Thursday, July 7, 2016

Artist Matt Litchliter shares dramatic color in pleasing southern images

Photo courtesy Matt Litchliter
Matt Litchliter belies the image of the starving artist in a dark garret. The young father of two serves as part of a successful internet company as well as painting dynamic award-winning pieces which draw the viewer closer and closer to enjoy the details he has added. His skills as a graphic designer carry over into his art with spectacular results.

Slidell-born Litchliter graduated two short months before Hurricane Katrina struck the Gulf Coast in 2005 and found himself working in demolition, tearing out soaked sheet rock from damaged homes in south Louisiana, rather than working in art as he had planned. From there, he moved into carpet cleaning. The depressed air of the city at the time led him to paint uplifting images when he could and he started with jazz musicians. Later he added his fanciful images of skulls, including some showing the fantasy influence of Day of the Dead art. The result is compelling works of magical feelings.

His image of New Orleans television icon Sid Noel in character as Morgus the Magnificent made the cover of Slidell magazine, as did an image of zydeco musician Rockin’ Doopsie. One of his skulls won a mixed media competition in October 2015. A more recent win was the Chef Soiree poster competition, with a charming alligator chef stirring up the ingredients of the south Louisiana spirit.

He describes himself as an impatient painter, sometimes sketching and beginning to paint the work in a single day. His energy translates into colorful images to capture the imagination.

“I’m never satisfied,” he says, and notes he must battle the urge to keep tweaking the painting. However, his confidence in his work is growing as he sees more acceptance.
Like many artists, he faces the necessity to paint something which will sell in order to support his art, yet to keep it at an affordable level for the public. Toward that end, he is investigating the possibility of prints of his work and collectible ornaments of New Orleans themes. In the works is an ETSY store.

Reluctant to limit himself to a single style, he creates in many genres, as witnessed by the variety of his works. He laughs as he expresses a desire to fill a gallery with his work and yet have viewers believe several artists are represented.

To support his art, he works as a graphic designer for eMerge, designing websites and logos. His work hangs in several galleries, including Artists’ Galleries de Juneau in Slidell. His work is online, as well. Available for commissions through his Facebook page, Litchliter Art, he offers lively paintings with a jazz soul.

Originally appeared 02/13/2016 at

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