The Process

You’re seeing this preamble because you’re ‘reblogging’. As the creating author of this post, I ask that you please respect my copyrights. How, you ask? In the following manner:

1) keep the title I gave this post;

2) display my name, Ryl Mandus, as its author; and

3) create a functioning link-back to the originating post on this blog,

By all means, quote me if you need to. Someday I may be in the position to return the favor.

Good writing,

— Ryl

In my visual art I try to match medium to style, using anything from graphite to markers, color pencils, inks, watercolors, acrylics, mixed media, oils, et cetera, all dependent upon the mood of the artwork.  I prefer working surfaces with texture, something with tooth to it, and if the surface hasn’t got enough I give it more by applying either a heavy gel medium or a fast-curing gesso.

For the most part I work alone in the studio with the exception of the family cats who always seem to be on the wrong side of any closed door.  I use music to work by that echoes the nature of my current project:  jazz, classical, flamenco, good ol’ rock’n’roll, rhythm ‘n’ blues, and select movie sound tracks.

Most of my more serious works are inspired and spawned by my own memories, dreams and nightmares.  Seeing strong parallels in the world’s mythologies — and being heavily addicted to research and tangent-chasing — causes me to dig around for humanity’s forbidden histories.  I strive to peel back the veneers imposed upon civilization and the human psyche to see what lies beneath them, working to decipher what I find there using the tools of symbol, archetype, and metaphor.

When it comes to the masks, I pretty much let the leather tell me what it wants to become.  The technique is simple enough, a matter of stubbornly wrangling wet leather until it has a shape I like, then giving it colors and sometimes feathers and/or beadwork — it’s time intensive and strenuous physical labor, but simple, though certainly not an undertaking for the lazy or impatient.

Visit my artwork at, and my masks at, and let me know what you think.

~ Ryl


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