Thursday, July 18, 2019

DPW Spotlight Interview: Jeff Strzelczyk

Each week we will spotlight a different DPW artist who will give away one of their best paintings. To enter to win Jeff's painting "Green Bug" go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing their interview.

From Jeff's DPW Page:

Hello Car Lovers. I am an amateur automotive artist using 100% acrylics on canvas. I love car design and found my calling with my Car Portraits and other Automotive art designs. I started out when I bought a Mustang early in 2018 and decided to paint it. From there it just took off and within 8 months have created over 100 individual paintings of all sizes. Most working off pictures from online but I do commission work for personal automobiles. I also have dabbling with movie cars and car chases to expand my portfolio. Thank you for viewing my works.

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

I'm a little different than a lot of artists on the site as I had only been painting for about six or seven years when I met my girlfriend who is also an artist. Before that I mainly did craft projects with paper and decorating old coffee tables using spray paint and stencils. I didn't realize that I could paint because I was never one to enjoy drawing. I started painting cars about a year and a half ago when I did my own car, then I just kept going.

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

For me painting is strictly a hobby. I'm a physical therapist by trade and still work full time, painting in the evenings and on weekends. There hasn't been any major stops along the way unless I need to step away for a few days. As long as people enjoy the cars I will keep painting.

Green Bug
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

As far as mediums I have only used acrylics. Oils are too messy and water colors don't allow me to get the straight lines I need for the cars. I started with just painting "car portraits" but have branched into painting race scenes, movie car chases, movie cars, etc. All my paintings with the exception of a few have some sort of automobile in them.

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

I do want to experiment with pours at some point and incorporate them into the car portraits. I think that would be fun.

Dream Road Trip
(click to view)

Who or what inspires you most?

Mustangs, Corvettes, GTOs, Challengers, VWs, etc. My girlfriend is my best inspiration and my best critic. Without her I wouldn't be painting.

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

Like I mentioned this is a hobby for me so when I feel like painting I paint. When I don't feel like it I do some of the other things I like to do like cycling, reading, puzzles. Of course there's the whole day job thing that keeps me busy as well.

Vintage Speed
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

I paint the cars I would love to drive someday. I'm also a huge movie buff so anything car related in the movies is fair game. Lately I have been finding ways to incorporate a car into whatever "Call to Artist" events come around in my area such as a Hippy Bus for a Woodstock theme or cars named after animals for a zoo animal event. I'm always up for a challenge and for the most part have no fear when I paint.

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

The nice thing about cars is that there are plenty of gearheads out there that love their four wheeled babies. I don't think that will ever change.

Let's Keep Going
(click to view)

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

Windshield wipers, headlights and tire treads are hard.

What makes you happiest about your art?

Seeing a classic car come to life on the canvas. Seeing people enjoy what I do. Enjoying that I have this ability.

Winter Sting
(click to view)

Thanks, Jeff!

© 2019 Sophie Marine

Thursday, July 11, 2019

DPW Spotlight Interview: Barbie Smith

Each week we will spotlight a different DPW artist who will give away one of their best paintings. To enter to win Barbie's painting "Still Standing" go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing their interview.

From Barbie's DPW Page:

A native of California, Barbie Smith is an oil painter whose love of color and beauty is reflected in her work. She finds inspiration in the endless wonder of God's creation and tries to reflect that beauty in her paintings. She looks for any subject with a strong design element including patterns of light and shadow or bold contrast of color or value. Her work is often described as that which evokes a sense of peacefulness and tranquility for the viewer. (click to read more)

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

Art has always been an important part of my life. Drawing was my favorite activity as a child and when I began college I had the opportunity to pursue an education in art. At that time we were encouraged to paint with Acrylics. I learned some of the fundamentals of painting and even painted some murals but eventually I decided to get my degree in nursing.

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

Raising my three children became my focus for many years. I served as art docent in their school and designed the sets for musical productions at our church but the desire to paint never left. I would wander through galleries and think to myself, “I could do this” but I really needed someone to get me started. I was actually wandering through a gallery when I met someone who would do just that. She was painting a demo and I was captivated by her beautiful work. I began to take lessons in oil painting and since then I have pursued art with a passion.

