Photograph by Jeff Cancelosi
Interviewed by Valerie Fair
Hello Darin, How are you today?
Darin Darby: Excellent. How are you?
I'm fine Darin. Thank you for asking! There are some questions that I will ask because your work has sparked many a conversation. Can you define your art and how did you come to this type of work?
Darin Darby: I have been an artist for as long as I can remember. I’ve always had an appreciation for the different artistic styles. However, I wanted to create art in a way that no one had seen before. I asked God for something new and in 2014 I started collaging using a unique process that I call Laypuzzim® (layered puzzled image). Laypuzzim® art is created by cutting textured card stock paper, mat board, or wood. Each individual color or shape of the art piece is cut out by hand, layered, and puzzled together to create the image using negative space.
Were you the inventor of this style?
Darin Darby: Yes
Is there a preference for the number of layers?
Darin Darby: No.
How many layers provide the best expression?
Darin Darby: Sometimes less is more. It really depends on the art piece.
Does it reference any other type of art work?
Darin Darby:Yes, realism and abstract.
Do you generally do realistic work?
Darin Darby: Yes, and sometimes an abstracted form of realism.
How long does the average work require?
Darin Darby: 3 days
How do you pick your subject matter?
Darin Darby: Most of my artwork is inspired by biblical themes,
thought provoking messages, little known African American historical figures,
and events that took place during my childhood in Detroit.
What would you say is your method of work?
Darin Darby: It can be considered a form of collage.
Do you create in many forms, i.e. sculpture?
Darin Darby: Yes, I create mini wood sculptures in the Laypuzzim® process.
Is the work difficult compared to painting?
Darin Darby: Yes, because it requires engineering to determine how to
utilize the negative space and the order of layering.
"The Legaacy of John Lewis" by Darin Darby
Do you work consistently at your art or is it supported by a day job?
Darin Darby: Art is my full time job.
Where can your work be viewed and/or purchased? How can you be reached if someone wants to make a purchase?
Darin Darby: My art can be viewed at my home studio located in Romulus, MI or on my Instagram page https://www.instagram.com/ddarbyart/ My art can be purchased by contacting me. I deliver locally and ship both domestic and internationally. I also have a limited selection of pieces available at https://www.saatchiart.com/ddarbyart.
I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 313-443-4402.
Do you mentor or teach others?
Darin Darby: Yes
If so where/how?
Darin Darby: At the Detroit Fine Arts Breakfast Club we often share ideas, best practices, critique artwork, offer advice, and share opportunities. I also teach and mentor adults and children who aspire to improve their craft.
Who is your favorite artist living or not?
Darin Darby: Charles White is one of my favorite artist. I really like his approach to African American social realism. He created art in a non-traditional form. White’s style really stands apart from the other artists during his period both by his unique style and also the messages behind his artwork. Charles White believed that art had a role to play in changing the world and I align myself with this same belief.
Is there any advice you would like to leave the readers with concerning your art? Please express in detail.
Darin Darby: I chose not to be confounded by traditional methods. Laypuzzim® art is unique, innovative and sparks conversations. It has been on display in various galleries, art exhibitions, and featured on the local news. We all have a gift. I believe that whatever your gift or talent is, there is a place for it. I look forward to sharing my gift with the world, and you should too. There is room for all voices of creativity. Never believe that your voice can’t or should not be heard. I encourage you to think outside the box, work hard, stay focused, don’t give up and have faith.
All rights to all images belong to the artists and cannot be used in any form without the written permission of the artists.