Case Study: Unholy Trinity Triptych Calligraffiti Panels

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3 x 15″x15″ acrylic on black artboard panels

This triptych originally started as a single piece. I wanted to further explore abstract blackletter strokes by mixing together different brush sizes, color densities, and complimentary flourishes.

When using a single brush size, my work tends to become more static as is generally confines itself to a grid that is drawn in faded graphite (and later removed). I generally find this grid to be important as it helps reinforce a uniformity throughout the piece.

In the interest of creating a more organic composition, I forewent the grid and created all of the strokes freehand without any sort of guidelines. This resulted in a more sporadic layout.

'Unholy Trinity' Triptych Calligraffiti Panels by Jake Rainis

I chose to use several different paint markers, each of which have their own unique characteristics.

  • The Molotow 627HS 15MM white paint marker is my favorite paint marker. Depending on how saturated the tip is, it allows you to achieve a variety of strokes ranging from faded, streaky, subdued lines all the way to splotchy thick saturated lines. Using a mix of these lines, I was able to create a series of layered strokes.
  • The Grog Cutter 08 XFP 8MM white paint marker comes with weak, high flow pigment. This allowed me to create smaller faded lines to fill in some of the open space in the composition and to create the thinner hairline flourishes found throughout the pieces.
  • 'Unholy Trinity' Triptych Calligraffiti Panels by Jake Rainis

    I also used a silver Montana paint marker and a gold OTR paint marker to drip and spray the muddled textures around the piece.

    'Unholy Trinity' Triptych Calligraffiti Panels by Jake Rainis
    'Unholy Trinity' Triptych Calligraffiti Panels by Jake Rainis

    This triptych, comprised of sharp strokes and muddled textures, evokes feelings of chaos and evil. It is for this reason that I decided to call it “Unholy Trinity”.

    'Unholy Trinity' Triptych Calligraffiti Panels by Jake Rainis