Derek Wilkinson

At PechaKucha Phoenix this past week, we all received a copy of the book Phoenix: 21st Century City. As I was flipping through it, I recognized several of the featured artists from my time at ASU. It reminded me of all the amazing artwork I was exposed to and the ridiculous talent I brushed elbows with. One that has really stuck in my mind is painter extraordinaire, Derek Wilkinson.

Derek was a bit of an idol of mine, making jaws drop every day with his beautifully detailed portraits. We would often credit his amazing talent to “better-than-regular-vision.” I remember visiting his studio while he was painting his award-winning self portrait for the Nathan Cummings exhibition. He showed me the broken shard of mirror he was using for reference and I couldn’t have been more impressed. And to top it all off, he’s hilarious and incredibly humble.

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