Beetcafe.com
rockford illinois entertainment guide
Date: 04/29/2003
Immortalize Yourself at Saturn Studio
by Patrick McDonough
patrick@beetcafe.com
I'm sure that a lot of us have had our portrait taken before, but at Saturn Studio they take portrait photography to a different level. According to artists/owners Parry and Mike Donze, "It's a unique process that you can't have done anywhere else. We take a photograph and turn it into a series of 6-7 color serigraph prints." In other words, they take a photograph and from it create a series of brightly colored prints in a style similar to the familiar work of Andy Warhol's Campbell soup cans. The result is a highly stylized frame-able portrait that will immortalize the subject for years to come.

The process begins with a photograph. Either you can stop into to their studio for a portrait session with Mike or bring a photograph that you already have. Then Parry scans the photograph into a computer - outputs the files - then he use films to create printing screens using a light sensitive chemical process in a darkroom - next he cuts film overlays for different areas like eyes, lips and skin tones. The films are created in either a high contrast or coarse (halftone) dot pattern similar to a comic book or Lichenstein style of printing. According to Parry, "What I do is use an old-school hand cutting technique that allows me to make it up as I go." He went on to explain that he enjoys creating these large prints using a variation of both high contrast and coarse dot patterns simultaneously. He tries to push each print in a direction that makes each piece different than the next, thus creating a distinctly unique artwork each time.

The final print takes a matter of a couple days from the initial photo session to the final piece. They figure that each piece takes at least 12 hours to create.

Brothers Mike and Parry Donze opened Saturn Studio nearly 20 years ago as a silk screen t-shirt printing and graphic design studio. Mike's background is in offset printing while Parry brings a fine arts background to the partnership. Aside from being visual artists a they have been in a number of bands around the area in the last 20 years as well. The bands range from probably their most well known band "The Hillworms" with which they have won enough RAMI awards to put them into the RAMI Hall of Fame. Their most recent endeavor was "Pee-Wee and the Wristers." Nowadays you may see them sitting in with a lot of different artists from Pistol Pete to the now defunct Brain Kingdom.
Contact Information
Mike and Parry Donze
Saturn Studio
907 East State St.
Rockford, IL 61104
815.962.7737
saturnstudio@aol.com
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