Thursday, February 25, 2021

DPW Spotlight Interview: Jerry Salinas

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

From Jerry's DPW Gallery Page:

Hello! I live in sunny Phoenix, Arizona for the last fifteen years. I paint people, cityscapes and still lifes. I studied at the great American Academy of Art and at the Palette and Chisel Academy, both in Chicago. I have been mentored by Romel de la Torre for quite sometime. The last twenty-some years I have been an illustrator with a studio in Chicago working remotely. I teach the full-time oil painting program at the prestigious Scottsdale Artist School. If you're ever in town look me up! I like to paint and dance, eat and paint.

What did you want to be growing up?

I always wanted to be an artist. When I was going to graduate high school my parents (Thanks Mom and Dad) asked what art school I was looking into and I haven’t looked back.

I remember my sister sneaking out with my dad’s car and driving all the siblings for a joy ride to Chicago’s downtown area. She pointed to a window on an office building with a man working at a drawing table. She said one day that will be you. I ended up working with an illustration studio in that same building. So, my family was always behind me and I appreciated the confidence they had in me. It helps to grow up with that support.

When did your artistic journey begin?

It truly started when I entered art school. I had some bumps in the road between school and my illustration career.

I always painted but did not decide to do fine art full time until I became fifty years old. My wife said start now, I don’t want you being a bitter old man.

Thanks for all the support, my wife.

Roma
(click to view)

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

Did you have any long periods without creative expression? How did you "get back on the horse"?

After art school I didn’t do any art for three years. I owned a restaurant with my brother. Once I was out I told myself nothing will stop me from being creative. That was a great kick in the pants.

I also have had periods where I can’t finish a painting. My solution to “getting back on the horse” is to pull away and take a break. So, I put the painting aside and do drawing exercises or search out new references for future paintings. I also don’t look at it for a couple of weeks. When I do I come back with a fresh eye.

What mediums and genres do you gravitate to? Which ones don't appeal?

I use mostly oil paint. I also like to draw digitally or with a pen. I love subjects with people in cafes, at farmers markets or on a city street. I love that I can go to a café, take a seat, enjoy a coffee and sweet. I can pull out my sketchbook and draw people with the site and sounds that will hopefully inspire my paintings.

There is nothing I don’t like to paint. I feel my paintings may be figurative but I always add landscapes or still lives as a part of the story. I do love abstract backgrounds done with knives and brushes or whatever I can find to apply the paint. I will use whatever medium, genre or technique to get a painting done.

Street in Italy
(click to view)

What was the process like of pinpointing your personal style or finding your voice?

I think my style came from my influences and the subject matter I paint. I paint more figures so I look at more figurative artist. That feeds into my style.

Name an artist, well-known or not, who you admire. Why?

Wow! I don’t know if I can pick just one. I am inspired by many from all genres of painting. Richard Schmid and all the students who have directly or indirectly been taught or inspired by him would be my choice.

I have been around long enough that I have seen he has influenced many artists and illustrators.

Add Diego Velasquez the great Spanish painter.

Sweets Time
(click to view)

If you could offer one piece of advice to your younger, creative self — what would that be?

Always be fearless and don't worry about what other people say or like. Creativity comes from being an individual.

Do you utilize any habits or tricks for winning the distraction and procrastination battle?

I was an illustrator for many years and have worked with deadlines. Give me a deadline and I will get it done.

If I do procrastinate I make sure I am learning or improving my art during that time.

Vespa Florence Italy
(click to view)

In moments of self-doubt or adversity, how do you push forward?

I teach oil painting at the prestigious Scottsdale Artists School. When facing any doubt or adversity I always think about my students and see how they keep working to get better and be creative.

What are some of your long and short term goals for yourself or your art?

Long term goals are to keep painting and hopefully offer wonderful paintings to my collectors.

Short term I hope add more paint and get a touch more abstract.

Kitchen Staff
(click to view)

What does success mean to you personally?

My success is knowing I have done a painting that a collector would love to purchase because I touched them in some way. Making a living of this crazy business helps.

What is one of your proudest moments in your creative life?

Selling my first painting on Daily Paintworks. If I can do it, you can do it!

Casual Day
(click to view)

Thanks, Jerry!

© 2021 Sophie Marine

Thursday, February 18, 2021

DPW Spotlight Interview: Amy Braswell

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

From Amy's DPW Gallery Page:

Art makes me happy. I am excited each morning to get to my easel to paint or draw. I feel as though I have found the perfect combination of art mediums. My colored pencils and pastels allow me to have precise control with a lot of details. Painting with oils lets me be loose and bold and expressive with my brushstrokes. I paint to feed my own desire to create. My hope is that my artwork will bring joy for others as it does for me when I am creating it.

What did you want to be growing up?

A veterinarian. I have always loved animals, but it ended up that I did not like science classes. I was really good at math and ended up getting an accounting degree.

When did your artistic journey begin?

