing the Limits.

Why She Likes It: "What I love the most about what I do is the feeling that when nothing else makes sense, my art does. I can be having the worst day, but I can retreat into my work and forget everything. I also love that it seems to make people happy."

What Inspires Her: "I am heavily influenced by the advice and inspiration given to me by Lizbeth Ortiz over the past year, and many local artists such as David Pilgrim, Julie Zarate, and Browncoat. I am influenced from my illustrative/graffiti background and my love affair with comics, pin up art, horror movies, story books, music (mainly metal), tattoos, make-up, and high heels!"

If Not This, Then What: Before she really started to focus on her art, Blue was a solo rapper. However, she was much more into metal, yet never had any success putting together a band in the genre. Nonetheless, if painting were off the table music would be the first thing she would head towards.

If Not Here, Then Where: "I have lived many places. I love the city, but at this point in my life I'd probably move to an island somewhere or the mountains, someplace more laid back and visually beautiful. I am sure I'd just end up back here. I always do!"

What's Next: "I am focusing right now on the next show I am curating at East End Studio Gallery, Blue 130's Bombshell & Brawlers: Round 2 on September 6th! It's going to be a HUGE undertaking that will include performances, fashion, and of course some of the finest Pinup/Tattoo inspired art and artists in Houston! I want to continue to curate events at East End, show my work nationally, and eventually venture into more merchandising. I am ready for anything Houston!"

More Creatives for 2013 (In order of most recently published; click here for the full page).

Nina Godiwalla, author and TED speaker David Wilhem, light painter Tom Abrahams, author and newscaster Browncoat, pin-up pop artist Kris Becker, Nu-Classical composer and pianist Vincent Fink, science fashion Stephanie Saint Sanchez, Senorita Cinema founder Ned Gayle, thrift store painting defacer Sameera Faridi, fashion designer Greg Ruhe, The Human Puppet Sophia L. Torres, founder and co-artistic director of Psophonia Dance Company Maggie Lasher, dance professor and artistic director Jordan Jaffe, founder of Black Lab Theatre Outspoken Bean, performance poet Barry Moore, architect Josh Montoute, mobile gaming specialist Ty Doran, young actor Gwen Zepeda, Houston's first Poet Laureate Joseph Walsh, principal dancer at Houston Ballet Justin Garcia, artist Buck Ross, dilettante and director of Moores Opera Center Patrick Renner, sculptor of the abstract and the esoteric Tomas Glass, abstract artist and True Blood musician Ashley Stoker, painter, photographer and Tumblr muse Amy Llanes, artistic airector of Rednerrus Feil Dance Company Bevin Bering Dubrowski, executive director at the Houston Center for Photography Lydia Hance, founder and director of Frame Dance Productions Piyali Sen Dasgupta, mixed media artist and nature lover Dean James, New York Times bestselling mystery novelist Nicola Parente, abstract painter and photographer Cheryl Schulke, handmade leather pursemaker Anthony Rathbun, Alternative Lifestyle Photographer David Salinas, computer-less analog photographer Danielle Burns, art curator Alicia DiRago, Whimseybox founder Katia Zavistovski, contemporary art curator Ashley Horn, choreographer, filmmaker Amanda Stevens, scary book author Peter Lucas, film and video curator, music lover and self-described culture-slinger Ana María Otamendi, collaborative pianist and vocal coach Billy D. Washington, comedian Michele Brangwen, choreographer and dancer Kristin Warren, actress and choreographer Kelly Sears, animator and film maker Colton Berry, Bayou City Theatrics' artistic director jhon r. stronks,dance-maker Joe Grisaffi, actor, director, writer, cinematographer Jordan "Monster Mac" McMahon, artist, designer

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Jef Rouner (not cis, he/him) is a contributing writer who covers politics, pop culture, social justice, video games, and online behavior. He is often a professional annoyance to the ignorant and hurtful.
Contact: Jef Rouner