“Tiempos Tristes” by Craig Corujo, 2019
By Starr Fuentes
Craig Corujo is a 22-year-old digital and traditional artist hailing from Medford, New York. He is a visual arts major at Suffolk County Community College in Selden with plans to transfer to FIT, Pratt, or NYU to study illustration and graphic design. Corujo’s dream job is to become an art director and he enjoys working with colors just as vibrant as his personality. “I am extroverted, highly inquisitive, and have been told that I have an animated personality. As for my work, I would consider myself a pop art artist at the moment,” he said.
Various artists influence Corujo, but the ones who appeal to him the most are Roy Lichtenstein, Yoshitaka Amano, and Rafael Grassetti. “I like to create pop art mainly, or just art that has a lot of vibrancy and flamboyance to its period. Roy Lichtenstein has plenty of work that contains just that. Check out his piece, “Whaam!” Yoshitaka Amano also has incredible vibrant colors in his work, and I think that’s why I look up to these guys because they have a powerful love for eye candy-like styles in their art. Yoshitaka Amano did a cover for Vogue Italia. Look it up and tell me the colors in that aren’t ravishingly beautiful?” he challenges.
Corujo is always inspired by the world around him. When he is not creating, he is educating himself in art history, explaining, “whenever I have free time, I am educating myself on more artists from the past and present.”
(Courtesy: Craig Corujo)
Art is essential to Corujo. It allows him to showcase the creative power that has been instilled in him since birth. He believes that art should hold some importance to everyone:
“Art to me is like wings to a bird, fins to a fish, or legs to a cheetah. It’s a crucial part of me; it gets me moving, and without it, it would be hard to exist. Art should be important to others because art is what gives this world color. It gives our world personality. It gives our world taste. It gives our world feeling.”
Corujo’s favorite art to create is a piece that either overwhelms people with emotion or one that is satisfyingly gorgeous. “I want people to experience gorgeous color patterns, tremendous details, foxy line work, and keep them staring at a piece for a while. The type of art that puts you in a daze with amazement. The type of art where you can’t grasp everything with one viewing. Now that’s art.”
In the future, Corujo dreams of becoming an art director in the entertainment industry, whether it be designing for videogames, movies, or television. He also seeks to have his artwork displayed at the MoMA or The Metropolitan Museum of Art. And perhaps one day, his name will be a part of art history as he makes his mark up there with the Salvador Dali’s and Roy Lichtenstein’s of the world. “I have very big dreams and no one has to believe me. I’ll let my creative power do the work.”
Corujo’s advice for budding artists is to have patience, persistence, and ambition. He believes that these three words will get anybody to where they want to be:
“Me!” by Craig Corujo, 2019
“Patience because success doesn’t happen overnight. Persistence because sometimes the first, second, or third try won’t work. Lastly, ambition because it is the fuel that drives if you will keep going. It’s your foundational power. Some additional advice would be to educate yourself on anatomy, art history, and all the movements from artists of the past. Find artists or styles that speak greatly to you, and create almost every day. Consistency is the key to becoming an amazing artist, and the key to anything in life if you want to be legendary.”
Follow Craig Corujo’s art account on Instagram @craig_the_creator.
Starr Fuentes is a Mass Comm Senior at Five Towns College.