At first glance, Pruch’s digital paintings draw your attention for its beauty and detailed animation. As you look deeper, you start to see the complexity and hidden meaning within each piece, and it stirs something inside you. Check out his story below.
Say hello to Pruch:
Where are you from? Where have you been?
I was born in Bangkok and spent some of my time growing up in Kanchanaburi, a western province of Thailand. I have also been to almost every part of it, except the beautiful north for some strange reason. It is definitely on my list, among many other places in the world I’d love to visit someday.
How do you find your inspiration?
Most of the time, it will come to me by itself. I have to sketch it down quickly or it will dart away. My inspiration usually comes from events that stick to my memory. And I will try to translate them into a picture through my own perspective. There’s always a reason why those history happened. We just didn’t think about it at the time.
Do you get inspiration blocks? If so, how do you overcome them?
I don’t have any trouble when it’s about the concept of my art. The blocked part starts when my painting begins. It’s always a struggle to match your work with the picture in your head. I will spend a lot of time messing around with it until it’s starting to look good. Sometimes, I can’t even get a clear picture of what the final result will be. But in the end, I will come up with something. And I will have to tell myself to be satisfied with it. You can always try another wild idea of yours in the next work, anyway.
A lot of your work depicts a melancholy mood with teardrops – is this a reflection of your emotional state or another message?
It’s common to see someone cry when their emotion spikes too high. Both happy and sad. I just happened to use them because that’s what I’m good at. Not saying that my life story is worse than anybody else’s or anything. It’s just that I can communicate my art better with these kind of emotions. The teardrops are a part of the expression in my work. Not necessary in every piece. But every so often, when I depict an image of children with a broken emotion from the world they see, the tears need to be there. They don’t have to be a real tear. Sometimes, it can be a symbol hinting that the character is crying inside, and trying to hide their feeling. So it really depends on the concept of each work.
What is your background?
The best decision my family made was sending me to a bilingual school since I was young. You will be amazed how many Thai kids back in the ‘90s can’t speak English at all. I was one of the luckier kids who can at least speak broken Tinglish, which opened many opportunities later in my life’s career. There was a lot of stuff that happened in the university years that changed me forever, and it has a huge effect to my work. It started to become more surreal shortly after I obtained a BA in Visual Design. My degree didn’t help me with anything I wanted to do with my art. The only thing I got from it was how to paint in Photoshop, which I studied on my own. The rest, I had to find them myself while I was moving from one job to another. I found my first motivation to be a full-time artist from my last job at a game studio. When you have both foreign and local employees in your company, you see the way they look at each other from both perspectives. There was a lot of hidden racism and negativity. Most of it was from the locals, and I was the local. It was very uncomfortable since I had friends on both sides. Working in this kind of environment long enough will make you want to put your mind somewhere else, so I gradually turned my head to my painting and continue doing so now.
What mediums do you work with most frequently?
I discovered digital painting around my university time and have stuck to it since. But I’d really love to explore more about acrylic and oil painting in the future!
Out of your works, which three are you most proud of?
My artistic side is never satisfied with what I have, so I’m kind of reluctant to say what I’m proud of the most. But I can show you those I happened to like a little bit more than the rest. One thing that intrigues me is our decision in the time of conflict. Some of us will instinctively hide troubles away – put our chin up and try to find comfort from a friend first. Never ask for anything back, not even show the unlicked wound. This kind of selfless act really fascinate me. I made this painting around this concept within my own perspective. I hope it reminds the viewers the time when they did the same brave thing.
We all have our moments when we walk into a mirror naked. We stare, and it reflects back all the shame and humiliation we have been through. In this painting, you can see a sticky liquid dripping on the boy’s face. It is my metaphor of regret – an emotion that never seems to go away. The falling flowers are another symbol of the guilty innocent claim. As there was always a reason to what we did, whether or not it worked out, we still have to continue living as we are, bearing these thoughts in mind.
This one is like my own special tradition. I will make at least one picture of this rabbit girl every year. And it’s been going on since my first year in university. I like to think of her as a representation of someone who grew up suppressed by what society expected them to be. The wounds you see are there as a substitute meaning for the emotional scars that grow along with age. As for the rabbit girl, I depict her looking forward into non-existent horizon beyond raining clouds. I want her expression to show the subconscious feeling about how we wait for our happiness to come. But within my own point of view.
What themes do you explore in your work?
I seek to explore the deep emotional complexity in society. My work is about children who grow up being suppressed, and how they react to the world around them. Actually, this could be applicable to anyone. But I choose to use children in my work because we always find the root of the problem starts at a younger age. And the way they respond to that matter is much more honest than the older one. I grew up with anime and adult manga, which often portray a young child or teenager as a protagonist. They are a perfect art style to represent these kind of themes, in my opinion.
Professionally, where do you hope to see yourself in five years?
Considering from where I started, I think it’s a miracle I got this far. But I hope I can make a living as a full-time artist someday.
What is your most life-changing event?
When I met my girlfriend when we were at the university. The majority of my inspiration is born from the history we made until now.
What’s something no one knows about you that you’d like to share?
I ate gunpowder once. It tasted like…a powdered gun?
What’s something you’ve always wanted to do but haven’t?
My plan to travel to Japan got foiled somehow, every time. I really need to get there, real soon!
For anyone that wants to get in touch with Pruch, here’s some contact information:
Pruch, thank you for sharing your story with us! 🙂
If any artists out there want to collaborate with FStop, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. Also, remember to download the FStop app for iPhone here!