Thursday, February 27, 2020

DPW Spotlight Interview: Kerry Hastings Hogan

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

From Kerry's DPW Gallery Page:

I am a native of Cleveland, Ohio, currently living in Cypress, Texas just outside of Houston. I earned my bachelor degree in Fashion Design from The University of Cincinnati (College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning). After graduating, I worked for ten years as a designer, eight of which were with Ralph Lauren in NYC. I left my dream job to raise my three children. We have moved five times with my husband's job, our latest in 2012 to Houston. Finally settled, and the kids more independent, I got back to creating. (click to read more)

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

Creating has always been a part of who I am. I grew up sewing, baking, designing garden bed layouts with my mom, and sketching. I went to the University of Cincinnati and earned my Bachelor in Fashion Design through their incredible D.A.A.P program (Design, Architecture, Art, and Urban Planning). In my first year foundation courses, one of my illustration instructors was a colored pencil artist. She showed our class slides of her work one day and when I saw the rich color that could be achieved with colored pencil, I dove right in. It was the next natural step, for me, to add color to my sketches and I started sketching the world around me, not just fashion and figures. I also had friends in the architecture department, and when I would visit them, I would have to walk past the painting studios. The paint looked so fun to mix and put on canvas in bold strokes of color.  It looked expressive and exciting. I was growing weary of the time it would take me to complete a small colored pencil drawing, so I was determined to learn how to paint.

Snapdragons
(click to view)

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

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

I had many stops and starts with painting, but I was always creating in some form. I worked as a fashion designer for ten years, eight of which were with Ralph Lauren in NYC. I have three children that are very close in age, and we moved to different states five times with my husband’s job. Each of the moves involved the time consuming tasks of setting up a new home, enrolling the kids in new schools, finding new doctors for everyone, and making new friends (the best part). There wasn’t much time or energy left for making art, but I did manage to take watercolor classes in two of those cities. We have been in Texas for about eight years now, so about four years ago we were settled, the kids were older, and I started painting regularly.

Total Riot (Figs No. 3)
(click to view)

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 have used charcoal, design markers, colored pencil, watercolor, acrylic, and oils. Once I tried oils, I never returned to other mediums. I love how the color stays true, and how forgiving they are. I’m not intimidated to put brush to canvas since I know I can scrape it back and start again if I need to. I would like to try charcoal again. It is messy, but I love the interesting marks it makes.

For genres, I did loads of fashion illustration, life/figure drawing, and clothing illustration in college and for work. Ralph Lauren didn’t like sketches that were computer generated. Everything was hand drawn which was great for keeping up my drawing skills. I now paint mostly flowers and still life with the occasional animal thrown in. I definitely want to paint more animals and explore landscape further.

Rainier Cherries No. 1
(click to view)

Who or what inspires you most? How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

Contrast is probably the single design element that inspires me most. I’m most drawn to light, shadow, bold color combinations, graphic patterns, and varied texture. In still life, I love the combination of organic, soft, natural shapes mixed with man-made hard lined shapes. The ideas for my paintings usually stem from a contrast that I have observed and want to capture.

I am inspired by (to name a few) Frederic Remington, Kerry James Marshall, Walter Hunt Everett, Van Gogh, Mark Daniel Nelson, and Malcolm Liepke - all for their handling of light and brave use of color. 

What does procrastination look like for you?

Procrastination, for me, is usually a result of lack of confidence in something new, like a new subject that I’ve never painted. I’ll get a million other chores done before I attempt it.

Big Love
(click to view)

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

In order to make time for my art, I went back to the work schedule I kept as a designer (minus the sixty hour work weeks!). I paint during the day. At 3:00 my day ends when the kids come home.  I do dinner and chores in the evening.

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

I try to only paint things that I am excited about. I feel like it comes across in the painting if I’m not that excited about the subject matter. The challenge of new subjects and genres keeps me from burnout. I also like to vary the size of my paintings. I really enjoy painting large. Sometimes it can be refreshing to return to a painting the next day instead of starting new every day.

Morning Cuppa
(click to view)

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

I’ve been experimenting recently with using color to convey mood. I’m appreciating just how colorful a painting can be even with the use of muted tones.

What makes you happiest about your art?

I’m just getting started, so it seems like there are endless amounts of subject matter to pursue. I will never be done learning and that challenge will keep it fun. However, the biggest thrill is when someone else connects with my work.

Thanks, Kerry!

© 2020 Sophie Marine

Friday, February 21, 2020

DPW Spotlight Interview: Steve Ellison

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

From Steve's DPW Gallery Page:

Steve has been involved in the visual arts for most of his professional life. His attraction to painting grew from watching his mother paint landscapes as he was growing up and from his studies of the great portrait painters.

As the owner and photographic portrait artist at LSN Studios - a leading portrait studio in Reno, Nevada, Steve created artistic wall portraiture of families, children and high school seniors for more than twenty years. Every day was a new exercise in composition, lighting, color values and personality management! He earned the Master of Photography Degree from the Professional Photographers of America in 2003. During these years he also created a vast library of landscape photographs, many of which were imaged using film on large and medium format camera gear and printed in his studio darkroom. He later became an expert user of Adobe Photoshop. Steve leverages these experiences and knowledge in the creation of his paintings. (click to read more)

Genoa Road
(click to view)

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

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

My mom was a talented landscape painter - first in oils then in watercolors, but I was never the kid that was always drawing and doodling. Only after I was fully immersed in a professional photography career did my curiosity start to awaken - especially after studying the works of the great portrait painters. "What would it be like to paint?", I often thought. The one day my insurance salesman brother in law announced that he was now oil painting - I had to start after that! 