Still Standing
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

I was introduced to acrylics in my college years and they were great for mural painting. I took a few lessons in watercolor but fell in love with oils after my first lesson. I have tried water soluble oils for traveling but I prefer traditional oils. I have painted landscape, cityscape, coastal, animals and recently have begun to devote more time to still life. It is quite a challenge to choose and arrange the objects, decide on a color scheme and lighting and then paint from life. I also belong to several plein air groups.

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

Today I only paint with oils and still enjoy the many genres that I mentioned above. There are so many subjects that excite me and I like the freedom to explore and paint anything that inspires me.

Last Light at Point Lobos
(click to view)

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

The medium that I really want to explore next is gouache. From what I understand it is similar to both watercolor and acrylic having some of the characteristics of both. I have a brand new set of gouache and I’m looking forward to learning the techniques so I can have another option for plein air painting.

Who or what inspires you most?

The beauty of God’s creation is my inspiration and since I have become a painter my appreciation for nature and my surroundings has grown immensely. I especially love peaceful countryside landscapes, vineyards, and gardens, as well as the architecture of houses, buildings, fountains and statues. I am also inspired by the work of other artists and especially those who paint in an expressive, painterly style.

Together
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

Procrastination is something I struggle with every day as I watch precious hours slip away while repeatedly checking my phone or doing another google search. Having high expectations for my paintings keeps me from getting right to work but I am learning not to expect perfection. It doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful.

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

Approaching each new painting as practice rather than performance helps me to relax and enjoy the process. Getting to the easel as early as possible helps me to make time for painting. That way I don’t let other things steal my time and leave me feeling frustrated and defeated. If I paint early then I feel I have accomplished my purpose for the day and I like to set my finished painting in the kitchen so I can look at it while I am cooking or cleaning and feel a sense of satisfaction.

Victorian Charm
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

There is nothing more frustrating than to have the time to paint but no idea what to paint. Choosing what to paint the day before keeps me from wasting precious time. Keeping a photo file of my most inspirational photos can help me to avoid endless scrolling through years of images. Most of my ideas come from places that I have visited or sightseeing trips with my husband. I am very intentional when I visit an area about keeping my eyes open and my camera ready. Fortunately, my husband doesn’t mind pulling over or turning the car around so I can take pictures of the cows by the roadside or the light on the vineyards. I also like to paint on location as often as possible so I will scout the area and take photos before I begin. Painting isn’t always about finding the perfect scene or subject but about bringing out the hidden beauty that may not be obvious.

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

Keeping my art fresh means keeping it simple and not overworking it or adding more detail than it needs. It means putting the paint down intentionally and not second guessing my myself. Trying new techniques, studying other artists, taking workshops and visiting museums all help to bring new life to my art.

On Your Toes
(click to view)

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

Recently I have been learning to put more paint down and manipulate it as if I were sculpting with paint. This allows me to play with the paint and see what it can do instead of being fearful of making a mistake.

What makes you happiest about your art?

My art gives me something to look forward to every day. It takes my mind to a peaceful place where my focus is on beauty. There is never ending potential for growth and learning and great satisfaction when someone tells me how much they enjoy having my art in their home.

Thanks, Barbie!

© 2019 Sophie Marine

Thursday, July 4, 2019

DPW Spotlight Interview: Donna Theresa

Each week we will spotlight a different DPW artist who will give away one of their best paintings. To enter to win Donna's painting "Nuthatch" go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing their interview.

From Donna's DPW Page:


As an emerging artist, I am choosing to see my surroundings differently. Whereas before, I glimpsed at the face of my loved one or a stranger on the street, an everyday apple or pear, or the hazy hills in the distance; today I see shape, value, texture, movement, and thus emotion and narrative. I imagine how I might render these observations and then I practice... I do not surrender to the voice of comparison. I carry on in a spirit of curiosity and gratitude that I may find my way. On that journey, I ultimately find a part of myself undiscovered. (click to read more)

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

My passion for pastels started in a community college drawing class about three years ago. The instructor was introducing color using the pastel medium. I took one swipe of a chromatic orange stick and I remember thinking... "Now THIS is fun!" From there, I obsessively began learning online through Youtube tutorials from the best and most generous artists in our medium. I began entering exhibitions and getting accepted and it grew from there!