My entire life, I have loved to create. I taught myself to sew and had a line of children’s clothing when my kids were young. I also taught myself photography and still do a bit of that when approached. But I did not start with art until early 2018. I discovered colored pencils and pastels and decided to try them out and realized I was pretty good at it. I followed some artists on Patreon and learned different things from different artists and improved with each piece I completed. My colored pencil and pastel work are very detailed, and I wanted to try something where I could be looser. A year ago, I ordered some tubes of oil paint and some canvases, picked up a paintbrush and I’ve never looked back!

Yellow Bug
(click to view)

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

Did you have any long periods without creative expression? How did you "get back on the horse"?

There was a lot of time between my sewing/clothing line days and when I picked up a camera and started learning photography. I was raising kids and that was my focus. There was nothing that sparked my interest in photography other than enjoying taking photos and wanting to get better at it. I found myself with a lot of time because my kids were both in college. I am very lucky and have a very supportive husband who lets me try just about anything I want to.  

What mediums and genres do you gravitate to? Which ones don't appeal?

I enjoy oils, colored pencils, and pastels. I tried watercolor early on and my hat is off to all of the watercolor artists out there! I could not handle the lack of control! I am hoping to take an online class with a watercolor artist and try them again. I did not like acrylics because of the quick drying time. I have recently started doing a little needle felting and find that a lot of fun, so we will see where that goes!

Barnyard Piglet
(click to view)

What was the process like of pinpointing your personal style or finding your voice?

Honestly, I’m not sure I have found my personal style yet. I mentioned earlier that my attraction to oils was to be able to paint loose and I don’t feel like I am there yet. Since I haven’t been able to attend any in person oil workshops, I have watched a lot of classes online. I try to take a little bit of what I learn from each artist and apply it to my own work.

As far as finding my voice goes, I feel like I am getting close. I like to tell a story through my paintings and leave it to the viewer to make up their own story when they look at my work. There are many social issues that are important to me such as homelessness, sex-trafficking, and empowering young girls.  Starting this year, I am donating a portion of each sale to one of several organizations I have researched and chosen (the buyer chooses one) that supports these issues.



Name an artist, well-known or not, who you admire. Why?

That would have to be Bonny Snowdon. Not only is she an incredible colored pencil artist, but she is the kindest, most giving person I have ever met. Her desire to help other artists learn and improve their work shines through in her teaching. Another artist and I were able to spend a week with her in 2019 and I feel so fortunate be able to call her my friend after that week. Everyone should go look at her work because it is spectacular.

Ginger Kitty
(click to view)

If you could offer one piece of advice to your younger, creative self — what would that be?

If there is something you want to try, then go for it! Don’t ever underestimate what you can do.



Do you utilize any habits or tricks for winning the distraction and procrastination battle?

I look forward to getting into my studio space every morning. I have so many things that I want to paint, draw, felt, make etc. If I ever do get distracted, all I have to do is think about all of those things! This year, I have started using a planner and that has helped me focus on what my goals are for the week and what I need to try and get accomplished each day to reach that goal. My first grandbaby was born late December and I will admit that she is a distraction, but I don’t mind that!

Willie
(click to view)



In moments of self-doubt or adversity, how do you push forward?

I look at how far I have come and remember how much I love what I do. I have little sticky notes on my easel that say things like, “what if?,” “slow down,” “actually, I can,” “be bold,” etc. They all remind me that it’s my art and there really is no right or wrong way. One of my favorite quotes is “to live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong.”

What are some of your long and short term goals for yourself or your art?

Short term my goal is to continue to work on being looser and more expressive with my brushwork. I am currently taking one of Dreama Tolle Perry’s courses and having a lot of fun. She has a beautiful loose and colorful style and I have picked up a lot of useful tips from her. Long term, I would love to have a body of work that would enable me to have a solo exhibit in a gallery.

Sly
(click to view)

What does success mean to you personally?

To be a good person by helping others, being kind and gracious, choosing happy, staying positive and living the best life you possibly can.



What is one of your proudest moments in your creative life?

I would say when I finished the portrait of my corgi, Moses. It was the first colored pencil portrait I had done where I wasn’t following a tutorial. I gained so much confidence with that piece and never looked back.

Moses
(click to view)

Thanks, Amy!

© 2021 Sophie Marine

Thursday, February 11, 2021

DPW Spotlight Interview: Bebe Keith

Each week we will spotlight a different DPW artist who will give away one of their best paintings. To enter to win Bebe's painting "SK 072 Making a Face" go to Daily Paintworks and click on the link at the top of the page announcing their interview.

From Bebe's DPW Gallery Page:

Bebe is a self-taught artist who likes to laugh. She loves creating and is always looking for ways to stretch and grow as an artist and as a human. For years she did stained glass mosaics, but then she tried making a mosaic with paper and was so excited that she sold all of her glass! Along with the paper mosaic collages, she is currently creating portraits with watercolors and loving it! She has been doing a watercolor every day since July 2020. (click to read more)

What did you want to be growing up?

