Constantinos Vorrises got his start as an artist several years ago as a student at San Francisco State University. He began by decorating his school binders with his original art, and his passion has only grown since then. He creates unique, abstract art in several mediums, as well as unique t-shirts and masks. Here’s more information about him, as told in his own words:
1. Where are you from originally? Are you from CA?
I was born in San Francisco and then moved to Foster City (about 30 mins away) and now back to San Francisco.
My dad was born in San Francisco. My mom was born in Zakynthos. Both of my parents are 100% Zakythian.
2. I see you went to San Francisco State University… what led you to that school? What did you study?
I chose SFSU because it was local. I was working at an after-school program at the time and wanted to get my MFT (Marriage & Family Therapy) license. They had a good program at SFSU but when I applied, I was still finishing the prerequisites – I had to wait another year to apply. Around that time, I ended up pursuing my real estate license and have been a Realtor for 13 years now.
3. When did you start creating art?
Funny story – I actually started during a class at SFSU. The teacher asked us to read certain pages and then get in groups of 3-4 to talk about it. I didn’t want to so I just started drawing on my binder. About an hour later, there was this crazy design. I was 21 at that time, and I haven’t stopped drawing, painting, and creating since.
4. How did your art career evolve?
I started off by drawing as a hobby. Working at the after-school program, there were some teachers who were artists, and I was always interested in their work. Went from drawing to painting. Small pieces to large pieces. I eventually joined an art group called MESH Collective in San Francisco and had my first real show with them in San Jose. Since then, I’ve been fortunate to sell many pieces through shows, galleries, coffee shops, office spaces, and online – instagram has been amazing for me as an artist. People now reach out to me for commissioned pieces and it’s been surreal at times.
5. Can you share some information about your artistic influences?
It started with Mike Arnold and Tony Nandan early on… They are both bay area artists. A high school friend, Joe Sanchagrin introduced me to MESH collective and these artists really caught my eye: Ozi Magana, Mario Guitron, Paul Tanner, and Jerry Macalino. They were all so different in what they create, but amazing. In terms of “famous” artists, I love Jackson Pollock, Jean-Michel Basquiat to name a few… and so many on instagram. There are some amazing artists on instagram!
6. What is your creative process like?
My process usually starts with me staring at the black canvas for about 5-10 minutes while thinking about colors and style. I don’t try to overthink the process so usually just go for it… nothing is traced or really thought out. I create as I go. I will often change the colors and style plenty of times before I like it… but that’s the fun part. Just because I like it doesn’t mean anyone else will. Whether it’s oil paint pens, acrylic paint, chalk art, etc… the creative process is all the same. Just start, keep creating and see what happens.
7. What are your current projects?
During the Covid-19 pandemic, I’ve been painting more than ever before. Currently, I’m working on an oil paint pen piece, black and silver. It will take me at least 2-3 months because I go over it several times and its drawing with a smaller pen. I am currently working on getting into some online galleries and putting plenty of time into my t-shirts as well. It’s another form of creativity. Cool to see people wear them and send me pics! I am also working on putting some of my artwork on t-shirts and hoodies too.
For more information, please visit his website: https://artbyconstantinos.com.
Follow him on Instagram and FB @art.by.constantinos and @greek_to_me_store
Buy his t-shirts and masks at his online store: https://teespring.com/stores/greek-to-me-store