Top Hats and Knives: Review of Tuna Ferit

Top Hats and Knives: Review of Tuna Ferit

When I first looked at the pencil art featured at the Society by Tuna Ferit, I was blown away. Revisiting it again several days later with a more discerning eye however… no, I was still blown away. The first and third submissions especially are bordering on photo-realistic. Looking at this art actually sparked a lively debate between myself and my fiance, and to keep this review from simply being ham-fisted adoration of a particular artist (which he totally deserves), I will explain my feelings on the debate with you in an attempt to provide some form of reflection.


Both my fiance and I are regular visitors to the site, and when we observed this art we both had no question as to the talent of Tuna. What the debate consisted of was the artistic merit of this type of art. “Why not just take a picture?” was the question posed by my fiance, who has struggled with the merit of drawing photo-realistic pictures herself. Indeed, that question is a fair one. In an age where anyone with a few bucks for a camera and some photo-editing software can make artsy black and white photos readily available on their Myspace and Facebook pages, what is the point of photo-realism in art? Aside from the obvious advantage to the artist of being around hot naked women for far longer when drawing them than when simply taking a picture (and indeed is not all success based on the amount of time we spend around hot naked women?), is there a difference between a glamour shot, and a picture drawn with remarkable flair by an accomplished artist like Mr. Ferit? I would argue that there is, though for some reason, I do have a hard time coming up with concrete reasons why, which is unusual for me (friends and family members know and fear my concrete reasons because in debates I tend to utilize them to bury challengers as if they were Jimmy Hoffa). I don’t know if it’s just innate that the time invested, whether by oneself or by another, leads to increased value, or whether a pencil artist can capture life in a way that photographs can’t, I simply don’t have an answer, but I know that when I look at something that was created with a brush or a pencil that looks as though it was created with a camera, I am far more impressed.


This is not to say that I do not appreciate photography as an art, and honestly part of what really makes Tuna’s work stick out for me is that even were he simply a photographer the pictures would have still impressed me, the fact that they are hand drawn only heightens the impact. I personally believe that regardless of your opinion in the debate about the merits photography when compared to other forms of art and visa versa, artists with the caliber of Tuna Ferit can serve as an inspiration for all types of artists regardless of their chosen medium.

Copyright Nicholas Collins, All Rights Reserved.

All Artwork Copyright Tuna Ferit, All Rights Reserved.