An artist. I was that kid who drew all of the time. I remember a teacher that really supported me as well, and my family liked my drawings. But I ended up teaching elementary school instead. I guess I didn’t think that being an artist was a viable career when I got a little older.

SK 072 Making a Face
(click to view)

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

When did your artistic journey begin? 

After teaching for twelve years, I went back to school for graphic design. I was itching for something new to do and I always loved art, even though I didn’t really do it much myself anymore. While I was going to school for graphic design, I found that I had a lot of extra time on my hands (teachers are BUSY!) so I decided to teach myself how to make a stained glass mosaic.

I entered it in the fine arts competition at the Minnesota State Fair and it won a ribbon. It’s very competitive just to get in, so it was quite an honor. It was very encouraging and ultimately led me away from graphic design and towards fine art and a career as an artist.

I was soon creating mosaics for galleries, and then for public spaces like hospitals and clinics and libraries. This led me to start working with fabricators to make the work I design, such as glass walls, metal work, a suspended large glass sculpture and terrazzo floors. I’m currently working on a terrazzo floor design for a community college.

However, after years of making glass mosaics, I switched to paper mosaics a few years ago, and now I’m REALLY into drawing and watercolor and gouache and colored pencils and ink! And collage, still, too! I love learning and exploring and being creative!

If you are interested in seeing my public art, glass mosaic or paper mosaic collage work, you can find pictures on my website: https://www.bebekeith.com


SK 218 Look Inside
(click to view)

She thought sometimes that the best way to see was to close her eyes and look inside.​

What mediums and genres do you gravitate to? Which ones don't appeal?

Last spring I decided to give myself a little at home residency. This is something I have to demand of myself – the freedom to explore. I am usually so focused on goals, such as making enough art for galleries or hunting for the next public art project and everything must be for sale. So I told myself to leave that notion at the door and gave myself a chance to explore new materials. I have always loved faces, but I have learned from galleries that they aren’t big sellers so I often stay away. So I decided to make faces. Mine, to be specific. I tried acrylic paint then oils. But I was completely sold when I tried watercolors! 

By then I was ready for some new faces. I joined Sktchy and in early July I decided that I was going to do a face a day for a year. I’m still in the middle of that project and still in love with faces and watercolor! 

SK 220 Circling the People I Love Best
(click to view)

Sometimes she wondered how long it would take to draw circles around all of the people she loved best.

What was the process like of pinpointing your personal style or finding your voice?

I’m developing it every day on Sktchy. I’ve always liked really graphic contrasts like lines and borders and patterns as well as a clean and fresh feeling. And I’ve always been over the moon about color! So I’m playing with those things and adding more materials like ink and colored pencils and gouache. I don’t want my art to look like anyone else’s art so it’s fun to be innovative.

A couple of weeks ago I decided to add a short narrative to each piece. You can read them if you click on any of my very recent work. I love writing and it adds a lot to the character and backstory to add that narrative. I hope people enjoy them!

Just this week I decided to print off some of the faces and cut them out and put them into a collage and use ink for embellishments. I love metal leafing, too. I love not quite knowing what is next! 

SK 234 Why He Started
(click to view)

He wasn't exactly sure how to proceed but he knew it was important to remember why he started.



Name an artist, well-known or not, who you admire. Why?

Every person who tries to make some art, without making excuses or cutting themselves down if it’s not perfect – they are my heroes! You have to be brave to be an artist and put something you made out there into the world. I admire everyone who does it!

If you could offer one piece of advice to your younger, creative self — what would that be?

Everything in my life has led me to the happy and fulfilled person I am now. I don’t regret a thing. My younger, creative self needed no correction! I just made art because it I liked it. A perfect reason to do it.



SK 233 Make a Difference
(click to view)

It was just a little thing and she didn't know if it would make a difference or not, but that little thing joined with all of the other little things and made a difference.

Do you utilize any habits or tricks for winning the distraction and procrastination battle?

I’m not a procrastinator. If I can spend a few minutes and take something off of my plate now, why wait? (I’m filling out this interview just minutes after I received it from Daily Paintworks!) ;)



In moments of self-doubt or adversity, how do you push forward?

When my husband had open heart valve surgery a few years ago, I made a collage in the waiting room. The activity comforted me.

SK 232 Sharing Her Light
(click to view)

She felt the fire within her and warmed those around her with her flame, sharing her light with the world.

What are some of your long and short term goals for yourself or your art?

Like I mentioned earlier, I like not knowing what is next creatively. That being said, I have a show of the faces in July and may have a couple of other shows, both rescheduled and new. I continue making paper mosaic collages for galleries. And I have the terrazzo floor project this year, and potentially another floor after that. In my art, I just want to keep on being creative and see where it leads me!

What does success mean to you personally?

Being happy and healthy and creative. That’s success!

I would like to thank DailyPaintworks for being a nice option that makes it easy for people to sell their work, be part of a community and encourages daily art creation! Thank you!

Thanks, Bebe!

