Today the spotlight is on painter and digital artist Dean James Art, you can see more of his work here: www.DeanJamesArt.artweb.com
Being an artist
Please give us a few words of introduction about yourself
I am traditionally trained, and have digital methods too. I have found that when models want to sit for an artist, they treat it lke a photo shoot. So with technology the way it is, I do photo shoots with models, and then print off the images I like and sticky tape them to my easel for reference.
When did you decide to pursue art as a career?
My Art started when I was a young child. I had been a bit mischievous and wound my Dad up. I set him a condition before he disciplined me. I showed him a doodle I had made of him whilst he was watching TV and a race with his favourite horse racing. He was so pleased with the drawing and sketch I had made that I knew that I could be an artist!
I am also a musician and have floated between the two interests. When music was making me money, art was my escape. When art makes me money, music is my escape.
What training did you have?
Art College and University (Fine Art and Digital Art)
What has been the high point of your career so far?
There have been many because my philosophy is that ‘the next painting is the best one.’ Appearing in International Arts magazines was great. Running my own Exhibitions can be hard work but fun. I had a private exhibition in a very well known Rock Star’s house, so that was great too.
What’s your favourite quote?
God is Love.
Who is your favourite artist?
I have many. I love Da Vinci and still use his methods of marking out my sketches. I love Turner and Constable. Then I move into Picasso and Van Gogh. And I love the Impressionists such as Renoir and Monet.
What are you aiming for?
Dean James Art as an international Brand and Art House……now that would be fun!
How will you get there?
Keep doing what I am doing and NEVER give up.
Is anything holding you back?
Some of my ideas need big investments, so some of those ideas are on hold for a little while.
You and art
What feelings or reactions do you hope to arouse in people who view your work? Are you ever surprised by reactions that you get?
I want to kiss the Universe when I paint. I have often wept whilst painting and these tears have fallen onto some of my canvasses. Not a problem with acrylics, but non water mixable traditional oils don’t like it. I want to get a reaction. You see, I might have what I think is a funny idea, yet someone else will look at it and be moved differently. Good art gets a reaction and keeps the viewer looking at the works and keep coming back! I like to make a feast for the eyes.
From start to finish, how long does it take for you to create your work?
I Sketch in 10 minutes. Some oil paintings take weekes and weeks. I have several oil paintings dryinjg at the moment. I finished them both together six weeks ago, yet they are still not ‘touch dry’ because i put the paint on so thick. This is what I love about ‘oils.’ They take weeks to be touch dry, yet scientifically, they actually take hundreds of years to dry! So when I leave this planet – and I am only visiting – when I go up to be in eternal glory, my paintings will still be drying, haha, it muses me much to think about it!
What music do you like to listen to when you work?
Jazz, acid jazz, funk, classical, indie rock, classic rock, in that order. I am a musician too and I have produced music themes to some of my paintings and sell some of the MP3s too – even though I made the music for an advert for the painting.
What are you working on next? Any future plans or projects in the pipeline that we should look out for?
Some portraits for a major high profile Exhibition in summer 2012. In between painting these I am taking orders from my website and selling prints too. I also have a diary with some very lucrative private collection commissions too.
Being inspired by art
Who (living or dead) inspires you? and why?
Yeshua (Jesus) because I have met Him.
and then my list continues loads!
What feelings, subjects or concepts inspire you as an artist?
I am always aware of a ‘painting.’ It can sometimes be seen where you would not necessarily expect it to be seen!
What is your favourite work that you’ve produced so far and why?
I only enjoy my work when I am painting it. When it is done, it is for others to enjoy. I have had my fun with it. This way I keep myself prolific and busy. Otherwise you get very obsessive with the works and end up not able to try something new. I now don’t even keep any ‘stock.’ Each exhibition is fresh and new work, and at the end of it I auction off the works until they are all sold.
an artist’s advice
For those thinking about turning a passion for art into a career, could you give any advice?
It has to be a passion, and it is a ‘talent’ that is being dealt with. So put the passion first and love making your art, because you love, well, making art. Let others decide of they want to buy your works to make it a career, and as you get busier and are able to sit down and see that you can make a good living from it, get business advice and treat it like a business.
Any tips on how to get your work seen and get the commissions coming in?
Show people your art and talk to them about it! If you don’t tell anyone, they will not know!