Similarly to my wishing to create interiors that capture our memories, I want to make Interior Design and Architectural renderings relevant today.
These scenes are such a lost art. We are captivated by images in Architectural Digest; the way others, more important and wealthy than ourselves, live, but there is indeed a richer beauty in these spaces. It is just not necessarily captured by a camera lenses but it is captured by living within our day.
This is how and what I strive to capture in my paintings.
Like all of us, our ideas are usually inspired by those people and things surrounding us. Many of my own concepts come in time, spurred from conversations I am part of or overhear and then ruminate over.
I tend to muddle things when I try to come by them myself. It is with such regret that I realize I am a rambler. I can’t stand it when people ramble, (and yet I am one so I must accept them with open hands). I’m an over-tryer and a teacher’s pet. These have the appearance of being good things, but they are not always good when you find yourself trying to blaze a new trail.
The downside to being an extrovert who is trying to make a life in art and writing cohesive thoughts concerning this process is that for two years now, I’ve spent all my energy living in the moments and with people instead of taking time to actually work through all my thoughts and emotions on a platform which I can share: Drawing and painting. I may argue that some of these elating moments are lost due to not properly taking time to appreciate them after the fact.
That’s why I want to paint them, friends. I want to paint my own moments and I want to paint your moments for you. And at some point perhaps you will also come to see the beauty in art of interiors and architecture for its own right.
I do value the time I am able to spend alone with my own thoughts and apply what I experience to my life and work; however, specifically in today’s society with all the social media we have to keep up with on a personal and professional level, there is very little time for self-reflection.
Perhaps people don’t want to reflect on themselves. The effect this is having on art today is so fascinating to me.
Here is how I came about this very obvious fact on the last weekend in May.
My bestie and I were sitting at the end of a long, sleek bar with my husband soaking in the rag time band at one of our dear friends’ weddings, when we began discussing the art adorning the walls and the design of the 1920s. Mimosa’s in hand we occasionally would casually tap our toes along with the rhythm, and pause to joyously clap and cheer.
The whole day evoked an elegant Gatsby kind of feeling and I promise you it was not simply the fact that we were at F. Scott’s in Georgetown.
What was so fabulous about the 1920s art and design, we ruminated, is that those living in the time were so excited about the future and the movement and the speed which they could travel. In Baz Luhrmann's rendition of the Great Gatsby he summarized Fitzgerald’s scene of the New York City,
“The buildings were higher.
The parties were bigger.
The morals were looser and the liquor was cheaper.”
All of art and design was affected by the new achievement in technology. Metal used for furniture to architecture was bent in fluid curves that mimicked the speed of the trains. This stylized approach also seeped into art as we saw; the women’s shoulders depicted in a Monte Carlo’s beach scene on the black walls of the speak easy were rounded with more eccentricity than the Mona Lisa. The 1920’s are as stylized as the Egyptian paintings.
And now, 2015, where are we? As a whole, interior design went quite neutral and frankly, often times pretty boring. The white living room is gorgeous, but somewhat impractical, and therefore those of us who must stoop to actually sitting on our own sofa, do not afford ourselves the frustration of our dark wash jeans rubbing off on our white linen. So we got beige. We were affected by the ever changing trends and we want the big items to be timeless so we can change the pillows and still be up to date.
I know. That by now, if you have read ANY decorating based blog you have come upon that bit of “designer advice.”
And where has 2015 brought us in art and design? Beyond pillows, I mean.
My BFF stated so matter-of-factly, as she is prone to do, and is just one reason she is, indeed, my bff (not a rambler!) “Things are very graphic and iconographic.”
I stared seemingly blankly at the Monte Carlo poster. Then at her.
She’s always one to cut to the chase and see it how it is; instead of oversaturating and thinking too hard.
Yes, of course, all the fashion illustrators are doing this. The Hess sisters and Garance Dior are pretty graphic and so stylized right now. And everyone is eating it up. David Downton has always had a graphic edge. This is the new movement and illustrators and artists are taking note.
We, as people, have no time to self-reflect. We have too much Instagram and snapchat to catch up on. We have no time to waste on something that isn’t what we want to see. Art has to give the same immediate gratification we expect of everything else in our lives these days. Look where the impressionist’s approach to art has brought us!
But it is true! I’m a big instagrammer , pinterester, (Now snapchatter!) and online shopper. And honestly, sometimes I’m able to go through an entire page on a website or my Instagram feed from the past 24 hours barely looking; and my fingers never stop scrolling. There are elements that I’m looking for to cause me to pause and double tap an image or pin it to a board. The more tailored to me the better, right? (What do I care if someone somewhere in a dark dungeon is lurking and tracking and cacheing my every click? ::**click click click**::)
In all this, life continues to happen. Whether we are on our phones or not. Whether you’re looking or not. Whether you’re paying attention or you have to read about it on The Skimm later.
I am indeed beginning to see myself in a true light which illuminates my old fashionedness. I believe in self-reflection. We can’t keep up with it all and we can’t make everyone happy. You must trudge along and revel in the beautiful moments and places and spaces you are given.
What I am saying is, there is beauty in your everyday experience. You’re living after all. Isn’t that a beautiful thing?
My art challenges you to think about a real life moment you love or have loved, and put the image up to remind you of it, even if it is in a fleeting moment between following my last update of cerulean blue on snapchat and your twitter feed where you will see that I dipped my paint brush in my coffee this morning.
As far as the graphic movement of art and design, the challenge as an artist is to take a concept and make it your own. Whatever it is that so compels you. I am excited about what is to come and the new challenges that befall me and my art. Is the graphic art in today’s world devoid of this rich connection we have with shadowed landscapes? It certainly seems as though it takes away any personal emotion to the image.
While I am finding myself in love with fashion illustration in this graphic tone, I’m still finding my voice in depicting it graphically. Until then, you’ll see me working it out via Instagram, and perhaps you might wish to play the art collector and commission a piece.
My old fashioned heart still soaks up the moment the sun drenches through a tree in full bloom against a row home façade and trickles through the peony’s in it’s window boxes. Light and shadow defines us in a way that can be interpreted, and reinterpreted by every artist without fear of redundancy. For this, I love my light and shadow.
Now I must leave you to pack for this weekend's wedding! Which began, as I recall when speaking to the bride upon her engagement, with the concept of glamping. (Yes, sir or madam, that is a real thing. Probably the only kind of camping you would find me doing....)
Fear not, dear friends, as this wedding did spur some new art of it's own, you will see it in good time.