© 2021 Sophie Marine

Thursday, February 4, 2021

DPW Spotlight Interview: Tammy Pozayt

Each week we will spotlight a different DPW artist who will give away one of their best paintings. To enter to win Tammy's painting "Bird" 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 don’t remember a time in my life that I was not at a minimum sketching something on scrap paper. Drawing was by far my first and most-used artistic endeavor. It was my go to for many, many years. High school was where I finally got a chance to attend full classes dedicated to watercolor, drawing and oil paint. That was home for me. I always struggled feeling like I belonged somewhere, but these classes gave me exactly that, and my teachers always singled me and my work out. I sold my first oil painting to one of the high school teachers who saw my work in the art display there. And though I randomly sold commissions on and off for years, the spark for color didn’t happen seriously until maybe seven or eight years ago. It was teaching art to the kids at our homeschool co-op. There is something about teaching others that makes you hungry to learn more and more and more… I think it may have grown into a slight addiction since then!

Bird
(click to view)

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

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

I’m not sure I would ever call it a career exactly, for it’s never been something that could at all support me, but yes, for sure. I took a very long break from it after getting married, working for four years, then having four children and being a stay-at-home-mom who homeschools. As I mentioned, it wasn’t until I started teaching art for our homeschool co-op that I started really feeding the hunger that had been quietly stewing back there in the background all that time. But it had always been there, and I realized later that even when I was not actively painting, I was always having some creative outlet, whether it was making elaborate birthday cakes, or sewing baby quilts, or knitting blankets, or even just having fun doing intricate braids in my sweet daughter’s hair.

Daffodils
(click to view)

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

Pencil, colored pencil, pastel, watercolor, acrylic (fast-drying, slow-drying, and Interactive), oil paint, gouache, casein. Every medium seems to have things I love and hate about it! As far as genres, portraits of animals and people have always been what I am most drawn to (though perhaps the most challenging), though I try to mix it up with landscapes, flowers, and still life.

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

Watercolor and oil have been what I currently reach for, though I constantly find myself still going back to all the others on and off, usually when I am frustrated with my current choice of medium and its submission to my suggestions! Honestly, I love things about each and every one of them. I love the brushwork you can accomplish only with oil, and I love the glazing that I can accomplish with acrylics, and I love the explosions and integrations of color and glazes with watercolor. I have struggled finding myself as an artist because I cannot seem to keep to one medium or another, and I cannot seem to choose. As far as what’s fallen away, colored pencil and pastels fall into that category. I’ve done some neat things with both of them, and I love the work that other artists are able to do with these mediums. And in some ways, I was super drawn to them because you are working dry, like with pencil, which I’m good at. I like that control. Sometimes a paintbrush feels so uncontrollable! However, for me, colored pencil was too tedious, and I am not that patient. And I love the idea of pastels, but the mess is a bit much for me to bear. And it has such special needs for framing and preserving and transporting.

Study Time
(click to view)

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

I am really trying to hone in the ones that I already do, though I have been playing more with gouache and casein, and they have been a lot of fun to experiment with, though I am still trying to figure out how to take advantage of their special characteristics. I do like that they both seem to play well with watercolor, so that is something to explore and play with.


Who or what inspires you most?

Reading art books from people like Carol Marine or Mary Whyte or Patti Mollica, watching videos on artistnetwork.com or even just YouTube videos from really talented artists. I am also inspired when my work blesses someone else. It gives it purpose beyond the selfish motivation (which is not invaluable, but like a book that is never read, what’s the point). And like I mentioned, teaching always seems to inspire me to go back to my easel at home and play with paint!



Friends
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

I am not a procrastinator by nature (unless it’s something I really don’t want to do, and painting definitely does not fall into that category), so I am not sure it looks like much for me in regards to painting. Frankly, I take whatever chance I can get to get a few brushstrokes in. Now, procrastinate on the pile of dishes in my peripheral vision while I am working on my painting across the kitchen? Yeah, maybe.

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

Painting is something that I fit into the nooks and crannies of my busy homeschooling, house-keeping, wife-being day, and some days, it just can’t happen, but never for too many days in a row. I kind of feel like it’s in me, just needing to come out. It’s just who I am, who God made me. And sometimes, it will be day after day of terrible paintings and I am sure that I have lost every possible inkling of how to paint, but I’d like to think that I am at least learning what not to do on the next attempt when that happens. Also, as far as making time, there is an advantage to having my “pseudo-studio” in the kitchen, the hub of my home. I always see it, and that paper or gessobord and paintbrushes are just sitting there out in the open, enticing me toward them all day long! More than once my kids have been waiting patiently at the table for our next school subject because I took the short break to add a few strokes to my latest work.



