The luckiest guy.

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I must be one of the luckiest guys on the planet because I have managed to combine my passion for cycling with my chosen profession of art. The resulting Cycling Art keeps me busy every day with projects, commissions and just making stuff up for whatever I feel like making stuff up for. Who else do you know that can say that? And I have to thank you all for being there to watch and follow and purchase art as I just bang my way around the computer or easel drawing and painting.

From digital art to pallet knives.

The bulk of my Cycling Art Collection of prints have been created on the computer with Adobe Illustrator as the native program. And if you look at my earliest work to where it has evolved you can see I’ve refined the work over the years. I’m always looking for a great idea in my art not just a pretty picture but I’m not against that either. Digital drawing has been very good to me and has paved the way to my evolution into watercolors and large acrylic paintings on canvas. Both of which I now do on a regular basis. I’m still looking for good ideas only the medium has changed.

Rough Road 100 watercolor by valenti

Watercolors are a bitch.

What I find challenging and therefore fascinating about working in watercolors is you are forced to accept the flaws as part of the product. It’s okay for a drip to happen. Blurry little mistakes become interesting little elements in the work. Where the digital art demands precision at all times and constant redoing of things – watercolors dictate you let it alone and it will live its own life. Don’t try and fix it, its not broken.

Controlling a watercolor painting is like trying to control the peloton in full flight to a sprint finish. It’s a mass of rolling energy that will find the way in and around whatever it needs to and that is a beautiful thing. See more Watercolor Paintings

pave rainbow painting by VALENTI

Large scale paintings.

My newest found passion comes in the form of a 40×60 inch stretched canvas that I cover with paint. I use brushes, pallet knives, cardboard, rags, my fingers, paper plates and anything else I can find that helps me get the paint on canvas. Some paintings take three days, some take three hours – I never know until I get finished. Once I get going my best work happens when I stop thinking and just have fun painting. What is hardest about the work, like with the watercolors, is you have to let go of a certain amount of control. Let the paint happen and don’t try to force it into a place – at least that’s how it works for me. Other artists may be totally the opposite. Loose and fun is my painting mantra. Well right after a good idea, dynamic composition and interesting colors. See other Large Paintings

The box I live in.

What would Milton Glaser do? WWMGD? Milton Glaser is a genius in my book. He has recently passed but I often ask myself, WWMGD? as I start a project. For me this little question reminds me to find an idea that is unique, interesting and relevant and not expected — which brings me to the other question I often ask — WWRSD? What would Ralph Steadman do? As one of my art idols I don’t think you could find a more opposite artist than Ralph Steadman to pair against Milton Glasier but that’s the box I live in. The two ends of my perspective – and my reality is somewhere in the middle – another topic for another day if I’m still feeling lucky.

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Michael Valenti is "The Veloist" - He is an avid cyclist and artist known for his Cycling Art work. Each year Michael chases the Pro Peloton at the Tour de France and other major cycling events. He is available for event and corporate cycling related projects as well as personal commissions for art.

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