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

I paint daily... hence my membership in DPW! The only stops and starts in my budding painting career are a result of travel or other obligations.

Nuthatch
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

I have taken figure drawing classes using graphite and charcoal. I experiment with underpainting mediums like watercolor, acrylic inks, and clear gesso for creating texture. I started with landscape paintings, dabbled in some still life, and recently moved into figurative genre painting birds... I challenged myself to a personal "painting a day" in January 2019 and produced quite a collection of lovely little birds!

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

Of those mediums, I am still passionate about pastels. I exclusively paint in pastel. My genre passion is landscape depicting seasons and I am particularly fond of marshlands. Along with that, I am still painting birds.

At Peace
(click to view)

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

I would like to stretch myself into mixed media using collage and pastel someday. I am a representational artist with an impressionistic style... I would like to explore taking that into the expressionistic and abstract.

Who or what inspires you most?

Nature inspires me most. I am an avid bird watcher... an activity I share with my husband. I am constantly looking at the natural world around me and thinking to myself, "How could I render that?'

Joy
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

So I am one of the most industrious persons I know. Procrastination is not in my vocabulary! I have always been this way.

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

Staying organized in my personal life, managing the household (I have two adult children who live here while on break from college, and four cats!!) early in the day, practicing my piano before noon, eating a good lunch and then spending the afternoon in my studio with a good cup of coffee, listening to a book on tape or to classical music... That is my perfect day.

Poppy Abstract
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?


My ideas come from my observations of the natural world.  I study other artists that I admire and glean ideas from them. I participate in a small private art group where we have a weekly painting challenge on a particular subject or genre. I also love to look back at photos from our family travels around the world.

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

How do I keep my art fresh... I experiment with various underpainting techniques. I paint small and often. I often paint alla prima (all at once)... I have yet to burn out. You see, I am a retired nurse by profession, a mom of two adult college children, and this new passion is just that... NEW! I play piano, dance ballet, study french and have been known to perform improv comedy... nothing holds my attention like painting with pastels. At the easel or out in the field, I never think about anything except my next mark.

Evening Time
(click to view)

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

Right now I am learning to do only what I want to do... I am letting go of trying to make a business out of art making because I really don't enjoy that aspect of being an artist. I will promote my work and share my work in the manner that suits me, like posting to DPW, participating in national and international exhibitions, and being an Open Studio artist once a year here in lovely Santa Cruz, California. I am letting go of comparison and staying in the spirit of curiosity... which ultimately leads to my joy.

What makes you happiest about your art?

What makes me happiest about my art is the vibrant color that the pastel medium affords me!!! There is nothing more exciting than taking a stick of a luscious soft pastel stick and making a big bold mark on a fresh piece of sanded paper! Makes me giddy. :) I also, love to share my work with others because I want to share the joy of art making with everyone.

Thanks, Donna!

© 2019 Sophie Marine

Thursday, June 27, 2019

DPW Spotlight Interview: Alice Harpel

Each week we will spotlight a different DPW artist who will give away one of their best paintings. To enter to win Alice's painting "Acrylic spring tulip floral painting impressionism" go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing their interview.

From Alice's DPW Page:


I am a fine artist residing in Crawfordsville, IN. Upon retirement from the Indiana Department of Education, I have created a second career in the fine arts.

Most of my artwork originates from my original photographs, my plein air experiences, and my memory. I paint primarily in oils, acrylics, and pastels and often introduce other elements, such as collage paper, to achieve my desired vibrant colors and texture. (click to read more)

Tell us about how you first started painting.