Ballerina
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

My “art studio” is my kitchen desk, and sometimes the sunroom if the weather is nice enough, so I don’t have a lot of space to have a still life set-up. My ideas usually come from photos that I take, usually involving my children or pets (or friends’ children or pets), as they are the ones nearby (and awfully cute in my opinion). Shockingly, these not super-willing subjects don’t last more than about 30 seconds when I ask them to pose for me, so I have to make do with a sneaked photo when they are not paying attention. I am constantly looking for that special “moment,” or just ideas that could be made into a good composition. I do try to come up with non-figurative work too, though it does not come as naturally to me. Some of my best still-lives have come into fruition because the sun will be streaming through the windows, and I’ll use that moment to set up my still life and snap pictures of it with that dramatic light creating all kinds of fun shadows and highlights. And when I run out of decent photos of my own, I certainly rely on pixabay.com for their generous free offerings of photos to work from.

Joy
(click to view)



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

I think just always trying to be better. Always growing as an artist. I struggle with thinking a painting is ever “good enough.” And the fact is, it never will be. But I wonder if even the best artists out there feel that way: that they wish their painting was just a little bit better. Well, to constantly be growing and learning must be our focus. There will always be a better artist out there. I find I must just focus on who I am as an artist, and build on that. As long as I do that, my work will always be evolving, hopefully for the better.

Pointe Shoe Day
(click to view)

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

To stop fiddling. I have the unhappy tendency to overwork things, and I have destroyed perfectly decent paintings by my just-one-more-stroke mentality. I am working on being more deliberate with each stroke, with each color. Some of my favorite paintings I’ve done are the ones that I’ve spent the least amount of time on. And that was surprising to me at first, but it makes sense the more I’ve learned, because the more time I spend on it, the more apt I am to turn it all into mud instead of letting the eye fill in the more abstract but cleaner marks. 

What makes you happiest about your art?

When the vision I have actually translates to the finished piece, i.e. when a painting works, and when it blesses someone’s life.

Thanks, Tammy!

© 2021 Sophie Marine

Thursday, January 28, 2021

DPW Spotlight Interview: Ekaterina Prisich

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

From Ekaterina's DPW Gallery Page:

Hello! I'm a Siberian artist and designer. In my paintings, I pay attention to the harmony and beauty of simple moments of life and elements of nature.

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

I can say that I have been painting for as long as I can remember. This hobby began in childhood. Over time, I entered art school and became more seriously engaged in painting and arts and crafts. It so happened that after leaving school, I connected my life with art too.

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

Although I always understood that I loved painting, I decided to get a modern profession. So I entered the graphic design department at university to study computer programs, typography, art history, and other interesting disciplines. After graduating, I got a job in my specialty, and at that time I practically stopped painting. This period lasted about five years. Only in the spring of 2020 I plunged headlong into the world of paints and canvases again.

Pomegranate fruit on branches
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

Thanks to studying at the Faculty of Arts, I was able to try myself in painting, drawing, graphics and sculpture. Much has been studied in genres: from still life and landscape to portrait and figure composition. I was also fond of fashion illustration and botanical painting.

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

Currently, I am fascinated by the search for harmonious color combinations when depicting landscapes with acrylics, as well as painting plants in watercolors. Sometimes I paint portraits of people and animals. But I can say that graphics and drawing are not very attractive to me now, perhaps I will return to this later.

Burnt orange abstract landscape
(click to view)

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

Even during my studies at the university, I really liked working with clay, these were educational works like bas-reliefs and copies of heads of famous sculptures. Now I would like to learn how to make real ceramics and dishes. It just fascinates me to watch the work on the potter's wheel. It would be great to master this technique and deal with glazing and firing.

Who or what inspires you most?

My parents instilled in me a great love for the plant world. My mother is a biologist by education, and now she and my father are engaged in the cultivation of flowers and fruit trees. I always get a huge portion of inspiration when I come to visit them, walk in the greenhouse and my mother enthusiastically tells me about her wards. It is especially impressive when, amid the frosty Siberian winter, I find myself in a real blooming garden. Perhaps this greatly influenced my work, botanical watercolors are my love!

Sunset light in a mountain village
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

Most of the time, I have no difficulty getting started, as I enjoy painting, priming canvases and packing. Although sometimes I feel a great desire to draw, but all the ideas seem somehow inappropriate. And then I spend a lot of time looking for a new inspirational idea.

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

I have identified for myself several main areas of life, which I always pay attention to. Art is one of those things so I have a dedicated time for painting almost every day.

Apple branch
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

I have several ways. Sometimes I am so impressed by nature, moments from life, plants, color combinations that they do not leave my head until they are expressed on canvas or paper. Also, my mother sends me a lot of beautiful photos of her plants. Often I have a desire to make something specific and I look for suitable references on the Internet.

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

Probably, due to the fact that I have been painting on a regular basis recently, I have not yet had time to burn out. This activity inspires me. Of course, I take breaks from time to time, I leave for nature or the countryside to see my parents. This allows me to miss painting and return to it with renewed vigor.

Rose hip watercolor
(click to view)

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

Now I am perfecting the composition and coloring of my paintings. Working with color fascinates me so much, I look for harmonious combinations and begin to see them where I have not noticed before. I am surprised to find that even a gray cloudy day begins to play with new colors, and I am becoming fans of those artists whose work I could not understand before. It's so wonderful to look at old things and see something new.

