Thursday, November 23, 2017

DPW Spotlight Interview: Linda Marino

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, "Tomatoes on the Vine- Kitchen Prep No. 2" go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing their interview.

From Linda's DPW Gallery:

Connecticut native, Linda Marino has a passion for painting animals, still life, landscapes and figures in oils, acrylics and watercolors. Linda's professional career began in marketing and advertising after receiving her BSBA at Western New England University. For the past 30 years Linda continues to work on her fine art skills studying in Florence, Italy, as well as several other CT Universities and local art schools. Linda enjoys share's her passion and knowledge of art through teaching classes and workshops at Artsplace in Cheshire and Arts Escape in Southbury as well as on location at retirement communities, senior centers, hospitals, and churches. Captivated by plein air (outdoor) painting, Linda's gear is always packed and ready for a painting excursion. The vast array of scenes that are just a short drive away keep drawing her back. From the rolling hills and farms of Litchfield County to the rocky coast to the lively energy of New Haven - subjects and scenes are plentiful. (click to read more)

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

Creating art has always been a part of me. I can remember in 3rd grade checking a book out of the library on how to draw dogs and practicing the same dog over and over. Junior high and high school it was woodworking, silversmithing, sewing, textile painting. In college I fell in love with watercolors. Then experimented in acrylics and onto oils. A little dabbling in pastels too.

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

Many. Since I didn’t officially go to art school  (I majored in business administration and marketing in college) I took every art class offered in order to apply for a study abroad art program in Florence Italy. That was a pivotal point in my life: at that moment I knew I had to incorporate “creating art” into my career. I worked in advertising and graphic design for the next ten years until I had my kids. When trying to get back into the graphics field after an 8 year break- the entire industry change - all my equipment was outdated and I had no clue how to write code for web design. Full circle, I decided to go back to my first love - painting and drawing. I took as many classes as my schedule and budget could afford while raise my three young children.  It wasn’t until 2012 that I had more time to paint and work full time on my art career.

Tomatoes on the Vine- Kitchen Prep No. 2
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with. 

Watercolors, charcoal, pencil,  acrylics, oils and  pastels. I like a variety of genres - still life, landscapes, cityscapes, seascapes, figurative and florals. I love creating custom pet portraits for others. I specialize in dogs but I have painted cats, pet chickens and even a pet elephant! I’m hooked on plein air painting and just “playing around” in my sketchbook.

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

 I’m currently stuck on oils and acrylics and my watercolors are used primarily for my sketchbook.

Soup Prep with Chef Dean
(click to view)

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

Acrylics. In the past I’ve used acrylics in the most traditional ways but recently I’ve taken a few classes and watched several demos on the versatility of acrylics - and wow! the possibilities seem endless!

Who or what inspires you most?

This is a hard question to answer because inspiration can come from so many places and in so many different ways. It could be a feeling of joy or happiness, or perhaps from viewing works by the Masters such as John Singer Sargent or Claude Monet to more contemporary artists such as Charles Sovek and Charles Movalli.  It could come from my quite time when journaling or just how the sunlight catches the rim of cup as I’m washing dishes. I suppose what drives my husband crazy is when we’re in the car and I yell “Stop!” - “ over there, I want to take a picture of that scene - I want to paint that!”. My students inspire me. As well as many artists who post their work on Daily Paintworks.

China - Pet Portrait Commission
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

Spending too much time on the computer … “researching”.

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

Since my teaching schedule has increased over the past two years, I have found it best to block in time on my calendar for “Just Painting”. Then I’ll work my marketing, administrative work and housework around that. I also carry around my sketchbook and try to incorporate even some quick sketches; on days when my schedule is full a quick sketch can nurture my creative soul. Sometimes you’ll find me sitting on the kitchen chair sketching the ingredients for the meal my chef husband is about to prepare.

Painters in Paradise
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

When plein air painting, I’ll drive or walk around a certain area for about 15 -20 minutes. Allowing my senses to fully engage with the surroundings. I’ll feel the heat of the sun warm my shoulders, the nip of the cold air on my fingertips, the smell of the fragrant honey suckles drifting through the air or the sometimes less than favorable whiff of low-tide. The sketchbook opens, a few quick sketches are scratched in and then up goes the easel.

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

Watching others create.  There is something so refreshing in watching the way someone else solves a problem creatively - with their hands or with technology. It opens doors to so many more ideas. Ideas I would have never thought of on my own. Whether it's painting, drawing, building, designing, etc. Online or in person - I just marvel at how we all have a unique way to solve problems or to create something from just some simple raw materials.

Mercy by the Sea, Mercy Center, Madison, CT
(click to view)

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

To be a better art instructor. I’m trying to slow down. To really break down the process of how I work and to figure out the best way to teach and explain it to others. This is challenging for me because sometimes I work fast and intuitively and when you have to stop and explain why you do what you are doing… that’s hard. But so rewarding.

What makes you happiest about your art?

Using the gifts that God has given me to create, teach, serve and love others.

Thanks, Linda!

© 2017 Sophie Marine

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