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

Several! When I first started I had the proverbial collection of lots of tubes of paint. Too many choices resulted in discouragement and taking a break. Then I discovered the sweet science of the limited pallet. Three primaries and white, and that's it - been that way ever since! Maybe it's due to my photographic background, but I have no problem mixing colors, even to match existing colors.

Fall in Lamoille Canyon
(click to view)

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

I started and have always stuck with oils - for no other reason than that's what all the great masters that I admire used. I paint on primed Masonite. I created a great many landscape photographs over the years - even getting to the point of investing in large format photography gear (think Ansel Adams under a dark cloth kind of stuff). I really only have an interest for landscape images probably due to that reason.

Who or what inspires you most?

For inspiration I look for paintings that have a mood. Artists that are able to create a comfortable living either being a dedicated full time or part time artist are always an inspiration!

Spring in Nevada
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

Talking myself out of a subject. "That's too hard to try", or "that subject is too busy". I need to get over that! Maybe next week...

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

I'm always searching for new subject matter throughout the day, and always have a camera ready for reference. While I would like one day to have the time to just drop everything and go paint outdoors, till then having a stream of possible source images at my disposal sure helps.

Grand Canyon Storm
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

I look for the composition first. How will the eye be directed through the scene? I learned long ago to sketch out the scene first in a sketchbook. Here I can solve composition problems before they rear their ugly head midway through a painting session.

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

Right now I'm all about values. Get the values and the composition and the shapes right, and color will almost take care of itself.

Carson Valley Color
(click to view)

What makes you happiest about your art?

I like to step back and take a good solid look at a finished work. If I can think, "Wow - I did that!" then it's mission accomplished!

Thanks, Steve!

© 2020 Sophie Marine

Friday, February 14, 2020

DPW Spotlight Interview: Artemi Glazkov

Each week we will spotlight a different DPW artist who will give away one of their best paintings. To enter to win Artemi's painting "#127 Tonal Study" go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing their interview.

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

I painted my first paintings about ten or twelve years ago. We had just moved into a new house and its bare walls were in need of some decoration. I bought a set of acrylics, brushes and several cheap canvases and painted some still life. Surprisingly, almost all of them from life. The paintings turned out to be okay-ish, but I put brushes aside and dedicated my free time to other hobbies.

Just over a year ago I returned to painting again and seriously this time. The initial push came from my dear wife who threatened me with buying a cheap painting on Amazon to cover an empty wall. I could not stand that. At around that time I came across the “Daily Paintings” book by Carol Marine and the whole idea of painting small and frequently. Well, there are now so may paintings in our house that we do not have enough walls.

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

Not really. It is far too short to have any serious gaps and I am too old to allow them to happen. There are so many things to learn and try! But of course the real life may interfere at some point.

#127 Tonal Study
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with? Which ones have "stuck" and which ones have fallen away? 

Drawing with pencil was the first medium I tried. I always knew I could draw reasonably well. On rare occasions I drew something people commented on positively, but it did not become a hobby. I have an engineering degree, thus, due to my training, I have also never experienced any problems with understanding things like perspective, physics of light and reflection, etc. However, I have never formally learned any art beyond ordinary lessons at school.

I have also tried watercolour and gouache. I have found pure watercolour to be too complicated and difficult for me. I prefer a combination of watercolour and gouache or just pure gouache. I think gouache gives me more flexibility without overcomplicating the process of painting itself. Unfortunately, I do not have enough time to really dedicate myself to that medium at the moment

I have also tried oils. Definitely they have not “stuck”. I love the medium, but the technical side of the process makes it too difficult for me to manage in my current circumstances. I do not have a dedicated studio or even a permanent place in the house to deal with such “oily” medium.

So, the medium of my choice is acrylics. This is the one I am trying to excel at this stage. I have learned a lot about what is possible to do with acrylics, which is to put it simply, a lot. However, now I know some of the medium’s limitations as well.

I have always been drawn to art capturing light in nature. So, I am not surprised I find landscapes to be the most appealing genre. But again, I must add, “at the moment”. I have painted several still life paintings and found that I enjoy it very much.

#148 Getting Old
(click to view)

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

I really want to return to oils at some stage for a more serious study of the medium. Everything I know about it suggests an interesting journey. It is so to speak “a big idea”. Perhaps in a few years I may be able to overcome the lack of proper studio and all other problems I had with oils previously.

My plan for the more immediate future is to start getting out for not necessarily frequent but regular plein air sessions. Painting is a hobby for me and between other things I have to do it is difficult to find time for regular outings. My plan is to start on that path this year.

Another aspect I would like to explore more this year is still life. Due to the already mentioned lack of a studio I do not have a good way to setup for still life, but this problem seams to be less difficult to overcome. Time will tell.

Who or what inspires you most?

Oh! There are so many great artists I get inspired by. Both past and present. The list would be long.  Perhaps James Gurney and Kevin D. Macpherson are at the top of the list though. It is not only because the art they create, but also because of the way they explain what they do and how.