What makes you happiest about your art?

My art gives me peace and confidence. I really missed it before. I constantly doubted whether I was on the right path before I returned to painting. Now I feel that I am doing what I really like and that makes me happy.

Floral painting Original art Boho Flowers artwork
(click to view)

Thanks, Ekaterina!

© 2021 Sophie Marine

Thursday, January 21, 2021

DPW Spotlight Interview: Judy Rath

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

From Judy's DPW Gallery Page:

I have been drawing all of my life. I am a self-taught artist and, while the internet is a wonderful place full of information to be learned, I fall back on my father’s teaching and my basic skills which include observation and interpretation.

Nature is my home. It teaches me endurance with pain and distress, joy in its constancy, relief in its solitude and knowledge that everything passes eventually and, despite all of the destruction humans visit upon it, it still stands strong. It will be here long after we are gone, still immutable, still beautiful.

Human structures are all simply tents, blowing in the wind and standing for just moments. We can celebrate them as temporary homes but our only true home is this earth and all it gives us. I paint that home, that awesome, welcoming, forbidding, vista of this land that I love.

Welcome to my home, our magnificent earth.

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

I’ve been painting and drawing all of my life but I only started to invest regular time in it in 2015. I set up a small area in my house as a work space and started playing with various media. Being retired made it so I wasn’t fighting work and housework to find time to paint. I had been making jewelry and was in a gallery in my town but decided to paint instead. I dove in headfirst and have never stopped and my studio grew with it.

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

You know, I hesitate to call it a career as it is just part of me from as far back as I can remember, but, sure; family, jobs, life all gave me months and years of “stops and starts.” I always found time to sit and draw, though. Painting was added as my children left home but work still was the most critical. Food and shelter, etc. Retirement gave me all the time I wanted.

Soaring Sky
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

Which haven’t I? LOL! I need to be clear that I have no formal art training. I started with encaustics in 2015 and added acrylics, resin and alcohol inks. I dropped the encaustics and did mostly acrylic pours with resin and alcohol inks with resin, too. I enjoyed that for awhile but alcohol inks fade in UV light so I couldn’t sell originals, only giclees. Also, I found resin needed a clean room as dust and fur show and we have pets. You can guess my frustration!

I also am more of a representational artist and while I enjoy the occasional abstract, it’s not my forte. I wanted more control over my medium and acrylics gave me that but the fast drying time made it a challenge. I tried pastels and fell in love with them immediately and have been using them for almost a year now. I can make them as loose or as controlled as I wish.

Which ones have “stuck” and which ones have fallen away?

Pastels are my preference; acrylics, resin and alcohol inks occasionally. I’ve never been interested in oils and encaustics aren’t for me, either.

Sierra Nevada Morning
(click to view)

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

I can’t think of any. I’m still learning about the ones I use.

Who or what inspires you the most?

Nature. This earth. The fact that it has and will survive everything humans can do or have done to it and still be the source of life, amazes me. We are so blessed and so many don’t ever think of it or stop to consider that, in the scheme of things, we are truly not that important. We are part of nature, not in charge of it and, as much as we destroy, it continues to thrive. Change, yes, but it will be here long after we are gone.

Twilight at Deer Meadow
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

My house. I don’t procrastinate with art, I procrastinate with housework. I’ll walk right by dust, unmade beds, etc. to get to my studio. I’ve put in too many years cleaning to give it anymore of my time, unless it’s absolutely necessary like kitchen (I love to cook) and bathrooms (thank goodness for Clorox). Those get attention.

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

Self interest and ignoring other things that need doing. I used to be a pleaser but, in my older years I’ve realized that I want to do what I want to do and, as long as I’m not hurting anyone, that’s what’s happening. I do work around appointments and the few commitments I make but those are few and far between now. I’m a hermit naturally so this year hasn’t been that much of a change. I paint when I want to. It’s lovely!

Kent Pond, VT
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

I’d say the internet is my greatest source. I have a few photographers who have given me permission to use their work and public domain photos are a great source. My work doesn’t involve political or social commentary, other than respect of nature and the earth. It’s hard to miss/ignore the beauty of our world, even the smallest blade of grass has its place.

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

With everything out there from grass to trees to earth and sky, how could anything I paint not be full of wonder? There’s nothing more beautiful and “fresh” than every bit of nature!

Sunset at Flat Creek
(click to view)

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

I assume you mean techniques and art education and I admit I know none of this. I tried to learn all of the “rules” about composition, value, depth, structure, notans, etc. and I found it turned my pleasure into displeasure, made it a job instead of fulfillment, so I stopped “learning” and just painted. I’m not advocating that for anyone else. I’m just an untrained artist and, without an impressive CV, I don’t expect to be taken seriously. That’s fine. I love what I do.

What makes you happiest about your art?

Making it. Sitting down at my easel and choosing the substrate, the medium, the colors and using those as I choose. Some work well right away, some don’t but it’s all joy. I love sitting down and losing myself and coming back to awareness hours later. There’s nothing else like it and, as long as I’m able, that’s what I’ll do.