As a young child and like many artists, I loved art and being creative. Living in the country next to a very small town, art was my entertainment. When I was first married, my husband was convinced he saw talent in the drawings that I would do in my spare time. So, he quickly went out and purchased my first set of art supplies. And that was the beginning of being a self-taught artist.

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

As stated earlier, my start really was when my husband “invested” in all those “bright, new, shiny” art supplies. So convinced of my talent that he was also a willing partner to take some of my paintings to art shows for me when I was “unsure” of this new thing I was doing.

My stops have been the raising of our two children and returning to a teaching career (but not as an art teacher) which then led me to go onto earning a Doctorate in Educational Administration. At that point, I put away my paints and brushes for 35+ years later, only to return to them upon retirement. And about a month before retirement, I ordered $1000 worth of art supplies from websites, and anxiously waited to return to my passion.

Acrylic spring tulip floral painting impressionism
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

When I first returned to painting, I worked in watercolor, but once I started to work more with acrylics, I became spoiled. My most recent medium for experimentation has been soft pastels.

The genres that I have experimented with are abstract work and painting figures (little girl ballerinas).

Which ones have “ stuck” and which ones have fallen away?

I no longer do watercolor unless it works as an underpainting for pastels. Acrylics have spoiled me there. I still play with abstracts and create “little girl” ballerina paintings, along with my traditional landscapes and florals.

Sunflower still life acrylic bouquet floral art
(click to view)

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

I would like to explore a looser style with my pastels. And I would also like to see how I can combine my acrylics with pastels with my abstract work.

Who or what inspires you most?

Besides the local artists who have made it to the national level, there are several I follow on the Internet. To name a few: Tom Christopher (pastels), Roger Dale Brown (oils), Jill Carver (oils), Nancy Franke (oils).

Oil red barn winter landscape painting
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

Procrastination---cleaning my studio, cleaning my home,  looking through old art books.

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

I frequently do an early morning walk where I can clear my mind to focus on the day. I also create a “mind map” at the beginning of each year and refer to it monthly. This pushes me to make time for all aspects of my art.

Sunflower floral flower garden acrylic painting
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

Since I live in a rural community, all I need to do is drive down a country road—nothing else is needed. All the beautiful colors that Mother Nature “paints” on her flowers always leads me to creating new floral art. I will enter competitions that have a theme that forces me to think of ideas for new paintings.

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

I like experimenting with new colors and techniques---pushing myself to loosen my style. Even though the initial endeavor might not be successful, the process always leads me to new ideas over time.

Wildflower day lily stream creek meadow painting
(click to view)

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

I am analyzing how my pastel painting techniques can help me be a better oil/acrylic artist. I want to see how these pastel ideas can translate to another medium.

What makes you happiest about your art?

I love the process of creating. I also get satisfaction when I “redo” an earlier painting. It is in this process that I can see the techniques I have learned over time that now makes this current work a better piece.

Thanks, Alice!

© 2019 Sophie Marine

Thursday, June 20, 2019

DPW Spotlight Interview: Heather Douglas

Each week we will spotlight a different DPW artist who will give away one of their best paintings. To enter to win Heather's painting "Fire Escape NYC #2" go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing their interview.

From Heather's DPW Page:

Heather Leigh Douglas began her artistic career in oil painting and has expanded into the encaustic process as well. While her oil paintings are highly realistic her encaustics often take on a freer approach.

Douglas has exhibited in national and international juried shows across the country including galleries and museums. She has had solo shows in the New York Metropolitan area of both her oil paintings and encaustics. Some of her pieces have been used in films and television commercials. (click to read more)

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

I must begin by saying that, like a lot of artists, I have always been involved in one artistic endeavor or another, with lots of experimenting. As a studio art major in college I studied a variety of techniques which included oil painting. I also learned batik but used the process to create landscapes. After college I began taking classes in photography and eventually set up my own black and white darkroom. Oil painting was something I pursued on and off while creating and selling my batik landscapes.

