Thursday, July 16, 2020

DPW Spotlight Interview: Megan Aadland

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

From Megan's DPW Gallery Page:

Hello! Thank you for checking out my gallery here on DPW. What a great platform for artists who try to create something new everyday, like myself. I'm a stay-at-home mom who finds her sanity in nature and tries to bring it back to the easel. I live with my husband of thirteen years, two young girls, and a couple of chickens in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. I hope you find something you love here and if you don't, just check back tomorrow!

There is art in the air, the ether, just reach out and take as much as you need.

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

Making art has always been in the background of my life but I never considered it as something special about me. As I got older, I realized, everyone can make art, but they don’t feel enlivened by it, as I do.

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

I took a few art classes here and there as an adult, before children. I actually took a painting class at a very prestigious school and absolutely hated it. It turned me off from making art for a while. Right after my youngest was born, a major solar eclipse occurred, which got me thinking, damn it, life’s too short. Making art again was calling me, and I committed myself to a daily practice.

Antonito Silo
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

Oh gosh, I feel like I’ve tried them all! I often go back and forth between abstraction and representational, acrylic and oil. I’m still learning and get so excited to try new styles.

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

Over the years, I have picked up almost everything and played with it, like how a musician can tinker with lots of instruments. Textile and fiber arts, all the different drawing and painting mediums. I enjoy them all and circle around from time to time. Oil painting feels so good and textural and there is so much to learn, which keeps my brain engaged. I know I could spend a lifetime doing it and still not learn everything there is to know

Pink on Pink
(click to view)

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

In the near future, more plein air is my goal. I just ordered my first pochade box which I am both nervous and excited about. Eventually, I would like to learn to do portraiture, but I would need some serious instruction first, I wouldn’t want to insult anyone with my lack of skills!

Who or what inspires you most?

Travel and trying new things helps to refill the creative well. We live in such a beautiful area, there’s always something happening with the light and weather that makes things appear new, if one only remembers to look! I admire the works of Carol Marine (of course!), Donna Walker, Sharon Schock, Christopher Long, Teddi Parker, so many artists I see on DPW. Passion is catching! Seeing great art in person is even better. Museums and galleries are some of the best places on earth.

The Power of Beauty
(click to view)
Where does the rainbow end, in your soul or on the horizon?” -Pablo Neruda

What does procrastination look like for you?

I don’t feel like I have time to procrastinate too much during this phase of life, I try to just jump in without overthinking too much. Getting started can be the hardest task, knowing you only have an hour to work takes some of the pressure off. If the hour is painful, it’s only an hour. If it’s good, you’ll want to keep going.

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

My kids are still pretty young and home most of the time. Quiet time (read: TV time) for my two kids every afternoon is the deal I make to ensure I get an hour to do whatever I want.

Summer Hike
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

We live in a beautiful area, everywhere I look is inspiring. We have a lot of great parks and trails but I’ve also pulled over on the side of the highway when I’ve felt moved to try and capture something special.

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

When I’m feeling really blocked I usually “take a break” by doing some abstract expressionism acrylic art. Focusing on another creative outlet helps revive me too.

Colorado in the Spring
(click to view)

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

Right now I’m experimenting with not reproducing things exactly as I see them but trying to invoke more feeling and meaning from a painting. I also have so much to learn technically, this past month I focused more on my drawing skills and have already seen a payoff in my painting.

What makes you happiest about your art?

Working with the materials is just plain fun, it doesn’t get any better than having pure pigment at your disposal. Creating something from “nothing” is absolute magic and I feel so fortunate that I get to participate in the concert of creating everyday.

Thanks, Megan!

© 2020 Sophie Marine

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