Made in St. Louis: Pencil illustration capture the heart of St. Louis - St. Louis Post-Dispatch

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He captures the moments that fire his imagination in meticulous pencil drawings, dynamic in composition and flawlessly rendered.
For the love of the games • Today, his fine pencil drawings re-create moments from all the St.
Home • Overland What he makes • Bodus is a skilled graphic designer and illustrator who makes fine detail pencil drawings of historical buildings, landmarks and iconic sports of St.
How much • Bodus sells limited editions of signed and numbered prints from his fine art pencil drawings as well as open editions of some prints.
His booth at art shows must be a sport fan’s happy place for art that’s memorable and meaningful.

Made in St. Louis: Pencil illustration capture the heart of St. Louis - St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Artist Joseph Bodus finds inspiration close to home in St. Louis’ buildings, history, sports teams, landmarks and culture. He captures the moments that fire his imagination in meticulous pencil drawings, dynamic in composition and flawlessly rendered. “I’ve been doing art forever — since I was young boy. I always really enjoyed art, so in the fall of 1999, I started studying art at Florissant Valley Community College,” Bodus says. “I got my associate’s degree in graphic design, and then in the fall of 2003 I transferred to the Kansas City Art Institute, where I earned a bachelor’s degree in illustration.” Bodus worked at a variety of jobs after college in graphics for large agencies and small independents, and even worked in graphics for a newspaper. During the recession in 2008/09 he lost his full-time job. “After ‘the big layoff’ it took me 16 months to find another job. I began doing artwork and selling at art and craft fairs around that time to bring in some money.” In 2010 he found work as a web and graphic designer for a large organization and stayed there for five and a half years. He continued to sell art on the art fair circuit, but fate intervened. “I got laid off again on Sept. 22, 2016, which is my birthday. I got a great birthday gift. I took a leap of faith and stepped out to take my art business to the next level.” Get the ball rolling • Bodus has loved sports, baseball in particular, since he was a child. “I grew up in a neighborhood with all my friends playing sports. My best friend happens to be a sports fanatic. We were always playing something — a football game, soccer in the yard, home run derby, hockey in the street, and basketball after school nearly every day in high school,” he says. Although Bodus played organized baseball in grade school, swimming was his sport of choice in middle school and later at Pattonville High School. For the love of the games • Today, his fine pencil drawings re-create moments from all the St. Louis sports teams. They feature both the history and stories of prominent players, stadiums and venues. His booth at art shows must be a sport fan’s happy place for art that’s memorable and meaningful. “When I’m at shows people will say ‘Oh I remember this moment in the game’ or ‘I was in the stands that day’ when they look at my sports art,” he says. “I know with Yadier Molina leaving and Adam Wainwright retiring, a lot of people will remember this season. I have a drawing of the two of them together,” he says. Connecting with his fan base • Bodus goes well beyond sports in his love for St. Louis. He has a strong connection to its landmarks, historic buildings and dynamic cultural life. “A lot of customers that come to my shows like to tell me their stories about the places I’ve drawn that they’ve visited,” he says. “People who were around before 1959 remember when the Arena had towers.” “I do a lot of art fairs throughout the year, an average of 16 to 20 in a normal year,” Bodus says. “I post the dates and locations for fairs on my Facebook page in my feed prior to the show.” He’s captured the palpable energy of the Fox Theatre in his dynamic view of its famous marquee. His rendering of the Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis in fine detail with its rose window and towering spires retains faint perspective lines along the rooftops, as did drawings of the Old Masters. Hitting his stride • Bodus is currently gearing for a round of fall art shows in the metropolitan area. “It feels like I’m working almost like 24 hours a day, but it is at my own pace. I can take a break whenever I want,” he says. Still, he hasn’t looked back in six and a half years after leaving the corporate world. “I believe in my heart it was the right decision. I love what I do and look forward to seeing where my art can take me,’ he wrote on his Etsy page where the fully stocked store shows his illustrations to good advantage. JB Design & Illustration Artist • Joseph Bodus Age • 41 Family • Joseph and his wife, Tara, have two daughters, Liliana, 11, and Isabella, 7. Home • Overland What he makes • Bodus is a skilled graphic designer and illustrator who makes fine detail pencil drawings of historical buildings, landmarks and iconic sports of St. Louis and surrounding cities. He draws using a technique that gives a vintage look to his art. He says his art “creates a moment or memory in time for people.” Where to buy • Bodus sells his work online at his Etsy site, etsy.com/shop/JBDesignIllustration. Artisans in the Loop in University City carries his artwork locally. He also sells at art shows throughout the year, which he regularly posts on his Facebook page. He will be showing at the Midwest Salute to the Masters in Fairview Heights, at the Greentree Festival in Kirkwood and at the Edwardsville Art Fair. Interested parties may contact him at jbodus@sbcglobal.net. How much • Bodus sells limited editions of signed and numbered prints from his fine art pencil drawings as well as open editions of some prints. He offers prints matted and framed as well as unmatted prints ranging from $20 to $300. He also sells magnets and greeting cards in the $5 to $6 range. Coasters featuring one image, sold in sets of four including a tray, are $50 per set. Original drawings are also available, priced from $2,500 to $4,000 or more.
The Original Article can be found on St. Louis Post-Dispatch

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