Interview: Jennifer Chaparro - Hyper-Realistic Street Painting
Jennifer Chaparro converts the streets into an open gallery with her hyper-realistic paintings. She also works on murals, customized products, and chalkboard arts using soft pastel chalks and washable tempera paint.
It all started as a fun activity with her daughters. Other people began to gradually notice her work and now she is doing it full time.
Jennifer Chaparro: I am an artist with both formal and informal training. I have a BA in Design from UCLA, but I learned the art of street painting by doing it. My grandfather was an art professor and sculptor and I have two daughters who have both worked with me over the years. I now teach the art of street painting to people of all ages, in addition to traveling all over creating these custom pieces of art.
Jennifer Chaparro: I started street painting for fun as something to do with my 14 year old daughter at the Lake Worth Street Painting Festival. After a couple of years, people started offering to pay me to come and do the chalk art at their events, and then when I was laid off, I decided to go full time with the street painting. It has become a way for me to be creative, work large, reach many people with my art and travel to places I’ve never been. It has also been a great way to meet and connect with other street artists. It was so awesome to go to Germany this past summer and win 3rd place in the 3D category at the Street Art Festival in Wilhelmshaven. I am the first American to win any award at that event.
Jennifer Chaparro: I do both traditional Italian style street painting and also the 3D anamorphic style art. I use both washable tempera paint and regular pastel chalk for most of the pieces. They can range from 5’ x 5’ up to 20’ x 35’ and can take 4 hours up to 2-3 days. I work alone, but also hire other artists to assist me if the work is large. This kind of street painting has been around since the 1700’s, but really got popular in the last 10 years, mainly because of the internet.
Jennifer Chaparro: I have been told it was amazing many times, so I named my business Amazing Street Painting. I have also been told my work is sometimes better than the original art. My style is very realistic, and I work to make it hard to determine what is real and what is chalk. When people look at the pictures, especially the 3D pieces, and can’t tell that it’s chalk on the road, that is the best compliment.