This post is the second in my new series, “I support creative practicing”. Over the course of the next few weeks I will be sharing some of the creative souls that help me to grow as an artist. Each of them openly acknowledges who pushes them to grow their art. Each of them supports the process of creative practicing. Soaking it all in, learning from all sorts of creatives and then turning it all into something that they can call their own. As it should be. Seriously.
I have been asked to be a part of an upcoming class, Studying Under the Masters hosted by Jeanne Oliver and includes 7 other amazing artists. The premise of the class is that each of us will study under a master artist as an apprentice. I will be focusing on Georgia O’Keeffe and copying her work and studying her as an apprentice would. I will (hopefully) take bits and pieces of what I learned from her and turn them into something that is all mine.
This week I am happy to share the very talented girl that has the best name ever (I wonder why?!), danielle daniels.
Tell me about what is sitting on your art table right now. Who inspired you to create it? What did you see that spurred you into action? Can we see a picture of it?
My art table has been sparse these last few months as I continue to (painfully) work on a collection of short stories. Danielle’s most recent works are noted in the photo collage above.
Vintage books of North American animals have immensely inspired me. I often scour the consignment shops in search of them to help encourage me to tell my own stories that sit on the cusp of my heart. These animals are my biggest muses at this time, so much so, that I have written and illustrated a book of Totem Animals called “Sometimes I Feel Like a Fox.”
The artists that have created the animals that I find while exploring continue to cultivate a deep hunger within me to develop my own style and body of work. Danielle’s vintage books can be seen in the collage above and is labeled “vintage books”)
If you could sit next to one of the masters and pick their creative brains, who would it be and why?
Without a doubt, the Master Painter I would like to sit and have a tête-à-tête with is Van Gogh. I had the privilege of seeing his work in Paris and at an exhibit just two years ago in Ottawa Canada that showcased his final works inspired by his time in the South of France.
Viewing his paintings in person moved me to tears. I was so transfixed by each one of his canvases that it took me hours to get through them all. I followed his brushstrokes with my eyes and at times I was so overcome, I had to walk away to catch my breath. For me, the content was not as important as the execution of his work. It was the way I was stirred as I gazed onto his canvases. It reached into the depths of my soul.
Van Gogh’s paintings are bold and vivid, and standing before his work, you could sense his passion. He was definitely one of a kind. He still is. I think more than anything I would just love to watch him execute a painting, from beginning to end.
The painting that moved me more than all the others was a surprise. It was not my favorite before, but the reaction I had to this painting after gazing upon it catapulted me. It lifted me to a place of awe. I am so grateful for his body of work. It continues to inspire me, and I expect it will evermore.
If you could sit next to a creative crush for a day, who would it be? And don’t cheat, it has to be someone who has no idea who you are?
I do have a creative crush on a French artist. She is in my opinion the finest living illustrator of our time and I would LOSE MY MIND if I could ever spend the day with her. Her name is Rebecca Dautremer. She paints with gouache, which is something I have not tried (yet), but rather it is her images that astound me. She transports me into a world that is unknown, but one I want to stay in, and linger. Her work is imaginative, poetic and bold. Her work is singular and in my opinion, she is a Modern Master.
If you can, describe the magical turn when something that comes together -when all the bits and pieces fall together after lots of practice?
The magic for me does not happen as often as you might think. I am constantly learning and growing and pushing through often-uncomfortable stages to reach a single moment of bliss—of magic. However, there are some moments that make all the difficulty worth it. For instance, I’m sure I will party like it’s 1999 when I can finally get the hands to look like hands.
I know I will never stay at one stage for long because I need to grow.
I need to push all the time or I feel like I’m dying. And it’s the times that I resist change that it hurts the most. I’ve learned not to hold on so tight anymore and trust that I am going where I’m supposed to go. It’s almost a curse to live this way. But it’s who I am. Some of us are meant to take voyages into places that make us feel anything but comfortable. Until then I will continue to be inspired by all the great artists that came before me and the ones that live among us, still.
Danielle Daniel teaches online and in person. Find out more here: www.danielledaniel.com
Have you signed up for Studying Under the Masters yet? Well, get to it! I am giving away a pretty awesome prize if I do say so myself. Just click the PayPal button below!