Western Highlands, Scotland
(click to view)

Thanks, Judy!

© 2021 Sophie Marine

Thursday, January 14, 2021

DPW Spotlight Interview: Ans Debije

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

From Ans's DPW Gallery Page:

18th of Januari 2020

I am proud to say that I have won the third prize with my painting ‘Starring’ in the 'Painting of the year 2019' competition. It is absolutely fantastic that my paintings were immediately sold during the opening of the exhibition at Kunstzaal van Heijningen in The Hague (the Netherlands)! 

The jury's judgment is as follows:

A great work in its expression despite the small size. A daring classic and therefore timeless work. The background is perfect in its simplicity and the limited space is optimally utilized. From a distance it is a very photorealistic work with a fantastic material expression and up close it is an almost modern and expressionist work with large brush strokes. The painting is painted ton sur ton with a limited palette and consists of only exciting parts.

(click to read more)

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

From an early age I have loved drawing and painting. On my fifteenth birthday I got a set of oil paint and I started a short course in oil painting. The teacher must have been a fan of Dali because the works I have left from that time all have something surrealistic about them.

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

After high school I was accepted at the Art Academy in Rotterdam, but also at the Design Academy in Eindhoven. I had to choose and chose the latter. I don't regret it, but it did mean that the freedom of painting was considerably limited by the fact that what you create had to be applicable to the consumer market. I chose to design interior and fashion fabrics.

Witzig
(click to view)

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

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

Over the years I have tried many techniques and mediums. Watercolor, ink, mixed media and printing techniques such as monotype and drypoint etching. I wanted to make larger works and therefore started painting with acrylic on large canvases. I also used multiple mediums on those large canvases such as modeling paste, sand, pieces of patterned fashion fabrics, acrylic and oil paint to create textures. At that time I used the oil paint very diluted with a painting medium to let it run as a transparent layer over parts of the painting.

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

At the moment I only paint with oil paint on a small sized panel (up to 12 x 16 inch).

Unadorned
(click to view)

Which ones are you looking forward to exploring?

The development towards new techniques is gradual and sometimes occurs 'by accident'. The thought of having to radically renew my style or technique from one moment to the next paralyzes me. I had one of my small paintings (Nikka whisky from the barrel) enlarged to 75 x 55 inches, printed in 3D on Dibond (aluminum). It's impressive! I would like to try in the future if it is possible to paint it directly in that size and with the same look as the little ones. A challenge, I don't have the strength, the space and money for it right now.

Who or what inspires you most?

I lost my job about two years ago. All of a sudden I had time to paint more often. I was already working on still lifes but wanted to paint more loosely. During a search on the internet a painting by Carol Marine came across. Her story about daily painting immediately appealed to me. No more staring at a large blank canvas for weeks, but just making a tiny painting every day, yay!

I try to make an impression of the object with as few brushstrokes as possible. Sarah Sedwick's tutorials on Stroke Economy are very helpful. So many good artists from past and present are an inspiration to me.

White balsamico
(click to view)

What does procrastination look like for you?

Sometimes, to postpone painting, I would go to thrift stores in search of small utensils with a quaint look. Now that all stores are frequently closed due to the Corona lockdown, I don't get out very often. So no procrastination, but work with what I can find around the house. I now know that you don't need to have any special things. The way you paint something makes it special.

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

I still get up every morning with the happy thought that I can paint another day!

Nikka whisky from the barrel
(click to view)

How do you generally arrive at ideas for your paintings?

I almost always have still life as a subject. For me it is important that the light does something special with the object that I want to paint. I spend a lot of time setting up and lighting a still life.

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

I enjoy looking at the work of others. At the moment mainly via social media and the internet. I look forward to the time when the museums can reopen. Together with my three painter friends we are a group that meets twice a month. Sometimes we paint and sometimes we chat all evening. I have to admit that I don't get outside enough at the moment. I think it's a joy to play a round of golf. That is actually the only time that I am outside in nature. Something completely different from painting. I should do that more often.

Up close
(click to view)

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

I have to learn not to be too critical of myself and my work. Easier said than done.

What makes you happiest about your art?

It's great that my art is increasingly appreciated and bought by people all over the world. I paint with great pleasure and it is nice to know that people enjoy it!

Grape Escape
(click to view)

Thanks, Ans!

© 2021 Sophie Marine

Thursday, January 7, 2021

DPW Spotlight Interview: Stephanie Penman

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

From Stephanie's DPW Gallery Page:

Most women shop for shoes or clothing, I buy art supplies. I am happiest when I am creating, painting, making jewelry, sewing or even hammering nails into boards. My father was a commercial artist, so I grew up with art supplies at my fingertips. To this day my “go to” cutting tool is a razor blade and if I’m gluing something together it probably will involve rubber cement. My father’s paintings line every wall of my parent’s home (and a few of mine). I am in awe of each and every one. I photograph small sections of them and try to copy and learn from them. When my dad’s eyesight made it too difficult for him to paint, he offered me his acrylics and oil paints as well of any of his brushes – I took them home determined to find that talent hidden somewhere in me. That was early 2014, since then I have been waking up every morning to the inspirational artists of DPW, and dabbling in my basement studio as much as possible.  It is time to stop WATCHING, and start DOING!! So here goes nothing!

