Thursday, January 24, 2013

DPW Spotlight Interview: Vincenza Harrity

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

To enter to win Vincenza Harrity's painting, "Barn at Wolf Creek," go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing her interview.

From Vincenza's DPW Gallery page:
Formally trained in fashion illustration, Vincenza has always sought to develop her skills as a painter with classes and workshops. For more than 10 years, she has focused on still lifes and en plein air landscapes using oils. Her work has been displayed and sold in galleries and exhibitions throughout Ohio and Kentucky.
Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

I was always interested in art, fashion and painting, even as a child. I have a background in fashion illustration and after raising my children it was time for me to get back to art. I started painting and I haven’t stopped.

Barn at Wolf Creek
(click here to see original image)

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

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

Having moved a few times, I have had to stop and restart. Painting has been a way for me to reach out to the community. I sought out teachers at the art museum and local art clubs. All of those opportunities opened new doors to artists, ideas and growth in my art journey.

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?

I started painting in oil and pretty much have stayed there. I did have a brief season of painting with acrylic, but found it harder to mix to get the colors I was looking for. For a long time, I painted on stretch canvas, but once I started painting “en plein air,” I went to panels and love it. In time I’d like to try oil pastels.

Autumn Reflects
(click here to see original image)

Your beautiful paintings make me feel like I'm taking a peaceful walk out in the country. What feeling are you hoping to inspire in your viewers?

Thank you, I’m glad it evokes a feeling like that for you. I would say it is my desire that the viewer feels some emotion when they look at my work. I am inspired by the world around me and want to pass that on to the art lover, whether it is a nostalgic, peaceful or moody feeling.

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

I get easily distracted with household chores, going out and playing my ukulele. One of my other passions is cooking, so I can get wrapped up in making dinner or cleaning; I like a neat house. What works for me is a plan! This way everything gets its due, including my art, and I try to keep it all in balance.

Moon Rising Over Route 71
(click here to see original image)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

In my travels, I snap a lot of pictures and I get outside to paint as often as possible. Nature inspires my awe. I also spend time visiting museums, looking at what other artists are doing.

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

Due to other commitments in my life, I'm allowed to step back from my work, gain perspective and look at my art with fresh eyes. I also have a wonderful group of artist friends that keep me motivated, making me want to be better.

Afternoon Winter
(click here to see original image)

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

I’m learning to paint softer, with more muted shades and less hard edges. I had an opportunity recently to view some of George Inness’s paintings and was overwhelmed by his ability to paint things in a way that reads like it is there, but in such a subtle way. I’m also thinking about going back to a limited palette, especially when painting plein air, maybe using Prussian blue, instead of Ultramarine.

Spicy Lamb Path
(click here to see original image)

What makes you happiest about your art?

I think that when you are an artist whether you paint, write, play an instrument or shoot a camera, we all need to respond to the world around us. I’m happy to be able to express the beauty I see around me, to be part of creation in some small way.

Thanks, Vincenza!

© 2013 Jennifer Newcomb Marine


  1. As someone who is lucky enough to know this artist in life, I can tell you Vinnie is an amazing person! She battles OH snow and wind to make many of her paintings. She tirelessly attends art events and workshops--She's an avid student of life with diverse interests --All of which goes into her work. Wonderful interview!!

  2. I commissioned Vinnie to paint 4 landscapes from photos I had of my homeland. When I saw them, they brought tears to my eyes. While staying true to the subject, Vinnie was able to interpret and enliven the scenes. I am so pleased with her work.

  3. Vinnie puts a piece of herself into everything she does. Her talents are numerous and her energy boundless! You go, girl!

  4. Nicely put, Vinnie! Your works, your words, and your life are so consistant and true and beautiful. Keep up the great work!