Thursday, April 9, 2015

DPW Spotlight Interview: Linda Hunt

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

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

From Linda's DPW Gallery Page:

My name is Linda Hunt and I am a painter. I love to paint focusing my attention on light and color. I paint common things in my environment and love to challenge myself to paint almost everyday. My style of painting would be termed abstract realism. I paint quickly and energetically working wet into wet paint. (click to view bio)

Tell us a bit about how your first started painting.

Like many artists, I began painting and drawing in my childhood. I did take art lessons as a child at the Portland Oregon Museum Art School . I remember the feeling and the smell of those class rooms and the joy that I felt. Later in my undergraduate studies, my emphasis was in drawing and sculpture.

When I was in graduate school, my focus shifted to abstract expressionist drawing and painting, but my emphasis was still sculpture. I painted and made mixed media collaged paintings, drawings, and assemblages for many years after graduating. In 1988, I began to have an interest in painting from life in oil paints. I began to paint interior spaces that were comprised of more or less collaged images that I painted from life, incorporating them into believable room settings. My work has always merged abstraction with the representational.

Red Wedges
(click to see original image)

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

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

When my son was young, I didn't paint as much and there was about a ten year lapse in creating. In 1978, I went back to school, majoring in Fine Art. I have been creating and painting since that time. I studied for the next eight or nine years as a single working parent and student while obtaining three degrees in art. It is a funny thing because my real education came after school while struggling on my own to learn what I didn't learn in college.

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

During the 1990's, I began to produce small assemblage interior wearable art pins that were exhibited and carried by many museum art shops throughout the United States. As an example, I sold my pins at the Smithsonian Renwick Gallery in Washington DC. They were so much fun to create. I used shrinky dink art material to fill each interior space with furniture and vases of flowers that I cut and shrunk and then painted with oil paints. In early 2000, I began painting strictly from life and after taking a workshop from Carol Marine in 2008, I started to paint on a daily basis.

Lately, I have been experimenting with gouache which, to me, is much like oil paint. I love the velvety texture and am looking forward to pursuing my studies with this medium in the future. I also enjoy pastel and drawing in charcoal. I love oil paints and that is my main medium of choice.

(click to see original image)

What inspires you most?

I am constantly looking at art so I have so many artists that I find inspirational. I recently purchased a DVD by artist Lori Putnam and am finding many tips and ideas to incorporate in my own work. I am always looking back at some of my favorite artists such as Manet, Van Gogh, Sorolla, Anders Zorn to name a few. I love to look at art and let it infuse my soul.

I would say that what inspires me is light: light falling on objects and creating patterns and shadows. The tactile quality of oil paint and its beautiful sheen always excites my senses.

Still Life #7
(click to see original image)

What does procrastination look like to you?

Procrastination is something that I fight each and every day. It takes a lot of energy to keep and run a household and paint. I make sure that I paint almost every day even if it is something small. I usually work out, run errands, and take care of my two Golden Retreiver Dogs in the morning. In the afternoon, I go to my studio and begin to work. I also like to paint in the evening after my husband and dogs are bedded down for the night. I enjoy the quiet solitude of night working until I am too tired to paint any further.

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

I make sure that I show up in my studio each day. I love the quote that I believe is from Picasso "Inspiration can only come if it finds you working."

(click to see original image)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

My surroundings are inspiration for subject matter in my paintings. I work mostly from life, although there are times when a photograph makes more sense. I would love to plein air paint, but I have not spent time doing this, so my landscapes are done from photos that I take. My hobby is to frequent my beloved thrift stores and look for items that capture my attention and inspire me. I also love flowers and fruit. My best paintings come when I have an idea that haunts me until I can get paint to canvas. I love it when this happens; it is such a gift.

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

I know that I am on the right track if I maintain an orderly studio and palette. When things get messy it is time to take a break and pamper myself by taking a walk, reading a good book, or just close the studio door for a while until I can regroup.

Geisha 2
(click to see original image)

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

Currently, I am working with a new limited palette of only three colors and I find it challenging and very stimulating. The other interest of mine is in laying out a painting and working to refine my composition. This particular interest is an ongoing, ever-evolving problem to solve.

What makes you happiest about your art?

I love the look and feel of the paint and the act of painting brings me joy. (Well, with a little frustration mixed right in there to sweeten the mix.) Pure clean color makes me happy.

Thanks, Linda!

© 2015 Sophie Catalina Marine

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