James Mylne is a British contemporary artist known for his drawings in ballpoint pen. His technical abilities with the unorthodox art medium have earned Mylne recognition in Europe and the UK, where he is considered among the leaders of the genre and emulated by art students. The Ballpointer online journal called Mylne “Britain’s premier ballpoint pen artist” in a 2015 feature article. The artist’s photorealist likenesses of iconic celebrities attracted early media attention and continues to be one aspect of his output. Mylne also creates mixed-media works adding spray paint, magic markers and more to his ballpoint originals. – Wikipedia.
Stages of drawing an eye in ballpoint pen. 2010.
“As a teen I discovered the benefits of using ballpoint pens over pencil for creating photo realistic artworks.
From the age of 19 I was selling my ballpoint drawings. Back then I was literally one of the only people on the planet working in biro.
At university my tutors were not too keen on my drawings, viewing them as just pretty pictures (twits). Now I’m the only professional artist from that course and ballpoint drawing has grown in popularity, becoming an accepted medium within the art world.
In the last ten years I have expanded on the technique to include other media such as spray paints, markers, inks, and even collage.
James is considered a “pioneer” for the ball-point art movement/medium.
One drawing can take between 25 – 100 hours to complete. The biggest of his drawings took over 300 hours.
His artwork recently exhibited in a sell out show in New York (more here). His work has also been exhibited in Los Angeles, Milan, Paris, & Ibiza.
He was featured on BBC London news with exhibition coverage and an interview in 2104, view on YouTube here.
Being ballpoint pen, you can’t rub out or paint over mistakes. Basically you can’t make a mistake.
His first solo show at The Conningsby Gallery in 2008 was the first ever exhibition in the UK showing photo realistic ballpoint artworks – possibly Europe.
Mylne has been publicly exhibiting his work since 2008. In 2012 he joined London art gallery Rook & Raven where he had his first sell out solo exhibition ‘Vintage Vogue’. He has since left the gallery and works non exclusively with various creative agents, galleries, & art dealers.
The first artist in the world to create art using both ballpoint and spray paints together.
Influenced by the London street art scene; Mylne has been exhibited alongside Street Art legends such as Shepard Fairey, D*Face, Banksy, Mr. Brainwash and more.
Worked for Bic (maker of the pens he uses) to create a video of him doing one of his artworks that now has had over 730,000 hits on YouTube. See the video here.