Article by Rachel Verslues
Derek Patten grew up in Jefferson City, attending Immaculate Conception grade school and Helias High School, where he “messed around” with paint. His family moved to New Orleans in 2000 and in 2004 he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Film, Television and Communications from the University of New Orleans.
He then moved to Los Angeles to pursue his passion for film. He spent years working as an assistant and in the art department for Jerry Bruckheimer Films but in his spare time, he painted, mostly on canvass. Several of his pieces reflect a dark, pop art street influence and an abstract flare.
“I loved going to the museums and other galleries and shows in Los Angeles and became intrigued with the pop art style, street art and stenciling in Los Angeles,” he said. “I didn’t start doing my own pieces until 2011.”
He counts Richard Prince, an American painter and photographer, and Robert Del Naja, 3D, an English vocalist, musician and songwriter for Massive Attack, who gained attention initially as a graffiti artist.
After moving back to Missouri in 2013, Patten started his business A Real Painter, where he and his partner handle residential and commercial painting. Whether a mural or canvas, a home or office, Derek loves to discover what a client is “picturing” and making that a reality.
He jokingly says, “if you think it, I can paint it,” and there may be some truth to that.
While visiting his family, he painted several murals for a Scooter Shop on the well-known Magazine Street, the most notable one is of the New Orleans, La., NOLA, City Skyline.
He currently resides in Columbia and works throughout Mid-Missouri. Check out his A Real Painter Facebook page to see some of his work, including this mural done for the downtown residence of Gene Fairfax, a partner in Homeland Roofing.
“Gene found a photograph he liked and I turned it into a stencil and added my own touches,” Patten said.