Fire Escape NYC #2
(click to view)

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

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

When I had my first of three daughters, I put aside painting and batiks and focused primarily on photography. This along with a bit of watercolor painting became my artistic outlet for the next nineteen years. When a friend wanted to buy a painting of my daughter’s, which she refused to sell, I set up an easel and did an oil painting for him. I had forgotten the joy that comes from painting and suddenly I couldn’t get enough of it!

Spring Beauty
(click to view)

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?


One day, ten years ago, I came across an encaustic in an art exhibit and was fascinated. I began trying to learn the technique, which very few people seemed to know about then. The beauty of encaustic for me is that it combines three of my favorite artistic methods. Encaustic uses melted wax, which I had used in my batik days, and oil paint, which is used to color the wax. The medium is so versatile that it also allows me to use my black and white photography to create toner transfers into the wax.

Black Fern
(click to view)

Which ones have "stuck" and which ones have fallen away? Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

I no longer use a darkroom. My primary focus has become encaustic, although I’ve just begun to experiment with cold wax and oil paint, which I am really enjoying. I also plan to create a series of encaustic monoprints on paper, and perhaps some other forms of print making down the road.

Fire Escape NYC - M2
(click to view)

Who or what inspires you most?

My inspiration comes from the world around me. I am a nature girl who loves the ocean, hiking, woods and gardens, but I’m also drawn to architecture and the energy of metropolitan cities. I always seem to get a boost after going to a museum exhibit or a gallery show. Just seeing what other artists are creating is always inspirational.

What does procrastination look like for you?

Procrastination is such a dirty word and I know it well! Much as I love the computer and all it has to offer, it can take over if I’m not diligent. Of course there are a host of other things that love to play procrastinator too.

Red Purse
(click to view)

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

I begin each day by tackling whatever errands and appointments must be taken care of in the morning. My reward is spending the afternoon (and often into the evenings), working in the studio without the distraction of other things on the “to do” list.

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

A majority of ideas stem from my photography. I often go on photographic excursions with the sole purpose of gathering material to paint. I also use patterns I find in nature (such as rocks, wood, seaweed, etc.) to create more abstract pieces.

Maine Stone #5
(click to view)

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

I find travel to be a wonderful stimulus for creating “fresh” work.  Often times however, just going to a different part of New York City (I live nearby), opens me up to new ideas.

What makes you happiest about your art?   

I am so grateful to have something that I have loved doing all my life and that I can continue to do, till the end of my days!

Thanks, Heather!

© 2019 Sophie Marine

Thursday, June 13, 2019

DPW Spotlight Interview: Elaine Hahn

Each week we will spotlight a different DPW artist who will give away one of their best paintings. To enter to win Elaine's painting "River View" go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing their interview.

From Elaine's DPW Page:

Elaine Hahn, a native of Kansas City, Missouri, holds a BA and MA in Art from the University of Missouri, and has studied with noted artists throughout the United States, England and Mexico. Her early career was influenced by her experience at Hallmark Cards in Kansas City. She is a Signature member of the Paint America Association Signature Society, the Florida Plein Air Society, a member of the Oil Painters of America, the American Impressionist Society, and is a Signature member of the American Watercolor and the National Watercolor Societies. (click to read more)

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

I loved drawing at a very young age. My mother would put me in classes at the Kansas City Art Museum for kids in the summer. I went on from there to study art and get my degrees in art.

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

I was a Marine Corps wife and moved every three years. That made many starts and stops for twenty years.

River View
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you worked with and which have stuck and which have fallen away?

In school I tried most every medium from print making to encaustic wax painting. This was good because I knew I favored drawing and painting. I chose oil painting at first. A group of artists in Virginia, where I lived then, started an Art Co-Op where we taught classes and on the main floor had a gallery. That group still exists in Occaquan, Va. I was teaching print making and pastels at the time. The Watercolor artist left, and my students asked me to teach Watercolors. I had just seen a watercolor demo by the famous artist, John Pike, while attending a pastel workshop and he made it look so easy. I said I would try!! That started my twenty year journey with Watercolors.

Bushels of Crabs
(click to view)

Who inspired you the most?

