I met Luis Requena at the Culture of Arts Festival in Downtown Denison, Texas. It was an event celebrating artists, creatives, and performers of all kinds. Luis was among the talent set up in Heritage Park. He was not only displaying his work but demonstrating his artistic process by making original pieces throughout the day.
“I was honored to be invited to show at the Denison Culture of Arts Festival.”
Luis lives in north Dallas with his 10 year old son, who is his source of motivation and everyday passion in life. His son's interest in art as well is a driving force in Luis’ creative endeavors.
Growing up in San Luis Potosi, Mexico, he was mesmerized by various street artists. He recalls miniature landscapes painted on plates and spoons, being amazed at the detail of the pieces that were created with fingers, not brushes. Ever since he can remember, Luis has been drawing, painting, and doodling.
Professionally, he started out as a painter, both residential and commercial. That has expanded over the years into diverse projects including tile, sheet rock, hardscaping, and more. Loving a challenge, Luis thrives on figuring out how to deliver the best products as efficiently as possible to his clients.
Like a lot of artists, he feels that art chose him, not the other way around.
“If I’m not painting, I feel as though I’m missing out on an important and creative aspect of my life.”
About five years ago he began to get serious about his painting, starting out as a hobby at first. It was a mode of relaxation and personal fulfillment for him. The more he practiced, the more passionate he became about it.
Spray paint art is what Luis spends most of his time creating and he paints on just about anything - poster board, canvas, clock faces, and lamp shades to name a few. He will even add clock faces to any of his pieces which have been very popular among his customers.
He is now incorporating Japanese manga art into his portfolio, including book cover designs. Dreams of owning a sign and screening shop where he can produce high quality art on a customized basis is on his horizon.
Luis’ medium of choice, spray paint, is a unique and non-traditional means of painting. He is a big fan of and inspired by the techniques of Tony Vegas, amazed by how this simple medium can be used to create such detailed pieces in a short amount of time.
For many years, Luis has been exposed to aerosolgrafia, what this style of spray paint art is called in Mexico. Artist Ruben Sadot Fernandez, popular in Mexico in the 1980s, has been credited as being the creator of this type of art form. Fantasy, sci-fi, and cosmic elements are typically involved with this style, which Luis feels naturally drawn to.
He has shown his work at several artist friendly restaurants in the Dallas area such as La Hacienda Chichen Itza on Richmond Avenue near Lower Greenville. Next month he will be at the Cinco de Mayo Festival in Celina, Texas.
His current work can be viewed on Facebook.
When I asked Luis if he had any advice for fellow creatives, especially youthful artists getting their start, he answered.
“Follow your dreams and stay positive with them. Create every day if possible. And remember, as artist Bob Ross used to say.”
“There are no mistakes, only happy accidents.”
Luis feels that getting ahead in life happens when you are enjoying life to the fullest. He tries to live by a simple quote also inspired by Bob Ross.
“Keep calm and paint happy little trees.”
A special thank you to Ms. Kristyn Cicciareli for working with Mr. Requena and writing his interview responses that I requested.