Tell us a bit about how you first started painting.

I truly cannot pin point a single event or time when I started painting. I learned about DPW probably through Pinterest and was intrigued. I bought Carol’s book Daily Painting and was inspired. Because I was working it was difficult to carve out time to paint every day, but fortunately I am a morning person, so I started using that time for painting and experimenting. My father was a commercial artist who worked out of a studio in our house. He was the original Mr. Mom working from home and taking care of four kids while my mom worked as a nurse. We always had markers, paint, rubber cement and canvases to play with, but none of us followed in his footsteps. Actually until I started painting myself, I never fully appreciated his amazing talent, which is sad. Now I wish he were here to guide me and answer questions, sometimes I think he is doing just that, only remotely.

What mediums and genres have you experimented with?

I love crafting and making art. If anything, I have probably dabbled in too many mediums. I have never met an art supply I didn’t like… as is evident by my studio area. I make jewelry, even have taken classes in the lost art of wax casting. Lately I have been experimenting with collage, making my own painted Yupo paper. I have taken a classes in printmaking and really love Linoleum Block carving - may try to add that to my “to do” list this year.

Just For You
(click to view)

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

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

I mostly work in acrylics, they are way more forgiving. I want to spend more time experimenting in oil, but I always manage to make excuses like “maybe next week” or “after I get back from my next trip.” I don’t know why but they seem like such a big commitment with mediums and solvents and clean-up. I think I just need to sign-up for an Oil Painting for Beginners class and just dive in.

Which ideas are you looking forward to exploring?

Maybe trying to work more with a limited palette and get more comfortable with color mixing. Master flesh tones and paint more people. Also, fluid acrylics, they are so vibrant – I want to work them into my process.

Hanging Out
(click to view)

Who or what inspires you most?

I love nature and the Southwest. Hummingbirds and cactus fascinate me. The Grand Canyon and Sedona are magical.

All the other artists on DPW inspire me to keep going and put in the time. It took me probably three years to get up enough courage to join DPW and I posted my 62nd painting the other day. I don’t want to tell you how many are in the basement in the “to be burned” pile.

A trip to an art museum or gallery can always inspire me, or a nice long hike.

What does procrastination look like for you?

Spending time scrolling through social media sites, looking at other people’s art, photographs on sites like Pixabay and PaintMyPhoto looking for inspiration. Full blown procrastination usually results in me going to TJ Maxx or Target.

Summer Fun
(click to view)

What has helped you to grow as an artist?

People that support and encourage me. I can always count on my sister to be an objective critic. She and I have been carving out time to paint together which is difficult because we live over 1000 miles apart, but we have had many Sister Paintalongs that have been very productive. Sometimes we paint from the same reference photo and the results are so different, I just love that.

I think workshops are great because you get to try things from a different artist’s perspective and it is a forced chunk of time just to work on art. Covid has put a damper on this, but hopefully soon we can return to some semblance of normalcy.

I love studying other artists that I admire, their brushstrokes, color palette, background, etc. I am so thankful to artists who share their knowledge on social media, with videos or progress photos.

Listening to art podcasts also helps my growth. Learn to Paint with Kelly Ann Powers and Studio Insider – Susan Nethercote are my go-to's.

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

I started using a planner about a year and a half ago and it has been a game changer. I write in everything I want to get done that day with a little box next to it. I may be a bit over the top about this, I even include nine boxes that are for my seventy-two oz of water that I try to drink. The satisfaction I get when I check those boxes keeps me going. I think it makes me feel somewhat in control of my life.

I mark out time just to plan art… like, “come up with three reference photos” or “photograph still lifes of XYZ.”

Intense Stare
(click to view)

What is your biggest challenge as a professional artist?

Becoming one. Finding my style. My father was a very realistic painter and I tend to gravitate to that even though I would like to paint “looser.”

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

This year I am signed up for two online fifty-two week courses. One is more “art play” and the other is Miniature Workshop by Jed Dorsey – I love his use of light and shadows. I am hoping these will push me creatively.

Also, if I’m not feeling like painting, I don’t force it. Sometimes not painting and doing something else, like reading a magazine or taking a walk is all I need to send me running back to the easel. I trip to Dick Blick or Michael’s can help too.

Untitled
(click to view)

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

I am learning to be patient with myself and if it isn’t working take a break, don’t force it. Keep going!

What makes you happiest about your art?

Turning on the music and losing myself. Time flies in the studio (aka basement).

I love the connection my art has with my dad (who passed away last year) and my sister.

Wonderful Weeds
(click to view)

Thanks, Stephanie!

© 2021 Sophie Marine