Artist to Know - Robert Longo

Today's artist to know works with charcoal. All of the artwork featured are drawings, even though they look like amazing photographs.

Robert Longo

Robert Longo was born in 1953 in Brooklyn, New York and raised in Long Island. He had a childhood fascination with mass media: movies, television, magazines, and comic books, which continue to influence his art today.

Although he studied sculpture, drawing remained Longo's favorite form of self-expression. Longo's "portraits" have a distinctive chiseled line that seems to give the drawings a three-dimensional quality.

Longo projects photographs of his subjects onto paper and traces the figures in graphite, removing all details of the background. After he records the basic contours, his long-time illustrator, Diane Shea, works on the figure for about a week, filling in the details. Next, Longo goes back into the drawing, using graphite and charcoal to provide finishing details.

His work has been displayed in museums all over the world, in books, magazines, film, and on an album cover. See more of his work on his website.

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  1. Holy smokes that is cool! thanks for sharing

  2. Amazing! I'm a huge fan of charcoal drawings, so I'm loving all the artwork here :)

  3. Those are absolutely amazing!!

  4. Those were drawings and not photos?

  5. Wow! These are not photos? He is amazing!!!!

  6. His work is incredible. I found it interesting to read that his work is really (more or less) a collaboration between Longo and Shea - the end results are phenomenal, incredibly realistic.


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