Thomas Gieseke a Kansas City native brings together his imagined world with nuances of the native Kansas City naturescapes to create intricate illustrations. By weaving the compositions of the Surrealist Masters Gieseke idolizes, like Salvador Dalí, with elements of Kansas City nature he explored as a child, Gieseke creates medium-sized acrylic paitings. These fantastical works explode across the canvas to unlock Gieseke’s fantasy.
Gieseke brings twenty-five years of design experience to his illustrations. His long career has resulted in a many collaborations with acclaimed artists. His achievements include cocreating the design for the happy meal box, a feature in the American Showcase of Illustration, and a successful westcoast show in February of 2014 with the Copro Gallery.
“I will sometimes go to bed and get these weird images in my head. Rather than ignore them and go to sleep, I try to hang on to them, to ‘look’ at them, to be awake and dream at the same time.
Once I get the vision planted in my conscious mind, I stumble out of bed and go straight to the studio to scribble it out. Just a scribble, mind you. Shorthand.
The scribbles then go into a folder called the ‘Idea Pit’. Sometimes, I will fish the scribbled drawing out of the ‘Pit’ the next day. Sometimes, it might take up to a year before I do anything with them. And some of them will lie in the folder forever, never seeing the light of day.
Once I decide I like an image well enough, I will start the long, grueling path to get it to finish- refined drawing after refined drawing. The final drawing gets transferred to canvas and the painting begins.” – Thomas Gieseke