About The Artist:
Clifford Daniel was born in Kansas in 1963, his family moved to Colorado in the early 70's. Denver is where he spent most of his time growing up. In 1984 he packed his bags for a new and warmer life in Phoenix Arizona. This is where he makes his home today with his wife Odette and son Maxwell.
Cliff has been expressing his artistic talents since he was a child. He created his first oil painting at the age of four, it was a green house with a black and red door and a window in the attic. It was crude of course but there was no mistake that it was indeed a house. Later he found himself in trouble with the 1st Grade teacher for doodling on his work papers. There was even concern from the school faculty that he may have a "mental problem". His love of Automobiles also started at an early age. The Matchbox cars he played with as a child were a source of endless fascination. Cliff began to draw the cars that he played with. They were always the "cool" looking ones with the big tires and sporty paint. As he grew older and learned more from school art and craft classes, his car drawings gradually gained more realism.
During his high school years he took any and every art class available. It was during this time he learned the basic skills of art such as color, shading, perspective and form. Eventually there were no more classes available at school, he had taken them all. At this point the public school he was attending had a class offering called "Art Seminar". This class provided students with a hour or two each day to work on any sort of art project that they wanted. One of his first projects was a collage of miscellaneous images on newsprint, rendered in pencil. This piece of artwork won 3rd place in a city wide scholastic art contest. It was during this time Cliff began to really focus on and refine his talent for drawing all things mechanical. Automobiles have always been his favorite to draw but he also dabbled with Motorcycles, Aircraft, Boats etc. Cartooning was also another artistic avenue he pursued from time to time.
After graduating high school Cliff attended a trade school for auto mechanics. He couldn't see a future in art at the time, so this seemed to be a natural choice given his affinity for fast cars and mechanical repair work. At this time he believed he was destined to be some sort of auto mechanic, maybe even racing. When those dreams didn't pan out he found himself in Phoenix working as a Mechanical Assembler. His employers discovered his artistic abilities and attention to detail. They soon promoted him to a Drafting position in the Engineering department. This job satisfied his desire to draw until the company began utilizing computers to do drafting.
After several years of perfecting his craft in his spare time, drawing in pencil, ink and watercolor media, he took it to the next level of artistic quality. In 1990 he made his first serious attempt to utilize the stippling method of pen and ink drawing, this piece is titled "The Works".
It is an abstract, somewhat cubistic drawing of nuts, bolts and gears. The stippling method of drawing is very tedious and time consuming. It uses tiny dots in different density and patterns to create form and shading. The true definition of the method dictates that no solid lines or areas be used to create shape. In Cliff's stippling style he does use solid lines and areas. This allows him to create Automobile art with sharp lines and features and use the softness of the stippling for shading. Cliff practiced this new art form until he was confident enough to present it to the buying public. In 1993 he started his part time art business known as Zot Productions. The Zot name is a trademark that Cliff has been using for 20 years and is now legally registered in Arizona. Since his formal debut at an art show in the Scottsdale Galleria he has been commissioned many times to immortalize the Automobiles of enthusiasts in the Phoenix area.
Return to Zot Productions Home Page