Thursday, June 4, 2015

DPW Spotlight Interview: Patty Voje

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

To enter to win Patty's painting, "Summer Chicken" go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing their interview.

From Patty's DPW Gallery Page:

I grew up on a small hobby farm in rural Cottage Grove, Minnesota, where I developed a love for farm animals and nature - two of my favorite subjects to paint. My real job is Creative Director and President of Spot Communications. I like spending my free time "unplugged", oil painting as often as possible. In an effort to become a better painter in 2015, I'm challenging myself to crank out 200 paintings, which I'm finding is no small feat while holding down a full-time job, but I'm determined. :) (click to view bio)

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

I've always loved art. I have an amazingly bad painting of Elton John that I did in 7th grade, :)

Summer Chicken
(click to see original image)

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

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

I've never allowed myself to consider art as a career. I took the more practical path of "designer". After art school, I got a job in advertising and pretty much walked away from fine art until my late thirties. Then I'd get too busy with work and take more time off. A few years ago, I finally returned and currently I'm painting more than I ever have before. Though I work full time, I'm determined to become a better painter, and the only way I can do that is to churn out a ton of paintings. So, that's what I've been doing - painting every day.

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

I tried watercolor but found it too unforgiving. I've also tried acrylic, but really prefer the buttery feel of oil painting. I also flunked a pottery class once.

Agnes
(click to see original image)

What are you looking forward to exploring?

I really admire painters that have mastered architecture. I'd love to be able to take on more complex compositions. I have a painting trip to Italy planned for next fall, I'm hoping to work on my street scenes skills before I go!

Who or what inspires you most? 

I've always been inspired by artists such as Edward Hopper, John Singer Sargent and Anders Zorn. I also have to add Rosa Bonheur to that list - that lady could really paint farm animals! Which brings me to farm animals. I grew up on a hobby farm and farm animals will always have a special place in my heart. That explains why so many cows make their way onto my canvas.

I'm also inspired everyday by the art I see on Daily Paintworks. There's a lot of amazing talent out there and I love to bask in the genius of others. Lastly, I have to say, my mother. I'm the youngest of nine kids. My mother used to set up her small metal easel and tackle a painting with 9 kids under foot. My memory of her is a constant reminder that I'm capable of accomplishing more in a day than I think I can. :)

Don't Fence Me In
(click to see original image)

What does procrastination look like for you?

I don't procrastinate when it comes to painting, I have just a small window everyday to paint. I look forward to it too much. I never take that time for granted.

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

I read the book "Daily Rituals of Artists" and realized that most people just need 2 to 3 hours a day to really accomplish their artistic goals. I've also given up housework and TV, that frees up a wealth of time!

Princess Crabby Pants
(click to see original image)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

My paintings are either done on location or from photos that I have taken, so I take a lot of photos. I'm always on the lookout for a handsome herd of cows, a rolling hill or fresh bouquet.

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

I still consider myself new at this, so I'm always looking at different colors, brushwork and technique. I read a lot of art books, there's always new methods to try. My favorite is Alla Prima by Richard Schmid, not a cheap book to pick up, but worth every penny.

Puppy Love
(click to see original image)

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

After studying with teachers the past few years, I currently find myself, quite horrifyingly, learning on my own. I feel like I've taken off the training wheels and am learning to trust myself to build on what I've learned, incorporate what works for me and see what rules I can break. The Daily Paintworks site has been an immense help and source of inspiration for me.  I love seeing what others are doing. I love reading about their process. I also appreciate the feedback I've received on my work. It keeps me motivated. There's so much to learn, I'll never be done!

What makes you happiest about your art?

I love the process. I'm happiest painting. Sometimes paintings work, sometimes they don't, but the process of painting is definitely my happy place. :) I also love hearing from people who have purchased a painting. A woman who recently purchased a lilac painting shared a story of why lilacs mattered to her. It was a lovely note and made my day. It's wonderful to know your art is appreciated.

Thanks, Patty!

© 2015 Sophie Catalina Marine

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