Art as a means of illustrating life

Courtesy of Studio &

Clint Reid will display larger versions of his pen and watercolor illustrations like “e-anchor” for his solo show, “Perspective,” tonight at Studio &.

By Ted Holteen Herald staff writer

There’s another newspaper in town, and we here at The Durango Herald are OK with that.

It’s in that paper – the Durango Telegraph that Clint Reid’s “Chech it Out” comic appears weekly. That cartoon is only a small part of what Reid does, personally and professionally.

“I was eavesdropping and heard them talking about adding another comic. I had no clue what I was going to do but I raised my hand,” Reid said of his “audition” for Telegraph editors.

He works as a graphic designer at J3 Media and shares office space with the Telegraph offices in the Smiley Building. There’s something to be said for location.

Reid will host his second solo show tonight as a working member of the Main Avenue arts collective Studio &. He’s not a painter in the traditional sense, opting for small pen and watercolor illustrations in his private artwork. But for tonight, he’s going big.

“I decided to get some big canvases and take what I do on a tiny scale with little brushes and pens and blow it up – keep the same style and see if turned out OK. So far, it’s going alright,” Reid said.

Unlike his day job, where Reid must cater to the tastes of his clients regardless of his own opinions about the work, working at & allows him to express himself without anyone looking over his shoulder. And not everything is what it seems; in fact, nothing is. For example, a viewer can see his drawing of an anchor and say, “nice anchor.” But there’s more to it than that.

“Most of what I draw is metaphorical, a symbol for something’s that’s happened or is happening,” Reid said. “It’s art therapy for myself that sometimes other people like. Everything means something to me, good or bad. The anchor could be a person, a thought, a motivation, but it probably means anything or everything else but an anchor.”

Reid said he spends about equal time on his professional and personal art but hopes that eventually the latter will be possible without needing the former. His solo show tonight could be an indicator of which direction his career goes from here.

“My job is serving other people, which is great and has its own challenges and rewards,” Reid said. “Illustration is to get everything out of my head and onto paper so I can make more sense of it in my life.”

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