#105 Waiting
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

I am a wrong person to ask this question. My painting career is too short. I have just one time slot during a day, between 9 pm and midnight, I can use for painting. I only have three hours to do something I really want to do much more often. Do I need more motivation? I think not.

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

No pointless internet browsing; no forum reading or something like that; no TV; no facebooks and twitters. I do spend some time checking Instagram, but my links are limited entirely to painting and it is more like an educational tool, rather than a social media for me.

#141 Going to Be Hot
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

There is no any predetermined way. Sometimes I really think hard about a painting for a long time. In most cases though, I do not spend that much time procrastinating about what to do next.  I consider every painting I do as an exercise focusing on a particular technical aspect, I need to learn for my skills “tool box”.  The list is very long and it is just a matter of picking one item, any item really, from that list.

I usually set myself a sort of a target for the next two… three paintings. For example, last week was dedicated to still life. I had several small boards I really wanted to use, but they were too small for any landscapes. Why not to use them for still life?  So, I painted several small paintings setting a task of using only a limited palette of yellow ochre, red and black, Zorn palette.

Another time I might get interested in a particular brushstroke or a combination of colours or whatever, and that would be the theme of my next exercise.   

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

I am not sure how engaging my art is. I do not have any yardstick to measure it. Some people buy my paintings from time to time and my family thinks I am doing ok. So, perhaps the art is engaging.

As for the freshness of it, whatever I paint it is something I am interested in one way or another. It is not a problem to find something exciting for the next step. I hope that a bit of that interest and positive feeling I get from learning transpose into my paintings.

#78 Bright Autumn Day
(click to view)

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

Right now, and it has been the main theme for some time, I am learning how to use greys in my palette more efficiently. I feel that sometimes my colours get over-saturated and sometimes quite the opposite. I know what I am doing wrong, and I can correct myself alright, but often it takes too many steps to arrive to the right results.

What makes you happiest about your art?

I feel that other people do really enjoy my art. It somehow resonates with their feelings. I am very excited that I can use my paintings to share my view of the world.

Thanks, Artemi!

© 2020 Sophie Marine

Thursday, February 6, 2020

DPW Spotlight Interview: Erin Martinelli

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

From Erin's DPW Gallery Page:

Erin J. Martinelli, is a Northern California artist who finds her inspiration in animals, nature, abstract, and architecture genres to create brilliant acrylics, etching prints, and watercolors. Erin J. Martinelli trained at the very early age of seven years old at The Casements in Ormond Beach, FL, the former winter home of John D. Rockefeller. She then later studied at Seabreeze High School, AP Art, under Nina Masters, and continued onto the University of Cincinnati, College of Fine Arts, Design, Architecture, Art and Planning. (click to read more)

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

At the tender age of seven years old I took an art class at The Casements in Ormond Beach, FL, the former winter home of John D. Rockefeller. I fell in love.

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

Yes, in 2010, my husband and I had a beautiful baby, which took a lot of time away from my art.  Again, in 2014, I was suddenly diagnosed with Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS), a rare neurological disorder in which the body's immune system mistakenly attacks part of its peripheral nervous system.

After several years of recovering from GBS, I have finally re-entered the art world once again! Last year I joined as a member artist the Elk Grove Fine Arts Center, in Elk Grove, CA. I entered ten art shows, was juried in to five of them. I painted thirty pieces of new art in 2019. So far, in 2020, I am keeping up that pace! I have put together an art class and then show called Faces of Mary, at the local Catholic School. I have also painted eight new larger pieces of work in January alone.



Wine Time
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?


Mediums I absolutely love are acrylics, and etchings. I find my inspiration in animals, nature, abstract, and architecture genres to create brilliant acrylics, and etching prints.


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

Watercolor has always been interesting to me, and I enjoy it very much. However, the medium is slower and more controlling.

I prefer acrylic due to the medium's ability to work fast, and I do work very fast. Scratchboard is something I can do anywhere, anytime. Traveling for work, or after school extracurricular activities - scratchboard art gives me an opportunity to do art anywhere.

Ocean Rain
(click to view)

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

I am really diving deep right now into my acrylic work and more abstract painting. I am very excited about some of the pieces I have done.

Who or what inspires you most?

Light. Light and color inspire me most. In fact, this year I am working on a special series of about ten to twenty paintings called, “Light of the World Series,” to showcase light and color.

Salt of the Earth
(click to view)


What does procrastination look like for you?

Being a busy mom, full time employee, wife, and artist, there really is not any time for procrastination. Time is very important to me and I use every bit of spare time I get wisely. Having also been very sick with Guillain-Barre Syndrome (GBS), I realize how precious your time is, and that is something I do not take for granted.



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

I recently moved a very large armoire into the kitchen dinette area. This large piece of furniture houses all my supplies, and art canvases (although it is outgrowing this space rapidly!). Having that piece sitting right there where I see it every day reminds me to take time and paint. Someday soon we will complete a renovation on our home that will incorporate space that is already earmarked as my studio.

Faces of Mary
(click to view)


How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?


Generally, I see something that catches my eye. A beautiful sunset, or light rays from early morning.  Commuting 1.25 hours each way to work, I look at nature all the time.


