Ron Croci is a nationally-recognized fine artist based in Palos Verdes, California, where he dedicates his creative time to producing luscious beachscapes and figurative art. Ron’s love for the ocean, vitality and water sports is evident in the intensity and vibrance of every work.
We caught up with Ron to talk about surf, art and everything in between. Enjoy his words and images below.
HEY RON! HOW’S YOUR DAY GOING?
Today, God bless today! Morning was clear and warm again. 7:30 am. Redondo Beach, water 72 degrees, 6 feet, sparkling blue, gentle offshore breeze with tubing barrels and guillotine close outs. I got seven good ones. I have not worn a wetsuit from May 1st and today is October 15th. Six months of no wetsuit. I probably only missed surfing, spearfishing or swimming maybe 14 days out of the entire time.
My recent days have been filled with anxiety concerning my latest commission, which is the cover of my current illustrated book, (#20), “THE ATLAS OF SURFING HISTORY, A journey through time.” However, last night I figured out how to create the perfect composition, giving my client what he wants combined with what he needs. I am blessed over and over.
The trees are turning red on my block, framing our little cottage by the sea in a wreath of color. YES I say! Beautiful, successful children, a loving wife, and a year of paid in advance art work for my book. Now, I must walk a fine line to keep everything under control. This is my joy.
HAD ANY GOOD WAVES LATELY?
Well I go to the beach almost every day very early in the morning to either surf, spearfish or just swim. The tide was too high today so I went to spearfish for Corbina. I caught a nice one about 3 pounds. Just right for my wife and me to make a good dinner out of. But the best part was that I found a $5.00 bill floating on the bottom. It must have come from someone’s trunks. I taped it to my wall.
However my best wave this week was a wave of cash bestowed on me to complete the above mentioned commission. Even though the wave of anxiety is very high, my wave of excitement is soaring.
WHAT ARE THE PERFECT CONDITIONS FOR CREATIVITY?
First let’s ask: What is creativity? And why is an artist’s creativity any more impressive than a mother’s ability to find creative solutions to child raising, or the creative process a doctor might use to diagnose and cure a patients illness. Having said that let me continue by stating that creativity never leaves me. I can and do make something beautiful from anything I see or think of. Artistic creativity is in my every moment no matter what or where I am.
WHO ARE YOUR FAVOURITE ARTISTS BOTH IN THE SURFING WORLD AND BEYOND?
In the surfing world I am my own favorite artist. I must be because I continually look at my art, whether in the process of making it or looking for all the flaws in my past pieces. Other than marine art there is nothing unusual about my taste. I like what everyone else does. Les Caux, Rome, Egypt, Yoshitoshi, Kunioshi, and Dean Cornwell. I site countries and places because an entire country such as Italy is the product of thousands of artists. Hence Rome is an individual unto itself. Just as a single artist’s output is the product of their years, a country’s art is the result of its centuries.
WHAT ARE THE CHALLENGES IN A CAREER AS A SURF ARTIST?
Surf art is not actually a career, but a single subject matter. True I am known for that genre but I am also known for the 47 feature films, over 200 commercials and 20 books I have helped design. My challenges are putting the human figure in all of my marine art. Whether it’s a surfer on a wave, a beach fight, a car rip off or the mentally ill digging through a garbage can on the beach at dawn.
IF YOU GREW UP FAR FROM THE OCEAN AND NEVER HEARD OF SURFING WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU’D BE DOING NOW?
There are millions of things for a surfer to do other than surf. Just pick one and that’s what I might be doing.
DO YOU HAVE A MANTRA OR WORDS OF WISDOM TO LIVE BY?
Yes I do. “Never tell nobody nuttin, and never rat on your friends.”
HOW CAN PEOPLE CONNECT WITH YOU TO SEE MORE OF YOUR ART?
Sure, just put your home page on IMAGES, and type my name in. There are dozens of new works there. Also go to my f.b. page and see MY PICTURES or even go to my web site, www.roncroci.com. Or e mail me at [email protected]