1. Harvey Milk, using milk.
Nathan has described Harvey as an 'icon' “I created this portrait of the American gay political activist using milk, simply because of his surname. Although my material choice may be somewhat humorous and obvious if you know my work, nobody can deny the impact Milk made in LGBTQ+ society and the wider community. Milk has become an icon, with numerous books and films made about his life. His most infamous quote being ‘If a bullet should enter my brain, let that bullet destroy every closet door’”.
2. Barack Obama, on a pride flag.
The former president of the US was painted onto the pride flag to honour the substantial positive changes he made for the LGBT+ community (Image: Nathan Wyburn) “In 2012 I recreated one of Obama’s most iconic campaign images directly onto a huge pride rainbow flag. During his time in office, he made many substantial steps forward for the community. Including legalising gay marriage, and the legislation to repeal Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, allowing gay, lesbian, and bisexual Americans to serve openly in the Armed Forces”.
3. Freddie Mercury, in red glitter.
The legendary front-man of Queen was honoured with red glitter to reflect his personal struggle with AIDS during the 80s “This portrait was created to auction at a fundraiser on World AIDS Day, for The Terrence Higgins Trust Cymru. I feel the red glitter is so powerful, beautiful and striking, yet extremely somber at the same time. Freddie Mercury, perhaps the greatest LGBTQ+ performer that ever lived, died in 1991 at age 45 due to complications from AIDS/HIV”.
4. H & Matt, ice rink painting.
Dancing on Ice's first same sex couple, Ian 'H' Watkins and Matt Evers “LGBTQ+ representation in TV and cinema is crucial to wider audience’s acceptance. A huge step forward this year in 2020 was Dancing On Ice’s same-sex pairing of Steps singer Ian H Watkins and pro skater Matt Evers. To celebrate this, I painted their portraits using ice rink paint, onto the Ice at the Viola arena in Cardiff. The couple did most of their training there too”.
5. Caitlyn Jenner, in lipstick kisses.
The reality star was presented with her painting at the Newport leg of her tour “Arguably the most famous Transgender person in the world, Caitlyn Jenner’s ‘Audience With’ show came to Newport’s ICC Wales this year. When thinking of what to create her likeness, her love for lipstick seemed quite fitting. It’s completed with kiss prints from my own lips too. She loved it too! The Q&A type show was a fascinating insight into her struggles and accomplishments before and since coming out as transgender”.
6. Olly Alexander, in rainbow glitter.
Nathan presented the piece to the Years & Years singer at Pride Cymru's 2016 event “During their set at Glastonbury, the Years & Years pop singer made a speech about LGBTQ+ and said to ‘shove a rainbow in fear’s face’ Which I absolutely loved, and turned into this portrait! Olly is very vocal on social media and is one of the loudest advocates for a generation”.
7. Madonna, using paintball pellets.
The singer is a strong ally for the LGBT+ community "This artwork, created by firing red paintball pellets out of a paintball gun, was inspired by her song God Control. The song and video are about the gun laws in the U.S and in particular the Pulse Nightclub mass shooting in Orlando, in which 49 members of the community lost their lives in a vicious homophobic attack”.
8. Ruby Rose, using pizza toppings.
The lesbian actor was honoured by a spicy pizza topping portrait “This was created for pure fun and because I was a huge fan of the Netflix series Orange Is The New Black! Ruby shared my Facebook post of its time lapse creation to her followers and sent the views over 2 million! It’s always awesome when people who I admire share my work, it’s that final stamp of approval... and who doesn’t like pizza?”
9. George Michael, using melted wham bars.
Nathan wanted to commemorate the singer's legacy “This is perhaps one of my favourite artworks I’ve ever made. George Michael in WHAM bars, of course, because he was in the pop group WHAM! George has an incredible legacy, which even continued after his untimely death on Christmas Day, with charitable work. This artwork is my fun way of celebrating the huge talent and the heart that he shared with the world, in my own unique way”.
10. RuPaul, using satay sauce.
The RuPaul's Drag Race host was made using satay sauce “In recent years, the art of drag has exploded! This is without a doubt, down to Rupaul’s Drag Race. Drag queens play a huge role in LGBTQ+ history and in the community today. When thinking of a material to paint RuPaul, I knew it needed to have that burst of humour, the drag queens encapsulate, so I’ve played on his famous line ‘shantay, you stay!’ and opted for satay ‘you stay’ sauce!”