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

This past summer I took a scratch art class at the gallery I am a member artist of, and I enjoyed it very much! In fact, I find that when I am getting tight in my acrylic paintings, it helps to do a scratch art to loosen up. Going from loose abstract bright colors and vibrant painting time to very detailed black and white art is very helpful to me. It creates a shifting of gears for me, and it is very helpful.



Octopus
(click to view)

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

Right now, I am learning what I love about the art I am creating and what I don’t like. I have spent a lot of time thinking about my art, what inspires me, and have chosen to focus and embrace the joy it brings me.



What makes you happiest about your art?

I love colors and light, and I enjoy looking at beautiful colors and images. It gives me a sense of great accomplishment to sell a piece, or create something special for someone.

Thanks, Erin!

© 2020 Sophie Marine

Thursday, January 30, 2020

DPW Spotlight Interview: Suzanne Hallerman

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

From Suzanne's DPW Gallery Page:

I've always been drawn to color. And I see it everywhere, in high definition. I want to put it all on a canvas, and then on another, and another. Through trial and error, I've discovered that I prefer to paint organic shapes, and I have a penchant for painting people's pets, dogs in particular. Mixing oil paint and putting it on a canvas brings me a tremendous amount of joy. And it's satisfying to know that my work has brought color, and hopefully a bit of cheer, to the walls of people beyond folks I'm related to.

It's never too late to do the things that call you. Listen to the nudges and the urges that linger. You never know what you might discover. (click to read more)

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

I started painting about five years ago, in my early forties. I’ve always felt drawn to it, but never made the time. About ten years ago, I took a class called ‘Large Paintings’ from the local community college here in Portland. I was SO excited. Six weeks later, I carted home a hideous painting which promptly found its place facing the wall, propped up against a pile of junk, in the dark unfinished basement, and I thought ‘not that’. But it still called, way in the background. My kids were little and I didn’t have a lot of time. Then, I saw a painting that a friend had done. It was her third ever painting and it was wonderful - so colorful and full of personality! She had taken a class with local artist Julia Peltz. I decided to give it one more go and I enrolled. I painted a landscape and then another. I was hooked. I took the class four more times before I decided I would have enough motivation to paint minus the obligation of the class.

I'm Good Fat!
(click to view)

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

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

Even though my ‘career’ has been short, I’ve still had plenty of stops and starts. I’d love to make a full time living as an artist and I’m actively working towards that. In the meantime, life calls and the bills still need to be paid which can make it hard to be consistent. Starting in the late fall of 2019, I’ve doubled back on my efforts to make a living with art. Daily Paintworks has been a huge motivator in that. Carol Marine’s book, Daily Painting, was recommended to me by a fellow artist friend a couple of years ago. It resonated SO much. She makes it all feel so approachable and doable. The ‘daily’ aspect, which I generally change to ‘often’, is a game changer.

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

Not too many really. Oil painting is my number one. I have always been drawn to creativity and art, but I’m afflicted with the need to do things well right out of the gate. It’s a bit of a curse, and I’m working to give myself permission to experiment more. It’s a process for sure. I did have a letterpress business for a decade and I spent fifteen years as a graphic designer and illustrator. Creating things is just plain fun and you can do it in so many ways. I’m an avid, and amateur, photographer. I’m also a do-it-yourselfer and a homeowner, so I’ve focused a lot on my living spaces lately.

Cinder
(click to view)

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

I would like to explore more, but for now, I have no plans to do much besides paint. In October, I
bought a giant canvas. My dream is to just step up to it with no plan and start. I still haven’t started -
like, I can’t even take the wrapping off of the canvas. If you ask me to paint something in particular,
it’s no problem. When it has very few parameters, I really struggle. Allowing myself some freedom,
forgiveness, and grace is next on the agenda.

Who or what inspires you most?

I’m inspired by so much. I find travel and people to be super inspirational. I love seeing what other
artists are creating. Social media makes all of that so much more accessible too. Obviously it has its
downsides, but I love the feeling of being connected to a broader ‘thing’ as long as I remind myself to
not compare. Currently I’m participating in a challenge called ‘Art Dare’ that a fellow artist that I admire and found on DPW, Teddi Parker, has started with some of her artist buddies. It’s way more motivating to get out there and be creative when you feel like you’re part of a larger movement.

Roscoe T Mcgillicutty
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

What doesn’t it look like? I’m an excellent procrastinator! For me, it looks like doing anything besides what I’m ‘supposed’ to be doing - cooking, laundry, cleaning, social media, lunch dates, walks, watching Love It or List It, playing solitaire on my phone... Ironically, I find that being commissioned to do a painting is a double edge sword. It’s wonderful to be paid up front, but sometimes the source I’m given to paint from is not inspiring - fortunately, it often is. I find that to be the hardest. And then, I feel like everything bottlenecks behind that one thing that I feel stuck in. Or, that time in a painting when you just wonder why you’re bothering - before it all comes together... just me? That’s sometimes when I find it hardest to stay at the easel. The more I paint, the easier it gets. I’ve also discovered that it’s better for me to paint alla prima and try to finish in one go, two max.