I’ve taken workshops from many artists and was inspired by them all. Albert Handel and Kevin MacPherson were two of my favorites. I also really admire Richard Schmid and have learned a lot from just reading his books.

Feeding Time
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

I’m great at this!! I read the book The War of Art by Steven Pressfield and had to laugh. I fit right in!  A great book on how to deal with procrastination for artists.

Hull Reflections
(click to view)

How have you dealt with burn out in your career?

After spending my twenty years in Watercolors, I felt I needed a change, as I was getting burned out. It was a big one!! - back to Oils and painting Plein Air. At that point, I needed to get out of the studio, experiment and also try a different medium while painting outdoors. I loved it and did many Plein Air events and saw a lot of beautiful places where I painted.

Then after several years, I came full circle back to the studio, still working in oils but, doing Still Lifes instead of landscapes. It was at this time I found Daily Paintworks. This really helped motivate me to do a painting a day for many months. I really know that this challenge was a big help for me. Often times now when I feel stuck I go back to that challenge of a painting a day. All artists should all be very thankful for this Daily Paintworks site.

Sparkle
(click to view)

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

Now I am motivated by doing paintings that I feel are worthy of entering into national shows. Subject matter is usually coastal oriented (we live on the water in Florida) or Still Lifes.

Sunset Glow
(click to view)

What makes you happiest about your art?

When I paint for hours and time flies and everything goes amazingly right. I wish more moments like this happened. Also, when someone appreciates my paintings or loves them enough to buy it.

Thanks, Elaine!

© 2019 Sophie Marine

Thursday, June 6, 2019

DPW Spotlight Interview: Gina Garding

Each week we will spotlight a different DPW artist who will give away one of their best paintings. To enter to win Gina's painting "Duck Reflections" go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing their interview.

From Gina's DPW Page:

Hello! I am a Minneapolis-based painter. I've been painting for about 5 years and learn something new every time I'm at the easel. I love keeping it fresh by painting a wide variety of things, but I'd have to say my favorite subject is pet portraits. You can see more of my work on my blog (www.ginagarding.blogspot.com), or follow me on instagram (@ggardingart). Thanks for stopping by!

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

I always loved to draw and was a very creative and crafty kid, and about five years ago my mom urged me to take a painting class to balance out my left-brained job as a statistical programmer. Fortunately for me my first class was with Kat Corrigan, and her excitement and passion for painting was super contagious and got me hooked!

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

I’ve had periods where life got busy and I got out of the habit for a while, but in the last couple years I’ve been more consistent and the stops are shorter and less frequent.

Duck Reflections
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

I paint with acrylic, and have a couple hours under my belt experimenting with water-based oils.

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

I’d love to learn oils, and I plan to keep trying those. I would also really love to try gouache sometime, I love the look of it and I’ve heard it’s quite opaque in nature and that suits me well for how I paint.

Focus 2
(click to view)

Who or what inspires you most?

I was very inspired to try painting pet portraits by Kat Corrigan. I don’t know a lot of art history, so my other inspirations tend to be current artists that I follow on social media. I love the work of Teddi Parker, Patty Voje, Sharon Shock, Cathleen Rehfield, Holly Storlie, Katya Minkina, Robin Rosenthal, and there are so many more…

What does procrastination look like for you?

Getting inside my head too much! Sometimes anxiety sets in, that I don’t have enough time to paint something the way it “should” be painted, so instead I leaf through reference photo ideas or spend time looking at others’ works.

Koi
(click to view)

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

Refer to previous question - it’s not usually an issue of enough hours in the day for me, so much as it is getting out of my own head thinking that I need more time. The one post-it note I have taped to my easel says “Don’t think, just paint!”.  I try to set a goal of touching paint to canvas even for 20 minutes, and it often turns into longer than that.

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

I often paint from reference photos, and there’s a great website Paint My Photo.com that I love to peruse. It’s kind of like a thrift store, in that you never know what you’ll find and there are some real gems. I also do pet commissions so those are kind of decided for me.

