ELVIS INTERVIEWS BY JOE KREIN

JOE PETRUCCIO INTERVIEW

THE FOLLOWING WAS A PHONE INTERVIEW WITH MR PETRUCCIO APRIL 28 2007

JOE KREIN: JOE CAN YOU TELL ME A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF?

JOE PETRUCCIO : I WAS BORN IN BROOKLYN NEW YORK . LIVED  THERE UNTIL I GOT MARRIED . I WENT TO SCHOOL FOR VISUAL ARTS. I MOVED UPSTATE TO SUFFORD NEW YORK . NOW I LIVE IN NEW JERSEY .

YOUR NOT TO FAR FROM ME.

I LIKE NEW JERSEY BUT I MISS NEW YORK . I LIKE THE MOUNTAINS. JERSEY IS KIND OF FLAT. THEN I BECAME A SPRINGSTEEN FAN.

I NEVER Mate ANYBODY THAT DIDN'T LIKE SPRINGSTEEN.

YEAH HE'S GREAT . I GO TO HIS CONCERTS.

HAVE YOU EVER MET HIM?

NO ,I'VE NEVER MET HIM. I ALMOST WORKED ON A PIECE WITH HIM. BUT THAT FELL THROUGH. SO AFTER COLLAGE I WENT INTO ADVERTISING. I WANTED TO BE A ILLUSTRATOR. SO I DID ADVERTISING WHILE I WAS LOOKING FOR A JOB AS AN ILLUSTRATOR. KEPT GETTING PROMOTED IN ADVERTISING. THEN ABOUT FOUR YEARS AGO. I JOINED THE ELVIS INSIDERS. I WAS ALWAYS PAINTING FOR MYSELF ON THE SIDE. SO I STARTED TO POST MY PAINTINGS ON THERE. PEOPLE STARTED TO EMAIL ME , WANTING TO BUY MY PAINTINGS.  I SAID TO MYSELF . NO WAY I,M SELLING THEM ON HERE. I WILL GET IN TROUBLE WITH E.P.E . SELLING PAINTINGS OF ELVIS ON HIS WEBSITE. (LAUGHING)

SO I WAS KEEPING THEM TO MYSELF. I NEVER REALLY INTENDED  SELLING THEM . BUT IT WAS NICE TO KNOW THAT PEOPLE WANTED MY WORK. THAT'S WHAT I ALWAYS WANTED TO DO. SO ONE DAY I GOT AN EMAIL FROM GRACELAND , ASKING ME ABOUT MY PAINTINGS.  I SAID TO MY WIFE , THAT'S IT DON'T BUY ANYTHING. (LAUGHING) I FIGURED I WAS GOING TO LOSE THE HOUSE. SO THEY WERE VERY NICE. THEY SAID WE HEAR YOU HAVE SOME PAINTINGS. MEMBERS OF THE INSIDERS WERE ASKING US HOW THEY COULD BUY YOUR PAINTINGS. SO I SENT THEM SOME SAMPLES. THEY REALLY LIKED THEM ,THEY ASKED ME HOW MANY I HAD. AT THAT TIME I HAD ABOUT FORTY. MIND YOU THIS WAS ALL DONE OVER THE INTERNET. I NEVER SPOKE TO ANYONE. I SIGNED ON WITH GRACELAND . SO NOW I'M AN ARTIST FOR THEM . THE FIRST TIME I MET THEM WAS DURING ELVIS WEEK 2003. BUT MY CONTRACT AND EVERYTHING WAS DONE OVER THE WEB. I NEVER SPOKE A WORD TO ANYBODY. IT WAS ALL DONE THRU EMAILS. SO BASICALLY FROM THAT I'VE BEEN PAINTING FOR GRACELAND THE LAST FOUR YEARS. THRU THAT I PICKED UP A PUBLISHER THAT WAS INTERESTED IN MY WORK . THEY HAVE  BEEN PUBLISHING MY WORK AND HAVE BEEN DOING SHOW ALL OVER THE WORLD. SELLING ELVIS ART AND ROCK STARS ART.