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

I’ve recently started, or resumed, a dedicated space for my art on Instagram - @Suzannehallerman, and renewed my DPW membership. I find that things like this help me to create often. There’s some implied accountability. Of course no one is asking me to, but if I want to have a base of followers and make a living making art, I feel like I’m obligated to offer fresh and consistent content. I need to act like it’s my job, because I want it to be! It’s always my goal that I’m going to paint first thing on any given day, but life doesn’t always, or even generally, work out that way, so it often ends up being the last thing I do. Ironically of course, some of my best work has been started at 9:30pm.

Happy Feet
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

Lately it’s been dogs, dogs, and more dogs. #Artdare and challenges like that can be fun and help get me out of a rut and into painting things I would otherwise never attempt. Participating in those kinds of things also helps me feel like I have permission in an unexpected and helpful way. Besides that, life... I’ve found that I’ve started looking at things in terms of light. I’d like to move into painting more portraits. I notice that I’ve begun to see more through a ‘painting lens’ in my everyday life - like, the different planes on people’s faces and I notice that I try to discern what specific color different elements would be as we engage. Other times it’s just that feeling that something would make a great painting. My memory is not fantastic, so I take loads of pictures. Sometimes I take a pic, or see one and just ‘know’ that it has to be a painting! I have yet to tackle painting from life, but I’m intrigued and feel like I could learn so much from it.

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

I think just engaging with life. Inspiration is everywhere. I’m not afraid to try new things - workshops, restaurants, different parts of town, traveling, what accounts I follow on Instagram, movies. This modality is still so new for me. I’m definitely still finding my way. Noticing everything. And observing what I do well and where I still have so much room for improvement.

Let's Be Fronds
(click to view)

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

Right now, I feel like I’m focused on intention. I find that I can get very caught and overwhelmed with the details. I see ALL of the colors, and I want to put them ALL on the canvas. It’s a constant conversation of ‘big picture’. There are various ways to combat that. I’m heavy handed. Painting with a larger brush has helped me stay out of the minutiae. And taking my glasses off! That, and reminding myself to see the bigger picture and have a plan. I can get off track easily. The other thing that I’m acutely aware of currently is how many parallels there are between painting and life.

What makes you happiest about your art?

I think what makes me happiest lately is when I’ve done a portrait for someone and they reflect that I’ve captured more than just the likeness of their pet. It’s very satisfying to capture the essence or spirit of a loved living being. That and when a piece just really comes together beyond what you could have expected and you feel it in your body - or when I wake up early because I’m anxious to have another look at what I finished the night before. I love when I surprise myself. Ironically, the more I want a painting to be great, the more stuck I usually feel in it. When I have a more relaxed approach, I’m able to be looser in my style, which is something I’m always working towards. I did mention the life lesson parallels, right?

Thanks, Suzanne!

© 2020 Sophie Marine

Thursday, January 23, 2020

DPW Spotlight Interview: Beverly Bruntz

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

From Beverly's DPW Gallery Page:

An oil painter, Beverly is often drawn to paint outdoors. Her expressive oil paintings are meant to transport the viewer to ordinary places that evoke a sense of nostalgia. For inspiration she travels the backroads finding rural scenes and quiet spaces. Now living in the bluegrass region of Kentucky, she has an endless supply of subjects. While the subject of her paintings varies, it is the quality of the light that helps her narrow in on a particular scene.

Each painting presents a new set of challenges. Beverly tries to hone in on the elements she can control and then lets the beauty of the moment take over. Inevitably there is a surprise during the creative process. For Beverly, it is that element of spontaneity that motivates her to keep painting.

On Daily Paintworks you will find smaller works and studies at an affordable price. Enjoy. For larger works or more information on Beverly please visit www.beverlybruntzfinearts.com

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting. Did you have any stops and starts in your painting career? 

From as early as I can remember, I have always had a love for drawing but never studied art formally. In my mid thirties I decided to enroll in art at my local community college as a stress reliever from my corporate job. That beginning drawing class grew into another and another. Eventually, I graduated with a degree in Illustration and worked in graphic design for a textile company. I would paint occasionally in the evenings or on weekends for several years. When that job ended I decided to take the opportunity to get more serious about painting as a full time career. Since then, there have been a few years when I have had to find other sources of income. But, I always come back to what I truly love, painting.

What mediums and genres have you experimented with? 

I’ve tried many media: drawing, watercolor, pastel, acrylic, scratchboard, oil.

The Trail
(click to view)

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

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

Oil is the medium that suits me best. I find oil to have the most possibilities for exploring. I also appreciate the archival qualities of an oil painting.

Who or what inspires you most?

I paint from life whenever possible. In the warmer months, I paint a lot of landscapes in plein air. But I also love to paint still life, animals, and sometimes experiment with abstraction.

Wooded Light
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

Procrastination usually shows up in my day in the form of social media. So I try to limit my time and have a plan for upcoming posts before opening the apps.

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

I have tried to keep the same schedule for my art as I did when I was working for someone else. Monday through Friday, nine to five. However, that changes when going to a paint out or gallery openings. I tend to work more than a forty hour week most of the time.

Sunrise Dawning
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

I am typically drawn to a subject to paint by the quality of the light.

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

I find going to openings, museums, seeing others artwork, listening to art podcasts are great ways to keep my art mindset ‘fresh’.

