My objective as an artist is quite simple: to find beauty and joy in the manipulation of forms, colours and textures in a playful, musical dance that celebrates our ordinary world. My attitude toward the visual arts is that it is the visual equivalent of music. When I am composing, I am usually listening to Jazz and I work the same way as Jazz musicians, improvising as I go along without any predetermined goal in mind. As a result, I am always surprised as the images emerge and I feel more like a spectator taking snapshots along the way rather than the creator. This is the joy in my work, meditating on the evanescent character of the forms and colours as they emerge on my screen. My process is to take images from my digital camera and work on them with Adobe Photoshop and Jasc Paintshop Pro, manipulating them to the point where they are no longer recognizable. Then the fun begins. I use a cutout technique to select interesting parts of the manipulated image, drawing the cutout with the select tool, this selection is then pasted onto a background image and then moved around into the position that is the optimal place on the painting for it.
I am very interested in the challenge of creating movement in a 2D static medium. This movement is the dance of the elements and I aim for a busy dynamic, which fills my heart with joy whenever it works. Playful happiness is the goal that I am always working toward.
Mike Butler attended the Ontario College of Art for 4 years, graduating in 1980 as an Associate of the Ontario College of Art (AOCA) in Fine Arts. For several years he worked in watercolours and ink developing an expressionistic style. The artist had a number of shows in galleries such as the Eclectic Gallery, a show in the CN Tower and a few others.
In the early to mid eighties Mike became interested in computer technology as a medium for fine art. In 1991 he created and maintained the Virtual Palette -- an electronic bulletin board system for artists that predated the Web. From 1995 onwards his art work has been shown and published exclusively on the web and can be viewed at www.mikyo.com and www.hotlux.com. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org