Art biography

by Delyan Kostov

I was born in 1980 in a small town in South East Europe called Dimitrovgrad (Bulgaria). Much of my childhood was spent exploring the local river and surrounding forests. Fourteen years later I moved to the neighbouring town, Haskovo, where my mother wanted me to study cooking and business studies at high school. I did not study art at this time.

I then travelled to different places, but it was in Germany, from 2000 to 2002, that I became familiar with the airbrush for the first time. I worked full time in a pizzeria but at night I experimented with the airbrush on used pizza boxes. In time I was able to support myself with air brush work.

What is an airbrush?

The airbrush is a small airgun which mixes the airflow (usually from a compressor) with the paint, causing the paint to come out in a fine spray.

This is where the name of my website “Paint in the air” .com, comes from.

That is why the airbrush / spraygun is superior to a normal paint brush because it can reach into every crack and crevice. It is excellent for blending colours, and for fading colours in and out.

I found the Spray gun especially useful when painting large areas like walls, especially when the surface is uneven, or when there are details that need to be lacquered. It is a multipurpose tool and can be used in many other ways.

When did you start painting?

All children like to draw but most of them lose interest sooner or later…! Well I didn't. Factors and Persons that have influenced my style and painting abilities When I was young, my dad drew really good pictures of dogs for me,… they seemed good at the time anyway. My mom could draw well too, so probably I have some art in my genes.

During 1988 and 1989 I took private lessons from Andrei Kamenov, a local graphic artist in Haskovo. There I studied basic techniques such as how to capture light and shadow, how to crosshatch strokes, and so on. I became really engrossed in this. These lessons were to prepare me for the entry exam for university where I planned to study fashion design. However, I was not accepted.

Later I moved to Germany where I lived amongst "Kunstlers," or artists. One of them was Ivan Kostolov, a well known fine artist in Bulgaria, who showed me some basic techniques in oil painting. At that time he was studying free art at the Mainz University and later Frankfurt Art Academy. Spending quite a lot of time in his workshop , and that of fellow artists, completely changed my view of what people call art.

Meanwhile I was painting and preparing myself for a second attempt at university education, this time in the line of industrial design. Again I was unsuccessful. The reason this time was my high school diploma was not recognised by the German university.

Shortly after that, I bought equipment to do tattoos and started to pursue this line of art. (Later when I started learning about GOD'S view point about tattoos , I stopped doing it . Why Study the Bible?

I attempted again for a third and last time to attend the art academy in Sofia and in Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria. Probably because I was so half hearted about studing art, I was once again rejected. I began to realise that an art diploma was no longer important to me.

Up until 2005 I had taken part in exhibitions which were organised by the Haskovo artists’ club, of which I was a member. But then I organized my own exhibition.

I found it disappointing that I seldom sold any of my paintings and that I had to support myself by working in a bar. However it was there I met Petar Angelov, a security guard working in the night clubs.

He knew how to spray paint cars and motor cycles. From him came the idea to airbrush designs on cars and bikes, so I soon quit my job in the bar. We made our humble start in his garage. In the beginning it was hard to make ends meet as our main clients were the local rockers, and they didn’t have much money.

After a while I started working alone and my work took a number of different directions- I painted ceilings, walls, blinds, clothes, doors, in children’s bedrooms, clubs and cafes, a circus, cosmetic and spa centres, but I also painted on canvas. Lately I have done mostly wall paintings and canvas portraits. Only on request.

In the end, I can say that although I don’t have any formal art education I have teachers and professors in the school of life. The teachers and professors in art academies and universities shape their students viewpoint, to a large degree, in accord with their personal view of art, but in the school of life, I was able to choose which instructors I wanted to follow. They were the persons whose art work I admired, studied and tried to imitate. All the time my personality, sense of aesthetics and view of art was continually changing, and therefore the persons I learnt from changed accordingly.

There is, however, One Artist, Professor and Designer who I have been honoured to get to know. He has influenced my sense of aesthetics and my ability to paint more than anyone else. He is the Creator of all colours and the Constructor and Designer of everything animate and inanimate in nature, and the whole universe – Jehovah God.

“You are worthy, Jehovah our God, to receive the glory and the honor and the power, because you created all things, and because of your will they came into existence and were created.” (Revelation 4:11)

Having the NATURE as my main source of inspiration, I'm not deceiving myself pretending to be a Creator. Rather I'd like to view myself merely as a DISCOVERER and IMITATOR.

Exploring nature by means of observation, we DISCOVER this mind-blowing diversity of shapes and colors among all living creatures and the inanimate parts of nature. All this is A great source of DELIGHT and INSPIRATION for us, human beings.

REFLECTING these things and incorporating them into an ART WORK through our own IMAGINATION, we actually IMITATE the things already brought to existence.

All that beauty, magnificent design and the marvelous structure seen throughout the whole Universe, including the amazing ability of our mind to imagine things....all this is witnessing to the Qualities of Our Loving God - THE GRAND MASTER OF CREATION, Jehovah. (Romans 1:20)