Cafe Au Lait
(click to view)

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

Right now as an artist I am learning more about entrepreneurship. Something I wished I had learned in art school. With the traditional gallery/artist model changing, entrepreneurship is imperative in order to continue to have an art career.

What makes you happiest about your art?

It is such a blessing to be able to make art. To be able to choose what type of art I want to make. Actually making an income from my work, that’s even better.

Blue Creek Fall
(click to view)

Thanks, Beverly!

© 2020 Sophie Marine

Friday, January 17, 2020

DPW Spotlight Interview: Maria Snarska

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

From Maria's DPW Gallery Page:

Hello, I draw oil paintings and botanical drawings with a pen or pencil. Drawings can be seen and be purchased as a digital file here.

I am an artist since childhood. My parents always supported my passion for drawing and sculpture. I graduated from the Academy of Arts with a degree in graphics and am still on my way to excellence in drawing and painting. I have been painting realistic still lifes for the past seven years. I seek and find beauty everywhere and continue to improve my drawing technique. I love everything that I draw so much! And I see that my customers feel it!

I live and work in Kiev, Ukraine.

Original painting for sale and portraits to order, you can see here.

Please keep in mind that everyone who buys a picture in my store ArtVisible will get a portrait in pencil as a gift.

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

I began to draw as a child as all children do, and so I continue. My father was my first drawing teacher.

Last Green Leaves
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?


I painted in very different techniques such as tempera, watercolor, oil, acrylic, ink, pencil, pen, marker. I also sculpted sculptural portraits, was engaged in ceramics and relief. Now I mainly paint realistic still lifes and landscapes in oil and portraits in pencil. Oil has revealed great opportunities for the implementation of my ideas - an ideal technique for drawing in the style of realism. I don’t do sculpture at all now.

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

I don’t know exactly where my creative thought will lead me in the future. I will endlessly research all drawing techniques!

Custom Portrait
(click to view)

Who or what inspires you most?

I am very inspired by the sunlight. Sunlight reveals the shape of objects and greatly changes all colors. It transforms and makes even the usual urban environment romantic and mysterious, fills it with mood. I live in the city but I have a garden and two parks nearby so I am surrounded by nature.

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

Usually, I go to my garden to collect a bouquet of flowers and make up a still life, supplement it, then wait for the necessary lighting for several days, then photograph and start painting. Sometimes I start to paint a picture from nature. I try to convey the harmony, mood, personality of each flower or fruit. When I draw, this is a special state of mind - calm. There are no technical secrets in the technique of my drawing. I try to draw every piece of the picture beautifully.

Still life with chrysanthemums and apples
(click to view)

How long do you need to paint one still life with oil?

All still lifes are very different and the time for painting with oil varies from one month to three times that. Little oil sketches I paint in one to three days.

What does procrastination look like for you?

Oh, this is terrible - I go from room to room and do all sorts of nonsense, but at the same time I think about important things.

Still life with lilies
(click to view)

How do you fight procrastination?

I tell myself that I need a result, not just employment. Sometimes it works.

When I have an urgent or compulsory job, I sit down in front of the easel and look at the canvas, not allowing myself to leave. After a while, I start mixing paints on the palette and finally paint with oil.

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

Just seizing the moment and working. I divide the day in half - morning and day for painting, evening for graphics. The deadline is very good for me.

Springtime
(click to view)

What makes you happiest about your art?

I am happy when I can draw a picture of how I imagine it in my mind right the first time, without corrections and redraws!

I am happy when people like my paintings. I am very pleased that the community and the Daily Paintworks artists have written positive reviews for my drawings and paintings. This also supports me very much.

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

There really were periods in my life when I did not draw at all. For example, when my daughter was small. Now I have time for drawing - I paint at home. And I think my career as an artist will be actively developing right now!

Wild flowers and pears
(click to view)

Thanks, Maria!

© 2020 Sophie Marine

Thursday, January 9, 2020

DPW Spotlight Interview: Johanneke Strydom

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

From Johanneke's DPW Gallery Page:


Five years ago we left the city behind, and moved to the countryside in South Africa. We are still in the process of building up a run-down farm. An adventure in itself! In this new setting, I rediscovered myself as artist, being in awe of the ever changing beauty of the landscape and seasons around me. My 'studio' is a very rustic wooden cabin in a poplar grove. Surrounded by trees I came to love the silence and solitude. Here I spend many happy hours trying to capture the feel of what my eyes see. Apart from that, I have a full life as farmer's wife and homeschooling our four children. Too many good and worthwhile things to do in a day...

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

My mother tells the story of me (age two) sitting between her and my father on the endless roads in Namibia, happily drawing for hours on end. Totally caught up in the act of creating. Creating became my special place where I felt most alive and at peace. My parents supported my artistic interest, and provided art classes for me since I was six. After school I studied kindergarten teaching, and in my free time I started painting in acrylics, and then later in oils. But it remained only a hobby up to three years ago, when I read Carol Marine's book "Daily Painting". I was so inspired, I started to paint a small painting every day. And I have not stopped yet... I find it a wonderful way to stay in the creative flow, and practice, while not committing a lot of time to a large painting. It can speed up your learning tremendously.

Where do you find the time to paint?

When my children were young, it was really difficult to focus and have enough space in my head to spend enough time to progress in painting. I take my hat off to professional artists with small children. Now that my children are older, people still ask me where I find the time to paint. My answer: "I don't find the time, I make the time." I think it has a lot to do with mindset. I am learning to value my art making more, so I give it a large chunk of time everyday. 

