Last month we had the privilege to speak with Edwin Lester about one of his most famous works entitled “Tough to Swallow”. Below you will find a portion of the extensive interview that we had with him where we discussed this piece and more. As usual, Edwin, who is a world renown artist and avid “paint-a-holic” was working on another soon to be released classic while speaking with us in his usual honest and down to earth style.
Q. How did “Tough to Swallow” come about?
A. I was in my basement painting, but I was getting frustrated because everything was coming out looking like someone else’s work and I wanted to infuse more originality into my painting’s subject matter and technique. At this point, I just said a prayer and asked for guidance from the Heavenly Father.
Then I decided to go upstairs for a moment because I paint in my basement. When I got upstairs, I saw my nanny feeding my son and I started thinking that I should be feeding my son. Then I went past that and thought about what I should be feeding my son both physically, mentally and spiritually.
That’s when the concept hit me out of nowhere. I immediately rushed back downstairs to the basement and just started painting and the result is what you see now as “Tough to Swallow”.
Q. Where did the title of the print come from?
A. The title came from a friend of mine named Antonio Davis who was a well known framer in Philadelphia. He is the one that actually named the print.
Q. Anything else that you want to share about the print?
A. Yes, you know DJ Jazzy Jeff was the first person to see the original work of art. I was going to an old art gallery in Philadelphia at the time where my friend Antonio was at. As I was getting out of my car, I spotted DJ Jazzy Jeff getting out of his vehicle.
At this point I decided to approach him so I walked up to him and showed him the piece and asked him what he thought. His response was just like, “That’s Deep, I like it”. After this, I went inside of the art gallery and let me friend Antonio see it and he was just like, “You know what, thats Tough to Swallow! That’s what it is, Tough to Swallow!”. The rest is history as they say.
View “Tough to Swallow” and Edwin Lester’s other creations in our: Edwin Lester Art Gallery