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Design Turnpike artwork

Design Turnpike

Design Turnpike founded by David Bowman is a platform where he creates artwork and sells it. Bowman became fascinated with car license plates from around the world. This fascination started at a tender age where he started to make collections of them. Bowman included the license plate that was installed on his first car in 1998, in his art collections. Bowman has a studio in Detroit, Michigan, which is a center for automobile manufacturing. He has working relationships with a few art galleries through which he sells artwork that he creates. Bowman also sells his art through Design Turnpike and his website where customers can get license plate art prints and map art.
Design Turnpike PrintsDesign Turnpike Art

Where are you from?

I was born and raised in the suburbs of Detroit, Michigan - The Motor City!

What did you do before devoting your life to art?

I was, and continue to be, a web designer in the automotive industry.

Where do you live now?

Same area - about 10 miles from where I was born.

Does the place you live have an effect on your art?

Absolutely - my primary medium (license plates) have a rich history that started right down the road from where I live and work - Dearborn, MI - the birthplace of the modern automobile industry.

How did you get a career as an artist?

I went to school for graphic design. As part of my education and training, I dabbled in numerous forms of art - painting, drawing, illustration, calligraphy - none of them attracted me as much as mixed media and digital art.
Design Turnpike Dining Room ArtDesign Turnpike Office Art

What job did you have before becoming an artist?

I have held numerous positions in the fields of graphic and interactive design.

When did your career in the arts start?

1998 - my first job as a junior web designer for a local agency.

What is your biggest inspiration for art?

Memories of travel by car as a kid - retro signs - old car ads - vintage, discarded things that are wearing out but that may have a use or two left in them.

When did you first know that you wanted to be an artist?

I got an art set as a gift as a nine or ten year old. I have been creating things ever since.

Have you always worked independently or have you worked with a team since the start of your career in the arts? Which do you prefer?

I prefer working alone in solitude on my art. It helps me relax and produce my best work. I also grumble and react a lot as I encounter roadblocks - wouldn't want that to be overheard! I always anticipate finishing a piece so the rest of the world can finally see it and enjoy it.
Design Turnpike Dining Room ArtDesign Turnpike Office ArtDesign Turnpike Office Art

What kinds of art styles have you tried?

I tried painting - my professors told me to give up. I was always strong at drawing still lifes and representational work. One professor said I was one of the worst calligraphers she had ever seen. Then she discovered I had been using right-handed nibs for half the semester and I am left-handed.

What do you feel is your greatest strength in your art?

Precision, attention to detail, balance of color, new ways of looking things, ability to create a mood with materials.

What are your favorite colors?

Grays, blues, greens, browns as a background and punches of bold color in the foreground to attract attention.

What is your favorite saying or quote?

Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which mistakes to keep.

If you were a new addition to a crayon box, what would your color name be and why?

I really love gray right now so - A muted, clay-ish, sad color of a gray called Grimmy's Grey. A client asked for that as background once on a piece and the name has stuck with me ever since.
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