I chose to do a spotlight focus on John Carter, an oil painter from Chicago. I wanted to focus on an oil painter specifically, so I did a general search for oil painters, which took me to a website for the "Oil Painters of America," which took me to John's website. The first photo below is the very first image I was greeted with. Right off the bat, I can see that John has a tremendous command of color and detail. I enjoy that he keeps his brushwork loose while staying true to the original image. Since I wanted to try doing more oil portraiture, I appreciate that most of his work is figurative, and I can use his paintings for references if needed in the future. I also love the Mediterranean feel of his work. Some of his paintings really look, at least to me, like they could past as old master impressionist painters. I think I could learn a lot from him.
Hanging Laundry (Sorrento Italy), Oil on Canvas, 16x12
I had little to no hope for this painting when I first started out, but she progressed nicely, and I think it pulled together well, here are a few of the shots along the way. I discovered that a more direct technique of painting was more effective than trying to layer the paint. I kept ruining the previous layer when I applied the next coat, so this direct painting helped me a lot.
Amber Golden, art therapist, interviewed by Devyn Powers:
Art therapy is a fun, playful way to process emotions and it can help bridge the gap between the client and the art therapist. Consent seems to play a large role in her work, whether it's what the client wants to do that day, or if they want to share their art. I did not realize she shared the artwork with other people. It’s interesting that she’s working virtually now, due to Covid, and I imagine its a bit of a challenge.
Michael Hibartic, Medical illustrator, interviewed by Kaitlyn Baker:
I did not previously know what a medical illustrator was, or what they did. I kind of thought they only drew things for the little anatomy posters you see in the doctor's office. Michael had a non-traditional college experience, due to tight money, and I think that helps show how you can get just about anywhere no matter how much schooling you actually got. He does a lot of molecular drawings, which are surprisingly in higher demand than traditional medical illustrations. This field is also a lot faster paced than I thought it would be, and is more competitive too.
Lily May is a comic artist living in Richmond. She's a former MLWGS student and went to art school for a few years before dropping out. I enjoyed how dynamic her pieces were, and even though there were several drawing, each one seemed to have been given her full attention. She is without a doubt a very talented artist, and we as high school art students have a lot we could learn from her. She's very present on social media, which is where she finds most of her clients. During her presentation, she emphasized the importance of drawing every day, and practicing whenever you can, which I completely agree with. Art is like a muscle, and you have to use it or loose it. She's definitely going places, and I hope to see her work again soon.
Recently, I interviewed Johanna Minich for an RVA Art Talks video.
Dr. Minich is the curator for the Native American gallery in the VMFA. She’s worked with the museum for almost a decade now and has a PhD in art history.
It was interesting to hear about the curatorial process and how each part fit together. She can find art almost anywhere, wether its directly from the artist, or from collectors who want to donate to the museum. This part of the process is called acquisitions. She is also in charge of negotiating a price, if the piece is not being donated, while keeping her budget in mind. Lastly, she creates the physical exhibition from label writing to positions in the given space.
I was surprised to learn that she went into college thinking she wanted to be a computer science major and design video games. Once she leaned into the art side of the degree, she discovered she enjoyed it more and went with it.
I appreciate that Ms. Miller has traveled so much and that her work is kind of a culmination of all her experiences from all around the world. Travel is some of the best education that someone can get, and she seems very culturally educated. Her traumatic brain injury gives me more respect for her work as a whole, because it does feel almost like someone trying to communicate. There is a pent up energy expressed in her paintings that feels like it would have been a good exercise for her healing.
Her story is amazing, seeing the actual evidence that art can rehabilitate a person.