After departing from a Graphic Design career in favor of a love of music production, it’s clear that Robert Manning has still got a creative flair when it comes to illustration. This multi-talented creative loves anything that allows him to express himself. What started out as just fun has turned into an obsession of his, after buying various pens, inks, and watercolours to help create his ‘unfinished’ portraits. The amount of work that has gone in to these seemingly photorealistic pieces is just staggering.
Here we see the famous film star Bill Murray, as well as other beautiful and recognisable faces, depicted in stunning accuracy using an inventive colour palette and envying illustrative style, that somehow seems to come extremely naturally to Manning, who, has always stated that it was just a hobby (Studying music production at Kingston university is currently his main focus, as well as utilising his talents on an impressive collection of bass guitars). However the amount of attention that the portraits garner on social media websites suggests it could be a full-time occupation one day, if the multi-disciplinary can find the time.
‘Unfinished’ is usually a word associated with poor-quality work, but here we see the effect that an unfinished work can have on us, adding another layer of interest and meaning, taking them more into the conceptual fine-art realm.
There’s a real buzz about his work, and it’s clear to see why. With demands for prints of Robert Manning’s work, it would be easy for him, like so many others who decide to ‘sell out’, to profit from his creativity. However he has stayed true to himself by not replicating his work, instead deciding to use his work as promotional gifts to continue to gradually build an internet presence. I myself am even lucky enough to have an original of his work on my living room wall.