Thursday, May 29, 2014

DPW Spotlight Interview: Jennifer Beaudet

Each week we will spotlight a different DPW artist who will give away one of their best paintings.

To enter to win Jennifer's painting, "Symphony for Spring" go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing their interview.

From Jennifer's DPW Gallery page:

I grew up by the beach, in beautiful Southern California, and now live in the mountains of Northern California. My inspiration comes from the beauty that surrounds me. I paint mostly in oils with an occasional watercolor and like to keep my paintings loose and painterly. I'm primarily self-taught in oils, but also earned my degree in Studio Art quite a few years ago. Life took me on a different journey, but I'm happy to finally be living my dream creating art.

My work is currently on display at Fringe in Redondo Beach, CA, Weaverville, CA and in private collections around the world, from Australia to Japan, Canada, Paris and all over the United States.

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

Like so many artists, I've been an artist as far back as I can remember (sometimes that's not that far! haha). It wasn't until my daughter was about to enter college that I decided I couldn't wait any longer to express myself through paint!

When I stumbled upon the original dally paintings site, I was so inspired. Seeing other artists actually making money from their art, inspired me to immediately set up a blog and start painting. My blog was called, "My Life As a Starving Artist" and is no longer called that because I'm no longer starving! I was never really starving from hunger, it was the urge inside me to create that had been put on hold for so long. I was raising my daughter on my own and had no idea how to make enough through my art. She's all grown up and lives away now, so I have been able to put everything into creating art!

Symphony of Spring
(click to see original image)

Enter to win by clicking on the link at the top of the home page announcing Jennifer's interview.

Did you have any stops and starts in your painting career?

Yes, for most of my life, my art was put on hold while I raised my daughter as a single mom. It wasn't until about five years ago that I really started painting daily, well almost every day. If I'm not painting, I'm doing something having to do with my art business -- 24/7 it seems! But I'm not complaining, I love what I do!

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

I use mostly oils, but used to use watercolors years ago. I also experiment with acrylics now and then, but get frustrated and go back to oils. I haven't been able to get the same look and feel as I can with oils, and they dry so fast, so I'm sticking with oils. As far as genre, I love vintage fashions and have done several paintings of vintage ladies and just beautiful dresses in general. I'm also very passionate about Hawaii and dream about living there someday. So painting it is the next best thing! I also do other landscapes of beautiful places that either I've been, or a relative has been. I always tell them to take lots of photos for me.

Birch Tree Challenge
(click to see original image)

Which ones have "stuck" and which ones have fallen away?

I would say, my watercolors haven't stuck. I don't use them very often anymore and when I do I end up using them in a very organic way, just letting it "happen".

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

I definitely want to focus more on figures. I had two semester of life drawing when I first started college, right out of high school. That was quite sometime ago now so I'd really like to refresh my skills by painting more figures. But, I live in a very small town and haven't found a life drawing class yet. Finding a model is the hard part. I've had my daughter pose for reference photos but since she doesn't live at home anymore having her sit is not possible.

Dance of the Tulip
(click to see original image)

Who or what inspires you most?

I'm inspired by beauty, but that's kind of vague. I think it's the color and light that certain objects and scenes possess that intrigue me the most. Even in folds of fabric (which I love painting) it's the form created by the light that attracts me. In a landscape, it's the light and atmosphere of a scene that inspires me, but I always love to add extra punches of color with beautiful flowers, which I love as well! This is a hard question. So many things inspire me, like learning and discovering new ways to paint! That really inspires me!

What does procrastination look like for you?

Me on my computer, sunning outside, talking on the phone, then back to my computer.

What techniques work to ensure that you make time for your art?

I try to have a routine, but don't always stick to it! I like to spend mornings doing computer related social media, promoting tasks. After that, I should just put the computer (and my phone) away, so I don't get distracted. I would probably get a lot more done! I do errands and try to make it to the gym, so I start painting around 2:00 and usually stop around 7:00.

Redondo Beach Pier
(click to see original image)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

It might be something I see in my daily life that gives me an idea or some place that I've been. I just took a trip to L.A. and drove home up the coast. I took a ton of photos, so I might get a few out of that. Some of my paintings are commissions, so it's someone else's idea and my vision combined. Those are always fun to do.

How do you keep art "fresh?" What techniques have helped you avoid burnout and keep your work vibrant and engaging?

I don't know if it's "fresh" or not, but I'm always learning new things by reading books, browsing the Internet, and taking a few online workshops. So I feel my work is always improving. I haven't yet experienced burnout and hope I don't ever get there, but if I do I think traveling somewhere new or maybe taking a new workshop might help.

Anemone Botanical
(click to see original image)

What do you feel you are learning about right now as an artist?

I feel like I'm always learning about everything! Color, light, value, you name it, I'm learning and practicing. I can't really say one particular thing that I'm learning, except that I've always worked on small and medium size canvases and have recently received two different commissions for very large, as in 30x60 inch canvas! So I've been learning about getting the same feel with this size as I do with the smaller pieces.

What makes you happiest about your art?

I feel such a sense of accomplishment when I finish a piece. It's a great feeling and I'm not going to lie, I love when someone likes my art enough to buy it and display it in their home! I've also been able to donate my art for several causes. That makes me very happy! I just love everything about painting and am grateful to be able to do it.

Thanks, Jennifer!

© 2014 Sophie Catalina Marine Cruse

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