Graphite & Colored Pencil Drawing on Paper, 2018

“Roy Rogers Pocket Knife” by Mike Pitzer

This was another one of those cool birthday gifts I got as a kid. I, actually, think it was a promotional tchotchke sent to my Dad when he worked at Willey Sign Company in Mt. Clemens, Michigan. He gave me a lot of things in his lifetime; his penny collection, his high school graduation watch and his father’s retirement watch from Packard Motor Company. I still have ‘em all, except this knife, which I lost off our dock in the St. Clair River.

Roy Rogers Pocket Knife by Mike Pitzer
Roy Rogers Pocket Knife detail by Mike Pitzer
Roy Rogers Pocket Knife detail by Mike Pitzer
Roy Rogers Pocket Knife detail by Mike Pitzer
Roy Rogers Pocket Knife detail by Mike Pitzer

My art is not an exercise in, nor an attempt to master hyper realism. My drawings came from an inner desire to find “happiness” again. A creative satisfaction I was no longer getting from simply being an advertising Creative Director. Don't get me wrong, I love the ad biz, but the last several years had sucked the happiness out of it for me. My wife, Lynn encouraged me to start drawing again and as I did I looked for that thing that would inspire me. That "thing" turned out to be “things” that made me happy as a kid growing up in Algonac, Michigan. As I continue to see, these things make other people happy too.

As an ad guy, I thought there had to be an art movement out there like “tribalism” or “familiarism”, art that people identify with at an emotional level. (OMG! Ad speak...) I haven't found one yet. Lynn had an idea that sounded interesting — “Evocationism”. She said it was the act of calling forth — evoking of old memories. From postings on Facebook, that's what's happening. Friends are telling me how fun and cool this series is. Which is why I've been calling this work “Happy Art” — because it's brought my happy back!
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  • Title: “Roy Rogers Pocket Knife”

  • Artist: Mike Pitzer

  • Medium: Venus PRISMACOLOR & FaberCastell Graphite Pencils on paper

  • Image Size: 22" W x 66" T

  • Signed & Dated: MPitzer '18

  • Series: “Happy Art”


  • Happy Art

  • Fig Tree Gallery

  • Drawing

  • Pencil Art

  • Roy Rogers Pocket Knife

  • Mike Pitzer Artist

  • Fresno Artists