Meet Tampa Bay resident and Gyotaku artist Greg Aragon. Gyotaku is the traditional method of Japanese fish printing, dating from the mid-1800s. It is a form of nature printing and may have been used as an ancient way for fishermen to record their catches. Today, this technique is also a popular art form. Click on the photos for more of
Greg’s story. Keep in mind that his rubbings have spanned many years and all fish were caught per regulations and in season.
Artist Greg Aragon loves the sea and was introduced to this special art technique 40 years ago while living in the Florida Keys. He was intrigued at how the rubbings detailed fish scales, fins, sizes and added colors.
Many years later, remembering what he learned before, he started practicing and mastering the techniques and developed his own style and look while staying true to the traditional methods of making Gyotkau. This new art form started as a hobby for Greg, making rubbings for his fishermen friends while he worked as a residential painting contractor.
Soon, his art was so popular it became his full-time job! This new career came naturally to Greg because he fished fresh and saltwater for pleasure most of his life, held his captain’s license for 30 years and loved surrounding himself with the sea and making things from it.
He loves everything about the ocean and has immersed himself in anything having to do with the sea! Greg has made hundreds of rubbings from many different species of saltwater fish.
His favorite fish to rub? Lookdowns, Bull Dolphin, Queen Triggerfish and deepwater Bigeyes, to name a few. This beautiful poster has a small sample of his work.
The coolest, funniest looking fish he’s rubbed is an Opah (Moonfish).
Greg’s work is well known throughout the Tampa Bay area. As such, he has sponsored many charity fishing tournaments there for the past 15 years, including the Old Salts King of the Beach Kingfish Tournament, where he rubs the winning kingfish every fall and spring and that rubbing is auctioned off for charity.
Greg has made rubbings on everything from t-shirts to shower curtains (Lower Right).
Copyright 2013. Greg Aragon. All Rights Reserved.