Jimi Hendrix

Lake Washington by Jimi Hendrix
Lake Washington by Jimi Hendrix
North Coast by Jimi Hendrix
North Coast by Jimi Hendrix
Mountains In The Clouds by Jimi Hendrix
Mountains In The Clouds by Jimi Hendrix
Seattle Skyline by Jimi Hendrix
Saettle Skyline by Jimi Hendrix
House Burning Down by Jimi Hendrix
Rainy Day Dream Away by Jimi Hendrix
Voodoo Child by Jimi Hendrix
Gypsy Eyes by Jimi Hendrix
There should be little new to learn about Jimi Hendrix, on account that the majority of us know so much already about the man, his music and his legacy. Yet there is. And that’s the chapter entitled, ‘Jimi Hendrix; The Graphic Artist’. Fanciful figures residing in his own very vivid imagination and subsequently abstract designs have recently entered the public domain for the first time, with over forty pen and pencil examples most recently, focusing almost entirely on these colourful creations, yet before this we’ve been privy to a selection of landscapes and doodled upon lyric sheets which provide fascinating visual insights into the mind of one of the most iconic musicians of his generation, and one whom inspired so many future ones. Born in 1942, yet prematurely taken from us in 1970 at the age of just 27, it wasn’t until a couple of years after his passing that an art and antique dealer in Florida purchased a collection of Hendrix’s watercolour paintings, which he immediately placed in storage until as recently as 2004. At this time ownership of this collection was transferred to Hendrix Original Art Expressions, which set about obtaining the copyrights to these images.

Whilst he spent his formative years drawing and painting landscapes familiar to him in and around Seattle where he grew up, it was during later years while touring and performing as a world-renown musician that he developed this alternative, abstract style, and quite the departure from his original offerings. His publicity agents at the height of his fame mention that Hendrix always had his sketchpad close at hand, as well as art boards, and was often observed conceptualising and drawing these very vivid creations which often began their life as seemingly spontaneous doodles. Yet they evolved into intricate and highly elaborate compositions, which Hendrix was said to execute with 5 watercolour pens held between his fingers of one hand, leaving the other hand free to articulate the original outline.
Hendrix’s biographers support the claims that suggest the rock star showed huge interest, coupled with a special talent for art during his school years, yet displayed no interest in music whatsoever through this period.

In 1951, whilst in his 3rd year of high school, Hendrix concentrated on drawing pictures of cars in his school notepad, and by the time he reached 12 years of age his peers and teachers noticed his promise in this area. Such was his passion for capturing the likeness of automobiles, that Hendrix even sent some of his compositions to the Ford Motor Company. At the age of 15, it’s reported that Hendrix observed Elvis Pressley leaving a concert in Seattle and promptly drew a picture of Elvis holding a guitar, similar to the one he had at this time, after discovering music in the interim period. Yet his artistic persuasions were never far away, as even as a young, aspiring musician Hendrix filled blank areas of letters and postcards he penned with illustrations, albeit of his guitar.

It was around the mid-1960s when Hendrix’s style of art changed again, and when he started producing extremely colourful, almost hypnotic figures from deep within his subconscious being, which many noted coincided with his well-documented experimenting with LSD and other mind-altering illegal substances. Art critics refer to these pictorial musings as ‘unique, hallucinogenic works of art’, and as well as being vivacious of hue and saturation, the detailing was equally as intense and restless on the eyes. Being anywhere between 4 and 18 inches in overall size, Hendrix’s powerful and uber creative work during this period were always seen as immediate, intimate and precise in manner, and probably because he was known to be extremely near sighted and chose never to wear glasses.

Hendrix was also responsible for a percentage of his own album cover artwork, whilst to non-commercial effect he’d also lend his own personal designs to his guitars, often seeing them manifest with luminous, graphically abstract representations of his thoughts and feelings at that juncture.

View All Art Works By Jimi Hendrix