Thursday, November 8, 2012

DPW Spotlight Interview: Parastoo Ganjei

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

To enter to win Parastoo Ganjei's painting, Catching the Light, go to go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing her interview.

From Parastoo's DPW gallery page:
As well as exhibiting in many galleries around the United Kingdom, the USA and Europe, Parastoo has sold her original paintings into private collections all over the world.
Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

I started painting at a very early age. My grandfather's art had a big influence on me. He was a great painter and his studio was my favourite place with all sorts of beautiful objects to paint from. Every week, my grandfather asked me to show him my new paintings and I loved to hear his opinion about my art. Today I feel the same excitement and happiness when I create a new painting.

Catching the Light
(click here to see original image)

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

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

I have been painting all my life. From childhood, I wanted to be an artist and in spite of my parent's persuasion to study medicine, I studied art at the university for four years, exploring fine arts, sculpture and graphic design. Later, I studied animation and illustration, but my real love for painting made me become an artist.

What mediums and genres have you experimented with? Which ones have "stuck" and which ones have fallen away? Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

While studying at the university, we experimented with lots of mediums and techniques including watercolour, oil, pen and ink, gouache and charcoal. I liked the watercolour and gouache. Later on, I discovered acrylic paints and I found them to be very flexible with such a wide range of vibrant colours, so I carried on painting with them. If I decide to choose another medium I will go for oil.

(click here to see original image)

Your dreamy, otherworldly landscapes and luxurious flowers seem to conjure up a particular kind of slow-paced life. What can you tell us about the feeling you want your paintings to convey?

Thank you for your lovely comments. I used to live in London for a long time, a very large and busy city. We moved to a much smaller seaside city on the south coast of the country where I had my first garden. I was entertained by the birds singing on our pear trees and had occasional visits by the foxes. The sea breeze and the noisy seagulls were the constant reminders of living near the sea.

When we moved to the country, it felt as I had awakened from a very long and deep sleep. Living so close to nature showed me that the flights of my imagination were limited to scenes around my backyard and now I can zoom into galactic distances to create a new world.

(click here to see original image)

I paint my immediate surroundings and no matter how faithfully I render, it will not carry the power to convince if my painting is not presenting a fertile imagination. My remembered, or rather invented, landscapes are more alive than paintings I used to do on the spot. Now I think it is not faithfulness to the scene before me that presents the sense of reality; it is my inner consciousness and my feelings which gives life to my paintings.

I want my painting to convey my sense of gratitude and love for life.

What does procrastination look like for you? What techniques work to ensure that you make time for your art?

My art has a very important role in my life. I paint most days and I like to be honest and genuine towards my paintings, so I only paint when I have the desire to paint.

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

At the moment the deep reds and oranges of late Autumn are laying on the grounds of our valley and evergreen pines on their guards against the dramatic sky are so stunning. When winter arrives in thick snow to cover the rugged farmlands and downpours ripple the Wylye River, I will have lots of ideas to paint from. I usually arrive at my idea for a new painting while driving through the country lanes.

Shades of Fall
(click here to see original image)

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

Where I live is a beautiful and engaging part of the world and painting nature not only has given me the chance to practice the most enviable career as a painter, it has taught me so much about life and how resilient and intelligent nature is.

I love to portray atmosphere and movement in both my floral and landscape paintings. My brushwork is loose and I paint fast. I love colours and I use a lot of shades and hues in my paintings.

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

As an artist I like to think that I am learning all the time. I like to observe my surroundings with less emphasis on details and to portray more feelings and emotions in my painting.

Happy to Be Here
(click here to see original image)

What makes you happiest about your art?

The fact that I am able to paint and show my paintings to the world makes me very happy.

Thanks, Parastoo!

© 2012 Jennifer Newcomb Marine

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