Tuesday, December 24, 2013


Last year, as a part of Artisphere in Greenville, The Greenville Journal hosted an online art competition. Local artists' work was posted on the Greenville Journal Facebook page. Individuals could then vote (only once) for a painting or sculpture as their choice for Best in Show. I had two paintings in the show. "Garibaldi's"
Oil on Canvas
95"x 65"

"Billiard Players"
Oil on Canvas
30" x40"

"Billiard Players" received lots of votes but did not win the contest. "Garibaldi's" however, received more than 1,100 votes and WON the contest!! A few months later, TOWN magazine, who is owned by the Greenville Journal, decided to write a short article about yours truly.

Check out pages 56-57 of the December issue of TOWN magazine!!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Another Favorite

Sydney Laurence's oil paintings are some of my all time favorites. He was an American artist whose most notable work was created in the early 1900s. Laurence was classically trained in New York at the Art Students League of New York. He later moved to Alaska where he would live and work until his death in 1940. 

These Alaskan landscapes are amazing. It is easy to see why many people love his work so much! 

Early Anchorage, Alaskan Salmon Cannery
oil on canvas 
Fishing Vessel at Sea
oil on board

Mount McKinley (1921)
oil on canvas

To learn more about Sydney Laurence visit here:

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Fear Not

I recently sketched a few sculpture ideas for a potential client. I filmed one of the drawings. The theme for the piece will be courage in the face of danger and drawing strength from your protector. 

Fear Not
by Charles Pate Jr

Sacred Heart

My dad and I recently worked on a sculpture for St. Mary's Catholic Church in Greenville, SC. They wanted a depiction of the sacred heart of Christ. This is an image that is seen throughout art history.

As always, the first step in creating a sculpture is building an armature. This one was especially difficult. The figure had to be 8ft tall, and because we were going to have to transport the clay to the foundry ourselves, we decided to make an armature that would allow the piece to be taken apart and transported in thirds. There are seams at the shoulders and waist.  A foam silhouette cut-out of the figure was made to size our armature.

The structure is made of wood, steel, and pvc pipe. Wire mesh was used to make a surface to which the clay could adhere. The rest of the hollow form was stuffed with insulation foam. This provides a sturdy shape without adding much additional weight.

The sculpture is starting to take shape.

Here, my dad measures some of the figure's proportions. With him in the picture, it is easy to see how large the piece is.

As previously stated, the figure was built so that it could be separated into thirds. We put the pieces onto my truck and drove to Atlanta. 

The bottom third was loaded onto a forklift and raised to the second floor mold-making area. 

My dad and I spent a few more hours repairing the minor bumps and scratches that occurred during transportation. We also put the three pieces together and smoothed in the seams. 
In this picture, the seam at Christ's waist has been hidden but you can still see a line across his neck.

After several weeks, we went to Atlanta to approve the wax stage of the project.
For more information about the casting process you can refer back to some of my previous posts.

After the sculpture was cast in bronze, it was delivered and installed for 
 St. Mary's Catholic Church in Greenville.

This is the beautiful base that Christ is mounted on.

The sculpture was unveiled and blessed with the brand new columbarium by Father Newman.

Christ of the Sacred Heart

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Road and Cotton Field

My dad has painted many cotton fields. I think this inspiration comes from his childhood in rural South Carolina. I too am inspired by these wide open spaces. 

This cotton field is one that I worked on. It was a wedding present commissioned by the bride's parents. What a great idea for a newly wed couple. Its never too soon to start your art collection.

Monday, April 29, 2013


As an additional fun event for the public to view, Artfields hosted a portrait contest. Much like American Idol or some other performing contest, all 30 artist had a brief period of time to create a portrait and impress a panel of judges. The models were all local farmers. After each round the field of artist would be cut in half and several artist would be sent home.

Portrait for Round 1
After an hour the judges told us all to stop. Our time was up. After a short discussion the judges called out the 14 names that would advance to round 2. And the very last name called... Charles Pate Jr.

Portrait for Round 2
The judges again cut the group in half. A lot of talented artists were being sent home. YIKES. Fortunately, my name was called and I was moving on the group of 6.

Portrait for Round 3
By the end of the third round I was physically exhausted. But I made the cut and would be in the final round. This final portrait would determine a winner.

Final Portrait
Unfortunately the judges did not pick mine for first place. But after a long day I had to be happy with how the competition went. And, there is always next year. 
I was very thankful to have Sarah there cheering me on. I was also amazed by how friendly all the judges, public, and fellow artists were. 
Congratulations to Joseph Begnaud, who took home first place! 
Check out his work and share the love.


I recently had work accepted to Artfields in Lake City SC. This art festival had local businesses, municipal buildings, and parks serve as venues for artists in 12 Southeastern states (Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia & West Virginia) to display their work and compete for $100,000 in cash prizes. I was honored to be selected from nearly 800 artists.

This is the piece that was selected.
Big Rob
Oil on canvas

My uncle, Martin Pate, was also selected. This is his painting.
Oil on canvas