These autumn days
(click to view)

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

What mediums have you experimented with? And which one has 'stuck'?

I started out in watercolor, pencils, charcoal and acrylics. They were all great fun, and have so many possibilities. But when I found oil paint, I was hooked... The intensity, the rich colors, the creamy texture, all of it... The possibilities with oils are endless. There are so many ideas and techniques I still want to explore. I will always look for ways to better express myself, to capture the essence of a subject, and to say more with less.

What inspires you most?

Creation. I feel a deep connection with the Creator when I am out in nature. Painting is foremost a spiritual experience to me.

I grew up in wild open spaces, with my father being a zoologist and taking us all over Southern Africa. It feels as if the African landscape is in my blood. It can stir me, and even drive me to tears. It urges me to express it, to capture something of the fleeting moment, of that which lay beyond words. I feel a connection with the land that I can best describe with a brush and thick oil paint. That is why I tend to paint fast and intuitively. Putting my impression down as raw and honest as I can. 'Plein air' painting is the ultimate art form to me, and I make it my biggest priority in my painting practice to paint on location as often as I can.

Cliffs of Mafube
(click to view)

Who are important influences on your work?

Edgar Payne for his use of color and brushwork, Sorolla for his quality of light, Georgia O'Keeffe for her search for solitude and immersing herself in the desert landscape, the Russian Impressionists, to name a few. But at the top of my list will be Kevin Macpherson. I love his loose brushwork and sensitive use of color. But what inspires me most is his Pond Project: a challenge to himself to paint the same view from his window over a pond, for every day of the year, in all seasons and times of day. I so admire determination like that!

I am thankful for all influences and see it as inspiration to find my own path.   

What does procrastination look like for you?

It looks like wasting my time. Keeping myself busy with things that are not mine to do, that does not benefit me or anybody else. But what procrastination really is, is fear. Fear of making, fear of being vulnerable and stepping out and the fear of failing. I know these feelings well, and work hard to overcome them daily.

There are great books to read on overcoming fear in the creative process. I can recommend "Art and Fear" by David Bayles and Ted Orland, and "The War of Art" by Steven Pressfield.

Road to Montagu
(click to view)

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

I would say to simplify my life. We moved to a farm five years ago, and here we live a very simple life with very little intrusion from the outside world. I learned to see my art as my 'work'. And I will tell my children I am going to work when I go to my studio. My art must have priority in my mind, before I will give it priority in my life.

And to do my best work, I must look after myself. I keep my life as uncomplicated as possible. It is important to eat healthy, get enough sleep and surround myself with uplifting things and people, as far as I can.

That forms a good foundation, to make it as easy as possible to do my work. I have a loose schedule for everyday with enough time not to feel rushed in the process. I get up early, get in the right mindset, and then start creating. I don't always know what I will paint. I don't always feel inspired.  But I will go and do something. I will start with something. Like Picasso said: 'Inspiration exists, but you have to find it working.'

I will also challenge myself at times. That commitment helps to make the time. At the moment I am busy with a thirty-one day creative challenge: to paint a small painting from life for every day of the month of January. Just to get myself going for the New Year. And forming the habit of daily painting from life. You can follow me on Instagram: johannekestrydom and join me!     

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

I try to keep my eyes and heart open to feel what speaks to me. I love to travel and see new vistas, and be able to respond spontaneously to what I see. It is more like a dialogue. I 'feel' the inspiration by what I see, and then respond with a brush and paint.

I work a lot with small thumbnail sketches to get a strong design/composition before I start a painting. But try not to intellectualize anything.

I also like to do short series of one subject that speaks to me.

Eucalyptus Sunset
(click to view)

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

When I get tight in the studio, the best medicine for me is to go outside and do small color studies from life. I have a small sketchbook where I make small 2"x 3" oil sketches. They take 2-5 minutes each: no time for detail. I only put down color notes as accurately as possible. It refreshes me instantly. And helps to keep my work in the studio fresh and loose.

To avoid burnout, I try to live at an easy pace. I aim for a balance between self discipline and self grace. I take off one day a week for reflection, inspiration gathering and family time. I think it is important for an artist to be engaged in a rich life, full of experiences. Inspiration can come to you any time and in any place. Just keep your artist's eye open.

Here are some more ways I get inspired:

- I try to do a painting trip every few months. I love to really get into the wilderness and down to earth. My main aim on a trip like that is to do as many small color studies on location that I can. To immerse myself into the landscape and to really feel it. An experience like that becomes a well of inspiration for months to come.

- I look at my favorite artist's work. Really look. How they achieved a certain effect. When I get into a problem with a painting, I will go and look how some master handled the same subject.

- I limit my painting time. It works! After a day or two I can't wait to get back to my easel...

Nguni Calf
(click to view)

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

The business side of being an artist. Where to sell, how to price my work etc.  It is a steep learning curve, and not my favorite part of being an artist. But what I do like is making connections with other artists and clients, meeting amazing people, and building relationships. 

What makes you happiest about your art?

When I feel connected through the process of painting. To God, to nature, to myself, to other people. I find art to be a most precious gift to enjoy and share!

