Thursday, October 22, 2015

DPW Spotlight Interview: Jenny Doh

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

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

From Jenny's DPW Gallery:

Regarding my paintings, a person once told me that she liked my "whimsical angst." I really like that description and am happy to classify my painting style as such. I also like to describe my style as "magical realism," where I celebrate the essence and not just the likeness of my subjects from both my real life and imagined life. (click to read more)

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

I started painting in 2010 when started to take several intuitive acrylic painting workshops. Given that my first love has been yarn (knitting and crocheting), I was surprised to discover how much I loved painting. I quickly became diligent about practicing and working to develop my own style. In 2014 I took an oil painting workshop and loved it. I continue to explore both acrylics and oils and love them both and find that the more I paint with oils, the better I become with acrylics, and vice versa.

(click to view)

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

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

I'm dying to really get into watercolors. I plan on doing that in 2016. I've dabbled in it but never really carved out substantive time to concentrate on it and practice it. I'm excited to see how watercolors will influence my acrylics and oils.

Who or what inspires you most?

For me, there is hardly any person, place, or thing that DOESN'T inspire me. Everything inspires me and affects the way I think or feel and whether I know it or not, influences what and how I paint. I recently had the honor of being invited by The Getty to talk about my thoughts regarding the topic of inspiration for their new program titled The Getty Inspired. You can read it here if you want.

Having said all of the above, I would say that if I had to name my most significant muse to date, it would be Japanese novelist, Haruki Murakami. I am a big fan of his books. I've read all of them. The genre of his works is frequently called "magical realism." He is masterful in getting the reader to consider fantastic story lines within alternate realities that he creates. I know his works have influenced some of the subjects I've painted and also the mood that I frequently cast onto my subjects.

Neon Trio
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

I usually procrastinate on things that are related to the painting life but isn't the actual act of painting. For example, shooting photos, uploading photos, packing, shipping, etc. And I'm even worse about things like getting business cards made and ordering cartridges for my printer. But I remind myself that all of these activities that aren't that enjoyable for me all support the thing that IS enjoyable for me, which is painting.

I also have a tendency to procrastinate on things that I know I need to do to further my ability to paint. For example, figure drawing. It's difficult for me because I haven't had that much experience with it and I have to go out of my way to find opportunities to do it. But I know that even if the human figure isn't a current subject matter for me, knowing how to draw the human figure will help me become a better painter of other subjects. It's incredible how it works that way. And who knows ... maybe I will someday end up regularly painting the human figure.

Crab Apple
(click to view)
What techniques work to ensure that you make time for your art?

Lately, the fact that I'm participating in Daily Paintworks with a personal commitment to complete a small and list it (almost) every day is a wonderful technique that gets me to paint. Once I feel that I have that rhythm under my belt, I plan on figuring out ways to carve out regular time to do larger explorations on big canvases. I love painting smalls and I learn something with each one. I don't want to stop painting large so I want to make time for both.

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

By studying the art of other artists, by reading literature, by cooking lavish meals, by listening to good music, by listening to interesting podcasts, by having good conversations with people.

Roses in a Jar
(click to view)

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

I suppose I will answer that with an assumption that I AM keeping things fresh and engaging. Am I? I hope so. Synonymous to "fresh" is "relevant." Everyone wants to feel relevant. I think I try my best to do this by choosing colors that feel interesting and exciting. I also do this by sprinkling in some feelings of "magical realism" into my works where things aren't depicted completely realistically.

(click to view)

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

I am learning about how keeping certain subjects farther from me (like flowers) allows me to paint them better in an abstract sort of way. When the subjects are too close, I get way too caught up with the details. Keeping the subject far away makes everything a bit vague, which allows me to make large chunky strokes that work for me.

What makes you happiest about your art?

That for the most part, it is made within the context of non-censored freedom.

Thanks, Jenny!

© 2015 Sophie Catalina Marine

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