Ready for My Close-up
(click to view)

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

I keep it fresh by painting what most excites me at the moment. I’d love to do a series, but I’ve found if my excitement of the subject wanes it really affects my painting. The things I paint usually have no connection to each other -  it’s how my brain works! I’ve found having a large file of potential reference photos helps avoid burnout, because there’s always something that I’ll find new and exciting.

Callie 10
(click to view)

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

Sticking with paintings through the rough patches. Sometimes a painting just needs to be abandoned and I’m ok with that, but I’ve had some good successes by working through the “ugly” and coming out the other side. Also, patience with myself. I go through phases where my mind sees how I want something to look but my hands can’t do it yet – it’s frustrating but remembering that practice is a part of it helps.

Thanks, Gina!

© 2019 Sophie Marine

Thursday, May 30, 2019

DPW Spotlight Interview: Esperanza Deese

Each week we will spotlight a different DPW artist who will give away one of their best paintings. To enter to win Esperanza's painting "Three and One" go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing their interview.

From Esperanza’s DPW Page:


My journey into art started late. I graduated with a degree in Accounting, licensed as a CPA, and have been in the accounting profession for over twenty years now. Most of you have probably worked with an accountant before, so you can imagine how my life in that field is pretty much black and white. Painting changed all that. I do not have formal training in the fine arts, but God gifted me a couple of years ago to depict the beauty of His creation into canvas with paint and brush.

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

What always puzzled me is how my camera does not capture how I see a scenery, like how the ocean looks so big but when you take a picture of it, so little of the water shows up. I’ve always wished I could paint what I see but with no painting background, it was just a wish. Then in 2016, I found Carol Marine’s book “Daily Painting” which sparked my desire to learn how to paint. In the book, she featured Dreama Tolle Perry whom I googled and found out was offering an online art course. I signed up in September 2016, and by following her video instructions, I learned to paint with oils. It gave me so much joy to finally be able put my vision onto canvas. But I didn’t paint regularly until I joined the 30 Paintings in 30 Days challenge in Feb 2018. A few days into it, the Lord prompted me to put a bible verse with each of the paintings I posted. Amazingly, I was able to finish 23 paintings during that period, and I saw so much growth as an artist from each painting.

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

Having a full-time job as an accountant with all its busy seasons, my painting was always being put on hold. And life happens – a marriage proposal in November and the subsequent preparations for the wedding in February put my painting career on hold again. But with God’s grace and my dear husband’s support, I was able to scale down on my accounting job so that I now have more time to dedicate to painting.

Three and One
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

I paint whatever inspires me, so I experiment with various genres. My favorites are seascapes, nature, floral and still life.

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

When I first started painting, I used acrylics. Then with Dreama’s class, I shifted to oils, loved it and stuck with it.

Foster Care
(click to view)

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

I was inspired to paint my then fiancee now husband. It was the first portrait painting I’ve done and I really loved the experience so I’m looking forward to exploring more portrait and figurative painting. More people and their activities.

Who or what inspires you most?

The words of our Lord. The bible is His love letter to us. It’s where I turn to when I need advice, comfort, inspiration... anything!

Peace
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

Reorganizing instead of painting!

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

I tell myself that I’m free to do whatever I wanted as long as I get one painting done, so better get on it as soon as possible. Then usually, by the time I finish one painting, I would be so “in the zone” that if time permitted, I do another one...and then another.

Sunflower Wedding Bouquet
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

I stop to really look at and enjoy sceneries, nature, people, inanimate things that catch my interest. I take lots of pictures.

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

I paint a variety of subjects so there’s always the challenge of  learning to paint something new. To avoid burnout, I have this in my heart - Psalm 23: “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul.”

Jar of Love
(click to view)

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

Marketing and promoting my artwork.

What makes you happiest about your art?

With no background in art and now able to create beautiful paintings, I know this is a gift from God.  When someone tells me that my painting made them happy, it makes me happy. But when someone says the bible verse I shared with the painting spoke to them...oh joy...HEART BE STILL.

Thanks, Esperanza!

© 2019 Sophie Marine