Thursday, August 22, 2019

DPW Spotlight Interview: Cheryl Wilson

Each week we will spotlight a different DPW artist who will give away one of their best paintings. To enter to win Cheryl's painting "Drinking Fawn" go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing their interview.

From Cheryl's DPW Page:

Cheryl paints at her home in Nevada City, California. She prefers oil on canvas, and her favorite subjects are people and animals. She spent many years in public education teaching a variety of subjects and grade levels. After a long time in the classroom teaching others, she began to study and teach herself art. Now she spends her days in her studio and is very grateful for the gift of being able to spend so much of her time painting.

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

As a child, I loved drawing and always believed I was good at it. When I began working as a young adult, art played no part, but I always considered myself artistic. Later, when I got the opportunity to spend my days learning to paint, I never looked back. I still study and always want to get better.

Drinking Fawn
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

I love watercolor, pen & ink (I am a Certified Zentangle Teacher), pastel, and beautiful pencil, but oil is my favorite.

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

I feel obligated to turn up with oil paintings for the two shows I do each year, so most of my work is in oil, but I refuse to give up the others that I love.

Peach with Leaf
(click to view)

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

Inktober is coming and I will make some contributions to that. I use a dip pen.

Who or what inspires you most?

People and animals are my favorite subjects, but I also love small scenes of nature, like an apple still on the branch. Wayne Thiebaud encourages me to take chances.

Deer Nibbles
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

Procrastination makes me feel bad. I try to always avoid it because I know I will be sorry. My problems come from responsibilities of life making such demands that painting time is usurped. I don’t like that, but I can’t help it. It is not so much procrastination as interference.

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

I must learn to say no to others’ demands. (I can’t always do it.) I love Mary Engelbreit’s illustration: “No. It is a complete sentence.”

(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

I have tried my hand at many subjects and over time I have narrowed my focus down to a few that always delight me. I search for the faces of movie stars of the 30’s and 40’s. So glamorous. I observe and photograph the wildlife in our county, and I look for the beauty in everyday objects. I have tried to paint landscapes because they are wonderful, but I have not yet found the secret to that success.

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

Sometimes I experience burnout and nothing I do looks good to me. Then I must decide if I will power through it or take a break in order to see with new eyes. Both approaches work but I can’t say in advance which one will do the trick.

(click to view)

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

When I first began showing my work, I felt shy about it. A fellow artist said, “Just be the best artist you are.” I did not find that very helpful then, but now I do. I am learning to trust the art I make and appreciate it even though I greatly admire artists more talented than I. I can see better now not to compare.

What makes you happiest about your art?

When people tell me they feel peace when they look at my work, I am amazed and grateful. There are people in the world I connect with in this way and I consider it a gift.

Thanks, Cheryl!

© 2019 Sophie Marine

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