WILL THERE BE A BOOK THAT PEOPLE CAN SEE YOUR PAINTINGS IN?

WE ARE TALKING ABOUT THAT NOW. A BOOK WITH ALL MY ART WORK . LIKE A COFFEE TABLE BOOK. BUT A LOT OF MY WORK I CONTINUE TO LICENSE IT THRU GRACELAND. SO THERE ARE THINGS THAT PEOPLE CAN AFFORD. I AM DOING THIS NOW BECAUSE OF THE PEOPLE. SO I LIKE THAT'S THERE ARE PRODUCTS OF MINE THAT THEY CAN HAVE , LIKE POSTCARDS , GUITAR PICKS. I GO TO GRACELAND A LOT. I GO DOWN AND SIGN FOR PEOPLE. I SIGN FOR PEOPLE EVEN IF THEY DON'T BUY SOMETHING. BECAUSE I REALLY LOVE ELVIS. THE FANS ARE GREAT AND THERE'S NOTHING THAT I WONT DO FOR THEM.

YOUR REALLY A CINDERELLA STORY. YOU ALWAYS HEAR PEOPLE PUTTING DOWN E.P.E. LOOK WHAT THEY HAVE DONE FOR YOU.

I GOT TO TELL YOU , THEY ARE THE NICEST PEOPLE .THEY REALLY ALWAYS DO HAVE THE FANS INTEREST IN HEART . THERE NOT ONE THING SINCE I HAVE BEEN WORKING WITH E.P.E THAT I REGRET. I WISH EVERYBODY WAS LIKE THEM .

HAVE YOU BEEN THROUGH THE MANSION?

YES I'VE BEEN THROUGH MANY TIMES.

WHEN YOU DO A PROJECT , DO YOU TAKE A PHOTO AND THEN EXTEND THE COLORS? A LOT OF YOUR PHOTOS LOOK LIKE PHOTOS THAT I AM FAMILIAR WITH . PHOTOS I RECOGNIZE. DO YOU JUST ADD TO THAT?

I USE PHOTOS AS REFERENCE , BUT I TAKE PAPER OR CANVAS AND I PAINT THEM . I MEAN I DON'T PAINT OVER THE PHOTO. A LOT OF THINGS I DO , I WILL USE HIS FACE OR A GESTURE. THEN I WILL HAVE SOMEONE MODEL SOMETHING FOR ME. I WILL CREATE A IMAGE THAT DOES NOT EXIST OF ELVIS. LAST YEAR I DID ELVIS IN A HOUNDS TOOTH OVERCOAT STANDING OUTSIDE OF GRACELAND AT NIGHT WHILE IT WAS SNOWING . THERE ARE NO PICTURES LIKE THAT . I JUST FINISHED NOW , ELVIS LEANING BACK IN A BLACK LEATHER JACKET ON A BIG HARLEY SOFT TAIL . I JUST SENT THAT OFF TO GRACELAND. SO THERE ARE MANY IMAGES THAT I PAINT THAT THERE ARE NO PHOTOS OF. I THINK THAT'S ONE OF THE THINGS THAT GRACELAND LIKED ABOUT MY WORK. I WAS BRINGING A LITTLE FRESH LIFE TO ELVIS AND TRYING TO KEEP HIM COTEMPORARY.

I AGREE . I THINK ITS GREAT THAT THEY USE YOUR ART. I,M A BIG FAN. . I THANK YOU FOR DOING THIS FOR ME.

ANYTIME LIKE I TOLD YOU . I LOVE ELVIS  , I LOVE THE FANS . THEY HAVE BEEN SO NICE TO ME ,AND POINTED MY LIFE IN A DIFFERENT DIRECTION THAT I WANTED IT TO TAKE. THERES A SAYING I ALWAYS KEEP OVER MY DRAWING TABLE "ITS NEVER TO LATE TO BE WHAT YOU MIGHT HAVE BEEN "SO THATS TO ELVIS ,IVE BECOME WHAT I WANTED TO BE.