Drew Roulette

It really struck me that I could create something that might free our imagination…

Not too long ago, Drew Roulette was into esoteric manuscripts and books and painting bold, psychedelic but naturalistic figures peppered with abstraction. He works from words to images, with each painting’s inspiration and eventual shape coming from a witty—sometimes hilarious—title. Recently, he’s received commissions from different companies and organizations and has expanded his artistic horizons further by adding portions of manuscripts and text into these larger paintings. Conversely, the Los Gatos native has taken to doing his “pun” paintings on canvases as small as two-inch square, to focus his bright, trippy aesthetic even more. As a side gig, he also makes art on the stage, playing bass for Dredg, the criminally underrated and arguably most successful band to come out of the South Bay.

“I’ve always read weird psychedelic stuff. Recently, I found this book by an Italian guy, who’s old now, but the book is full of a fake language and strange alien-like drawings. People have pored over it for years, calling it a hoax, and the author agreed. He said before he learned to read, he’d look at a book and make up a story, pretending he could read. Then, when he’d actually learned, he’d get so upset at the difference between his story and the original that he just made his own book. I thought what a cool idea—it struck me that I could create something that might free our imagination to tap those deep, inner-child stories.”

Written by Tad Malone
Photography by Daniel Garcia

This article originally appeared in Issue 8.4 “Profiles”

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