Thanks, Johanneke!

© 2020 Sophie Marine

Thursday, January 2, 2020

DPW Spotlight Interview: Jimmy Longacre

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

From Jimmy's DPW Gallery Page:

It’s a thrill to paint the pictures, but it's important to me that my paintings engage you, the viewer. That's what motivates the designing of my painting. When painting outdoors I select whatever catches my attention for a study directly from nature. Back in the studio, I compose the ones that stand out to me, and that's done with you in mind. "Hey, look at this!" Besides enjoying the scene, I hope the design and color will excite your senses, that the brushwork and the look of the paint will interest you. (click to read more)

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

Like so many painters, my interest in art started very young. My grade school notebooks were filled with drawings of Davy Crockett, Superman, cowboys and Indians, airplanes and caricatures, to share with my friends. It became evident that art would be a big part of my life. 

The first painters that caught my attention were the awesome masters of the Golden Age of American Illustration and the American Impressionists. I was stunned by those amazing paintings. I graduated from the University of Texas with a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Art, and then earned a Master of Fine Art degree from Syracuse University. After art school, I had a family to care for, and I worked as a freelance illustrator for twenty-five years, which I am so grateful for. More than the abstract impressionism popular in art schools at that time, illustration gave me the solid background in the skills necessary to make strong pictures. I taught drawing and painting while on the faculties of The University of Texas College of Fine Art and Austin Community College. During that time, I was continually studying and learning how to paint. I decided I would focus on becoming the best painter I could be.

On Flat Creek
(click to view)

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

What medium do you use, and why?

Over the years, I have worked with every medium I could get my hands on. Now, other than preparation sketches, all of my work is done in oil. That’s where the fun is for me. I love the paint quality, the expressiveness of brushwork, and the broad variety of technical exploration possible in handling the paint.

What inspires you most?

The out-of-doors world. Most of my paintings begin outdoors, in one way or another. I use my own outdoor paintings, sketches, notes and photographs. That's where the interpretation begins for me. At the beginning, I spent fifteen years painting outdoors to learn first hand the effects of light, shade, color, value and atmosphere. A few of my paintings may be finished on site, but at this point I'm more interested in using my outdoor work as motive and information for work to be completed in my studio. Design inspires me, because that’s what animates the reason I’m making a painting. It all has to do with focus, balance, harmony and simplification.

Blaze of Autumn
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?


I describe what I'm doing as Subjective Realism. Again, although I paint things rooted in representational reality, it isn’t the scene or things in it that inspires me to paint. It’s my interpretation that makes it all fun. The idea for a painting will more or less spring from the study of facts I find to be true in the scene, but they become a resource for what I’m trying to do, rather than the objective. The inspiration is in trying to communicate one thing I respond to, by design.

What techniques have helped you avoid burnout, and to keep your work fresh?

I think we painters all deal with burnout, or we’re not making progress. Painting is not easy, and the intensity of focus, study and work necessary to learn and grow can now and then lead to creative blind alleys that sneak in one way or another. I find that the feelings of being blocked, and unproductive (burnt-out) often are indicators of our approaching readiness to raise our work to the next level. Our brain is working on integrating the skills and understanding of what we think we need to accomplish. It feels as if we’re not getting any “wins” and we’ve lost our creative get up and go. 

Rio Grande Vista
(click to view)

Here’s one way I deal with burnout. Decide not to paint for a while. Intentionally take a break, without a time limit (hours and days undefined). Take out a notebook and pencil. Ask yourself what you’re trying to do in your work. Ask what you want to be doing. Write this stuff down as clearly as you can write, and set it aside. Now, relax, go back to the fundamentals, and consider what can be done with the basic elements and principles of the visual language. (Elements: shape, size, value, color, texture… Principles: dominance, contrast, gradation, repetition with variety, harmony, unity…) Now, get into your collection of samples from two or three of your favorite painters. Pick a few that stand out to you and look for examples of the elements and principles in their work. Final step: Don’t just try to go back to painting. Review some of your own work and ask how you can improve it in some of these specific ways. For re-starters, give yourself an exercise or two that you will use to focus on just one thing at a time. Perform the exercises without any pressure that it must result in “good work”. Loosen up. Relax. Just have fun with it. Reconnect with what you like about painting.

Believe me, you didn’t “trick” yourself into becoming a painter. Our gut wants to grasp the wholeness of what excites us visually, and it likes getting granular about what we CAN DO to get that excitement into our own work.

Taos Blues
(click to view)

What are you focused on learning about right now as an artist?

I’m working on how powerfully simplification affects my work. Simple shapes, simple value and color relationships. Simple everything! These things give me the grist for my mill in creating more effective designs and compositions. Simple relationships give our paintings more vitality, balance and harmony. Clarity in simplification allows our paint handling to grow more confident, and more interesting to viewers.

What makes you happiest about your art?

The ability to communicate to others the beauty I’ve found. To be able to say, “Hey, world, look at this!”, and make it enjoyable and worth their time. I’m not interested in giving a literal account of  ‘things’ or ‘reality’ as I find it. I enjoy using design, color and paint to share something more poetic with the viewer. I think that it's the interpretation that makes the work, and hope you will enjoy being involved.

Late October Noon
(click to view)

Thanks, Jimmy!

© 2020 Sophie Marine