By Pat Eby Special for the Post-Dispatch
When self-taught artist Cadence Hodes exhibited his painted vinyl records in March 2020 as part of the Rock the Art exhibition at 31art gallery, the colorful records caught the attention of art lovers and music lovers. Hand painted mandala designs on vinyl do not cover label; labels are part of the art.
As gallery patrons at the Friday night opening gathered around the art, comments about his art hung in the air. The following Monday, the city and county of St. Louis issued shelter-in-place orders.
Hodes took it in stride. She is a full-time counselor and therapist and has been working virtually for two years. “I majored in psychology in college, then finished my master’s just a year and a half ago,” she says.
The pandemic left him more time for art. “How grateful I was, and still am, to have that plug in my house. There’s always something to do, something that stimulates my brain when we had so much free time,” she says. .
paint box • Hodes grew up in a family that encouraged creativity. “My mom is super crafty. Currently, her favorite medium is crochet and knitting. She makes great covers for fun.
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His uncle, Rob Koritz, is a drummer and percussionist who has played with Dark Star Orchestra, the Grateful Dead cover band, since 1999. “My dad is also a huge Deadhead. He gave me all his vinyls. I listen to the ones that are in good condition, and I painted a few that were scratched.
“Creating art started while I was in college to pass the time. When I started painting the vinyls, it was super-therapeutic. Time went by so fast,” she says. “I I would start a ring, then I would close that ring, then I would start the next one – there was never a good stopping point and time was running out.
Ripple • Painting in acrylic on vinyl inspired Hodes to experiment with watercolor on paper. She challenged herself to explore new shapes and color palettes in the process.
“When I started with watercolor I wanted to do different rock shapes, like a geode. When you open it up there are all these layers. That’s the inspiration for the series of paintings that I calls “geodes,” she says.
She also enjoys creating orbs, precision circular images in color fades or soft, muted color combinations. “It took me a while to figure out that orbs relate to vinyl – I like painting circles,” she says.
Keep those cards and letters coming • Hodes also improved his card game when the pandemic took hold. “I made maps in my pre-pandemic work as a non-committal way to play with watercolor, keeping it small.”
She made more cards, intentionally, to send to friends, during the pandemic. “It was an artistic outlet for me. Who doesn’t love receiving a card from their friend out of nowhere? It was a bonus. They can stick it on the fridge or frame it, and it can keep them happy.
Today, Hodes paints and sells his cards in sets of five. She attaches the cards to a clipboard, mixes colors and paints. “It’s just so thrilling to work with such vibrant colors and see how they work together.”
Moments • People often ask Hodes to paint a specific vinyl for them, related to an album they love or to remember a sweet moment in life. Art lovers often send the disc to Hodes, or she helps them buy it through the Internet or private channels.
Hodes encourages people to explore the arts. “Making art really allows you to get out of your own head. Isn’t that what most of us have to do sometimes? ” she says.
Family • Hodes is not the only artist in the family. His mother, Beth Koritz, is an accomplished knitter; her sister Kyra Hodes is a jewelry artist currently living in New Orleans; and his grandfather is developer and abstract painter Mark Koritz. Her grandmother Sue Koritz supports and encourages creative expressions in the family. Hodes lives with his dog, Riggins.
What she does • Colorful works of art created by Cadence Hodes include intricate and colorful freehand painted vinyl records, delicate watercolors on traditional watercolor papers and hand painted stationery. The three expressions of his creativity are based on the interplay of complex rhythms, symmetry and color. His paintings on vinyl records often delineate particular emotions, life stages or memories through titles or associations with musical artists.
Or buy • Hodes sells his work on his website, cadencehodesart.com. She also accepts commissions for custom work. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
How much • Five hand-painted cards with envelopes sell in multi-packs of different designs for $42. Watercolors range from $45 for small works to $245 for large paintings. Paintings on vinyl records cost between $150 and $275. Custom-ordered vinyl records are $225 for 7-inch vinyl and $325 for 12-inch vinyl. Personalized watercolor work on request.