PSST: Why are you an artist or how did you choose to become an artist?
I never really chose to be an artist. I’ve been told that I started drawing before I could walk. It’s just always been a part of my life.
PSST: How do you describe your painting style and color choices?
I would describe my style as mostly realistic. I like to emphasize color in my work.
PSST: Where do you paint? Home, studio, corner of a room? How is it set up?
Both of my older brothers recently moved away from home, and I’ve been blessed that my parents let me have one of the bedrooms to use as an art studio. It has an attached bathroom that I use to clean my brushes and a closet that I can use to store frames, mats, and other supplies. I have lots of room for my easel and also for the backdrop and lighting that I use to photograph still life setups. I even have a table that I use to gesso canvasses.
PSST: What is your subject matter and how do you choose it?
I paint things from everyday life that catch my eye. Lately I have been focusing more on portraits of children and dogs.
PSST: What is your art background? Academic, self-taught, workshops?
I started taking drawing classes when I was about 7 or 8 years old. In 2008, when I was 10 years old, I entered my first art competition at the Pearl Museum of Fine Arts and received First Place in the elementary homeschool division. About a year later my mom found a teacher who would teach oil painting to children, Donna Hewett, and I started taking oil lessons. After that I took colored pencil lessons from Lana Dinsmore and some classes in woodcarving and watercolor. Since 2012 I have been taking lessons from Tina Szajko in pastel and oil, and in 2013 I attended a 3-day workshop with Dalhart Windberg.
PSST: Is there a single incident, a quote, or an award that will always have special meaning to you and why?
I have received several “Best of Show School Student” awards in local art shows, but it meant so much to me to receive “Best Landscape” at the Northwest Art League fall 2014 show because it was competing against adult artists. Participating in Art of the Pastel 2015 and receiving First Place for Emma had a very special meaning to me because it was the first competition that I have been in that was an adult competition, with no student division.
PSST: What do you consider your best painting ever and why?
I don’t think I’ve painted my best painting yet. I’m always trying to improve.
PSST: What art events do you have scheduled?
I am planning on entering work in upcoming shows for local art leagues this spring and hope to go to the Lone Star Art Guild convention next summer.
PSST: How do you sell/show your work? Galleries, online, home studio tour, open house?
I have several works in the Downtown Art Gallery in Brenham, Texas.
PSST: What do you hope people gain from viewing your work?
I love it when people feel an emotional attachment to my artwork. Last month I sold a painting of a brown labrador retriever to a family who had recently lost their pet.
PSST: What is your price range?
My prices range from $5 for note cards of my artwork on up.
PSST: What social media, websites, or art-focused groups are you associated with?
I am a member of Tomball Art League and Brenham Art League. I have a webpage, christylovelady.tumblr.com.
PSST: What are your goals as an artist?
Since I still have a year and a half of high school left, my first goal is to graduate. I’m not sure what I want to do after that. I love to learn different techniques and methods; so, my main goal is to learn as much as possible.
PSST: What is your “favorite thing” you use in painting? A special gadget or tool you have discovered or a special technique that you have developed that you would pass on to others?
A technique that I have used a lot lately that I have really enjoyed is putting a thinned oil underpainting underneath my pastel paintings.
PSST: Who or what has been your greatest source of encouragement?
Tina Szajko has been my greatest source of encouragement. I have already learned so much from her, and I feel that I could study with her for many more years and not learn everything that she has to teach me. In addition to teaching me art, she has also taught me many life skills.