Tell us about yourself, who are you, where are you from, and what do you make?
“Hey. I’m Tripper Dungan from Portland OR, and I make 3D art.”
How did you get started making the type of art you make?
“I’ve always loved drawing, painting and making things, and I’ve been painting 3D paintings since 1999. I had saved a pair of Chromadepth 3D glasses from when I was 14. It was hidden away in an old sketch pad, and I saw that it reacted with my colors in a specific way and I did some experiments and made some adjustments. Throughout the years I’ve developed it into what I do today. It’s pretty fun trying to make it look natural with and without the 3D glasses.”
What’s your inspiration?
“I have a lot things that give me inspiration, mostly cartoons from the 30s, but recently I’ve found a lot of inspiration from my early adolescence. I’ve been writing about things my brother and I did while our family moved around the country in the early 90s. I’ve been throwing some roadside attractions and BMX bikes into my paintings. ”
What is art to you?
“Not sure if you’re asking for a definition but making art has been a lifesaver. It’s what has always been there for me. I put a lot of hours into painting and all the other things that go along with running your own business. It can be tiring, but I love creating things that no one else would have and sharing it with folks.”
What does your typical day look like?
“I spend a lot of time with my daughter (she’s almost 4 and idolizes Davy Crocket) and way not enough time with my wife (she’s funnier than I am) and I paint as much as I can in between and late into the night.”
How have others responded to your work?
“I love it when I get a genuine response from a kid that tells me I’m his favorite ever. It happened a handful of times and it only makes me glow brighter. And then there’s the folks that get created out. Both are valid responses.”
What do you hope to accomplish with your work?
“I really want to connect with people with my art. I want to make people happy and I want to make them laugh. It sounds kind of insignificant when I say it but it’s what I’m best at, and its my contribution to life. ”
What’s the best advice you’ve been given?
“My cousin Hilary Pfeifer is an artist as well and she’s always given me good advise. Even if I don’t take it. I can’t think of anything in particular right now.”
Any words of wisdom to aspiring artists who want to pursue a similar career?
“2 things. Being an artist is hard and challenging and the rewards are more spiritual than monetary. And 2: try a bunch of different things. Your art should be unique and your approach to selling it should be too. Etsy might work for you but not your peers. Galleries and trade show’s might work for your peers but not for you. Same applies to supporting merchandise. The fun thing about being an artist is you get to be creative. Maybe key chains or pillows might be that thing that makes the difference between having to work a day job or not.”
What are your thoughts on art school?
“It sounds fun. I haven’t gone. I went to a public high school with an arts focus. It was a great experience. From what I understand the value in art school is in the connections you make there. Any way you slice it you got to put in the hours if you want to be good.”
Have any future aspirations that you’d like to share?
“Sometime in the next year I want to make a little house that people can enter and see a bunch of art that I’ve been making. At this point I’m calling it Lookie House.”
What’s your dream project?
“Mini golf resort. Not a joke.”
What art supplies do you use?
“I use mainly salvaged wood and acrylic paint, and lately I’ve been screen printing stickers.”
Any other artists that you would like to recommend for others to check out as well?
“Yes. As I mentioned before my cousin Hilary Pfeifer she goes by Bunny with a tool belt, and make fun wooden figures and is doing a lot more public art these days.
There’s so many others its hard to name just a few. I have a great links section on my website which is numberstar.com. Tuns of great people there, and also all my art goings on. My Instagram is also a great spot to see what I’ve been up to. It’s @tripperd
Thank you so much for this interview.”
Like this interview? Share it with all your quirky friends, and be sure to check out Tripper’s Instagram. There’s some pretty cool stuff there.