Ever a story... waiting to be told

Monday, November 25, 2013

Good Question

"Sanguine" matted and framed (about 18x24)

Q - Which artists have most influenced you?
I'm getting better at talking about my art, and answering people's questions about how and why I drew what I did. And I can talk about my process and my philosophy and my approach to my work.
But if somebody were to ask me which artists have most influenced me, I'm not sure I could give a conclusive answer. Not right off the top of my head. I know I've been greatly influenced by a lot of different artists, but not in a conscious, deliberate way.  I have particular artists whose work I especially admire, and there are paintings and drawings that have inspired me tremendously. Much of how we are influenced, I believe, is subliminal. Still, I would like to be able to answer that question without stammering around and feeling like a fool.
I looked through the work of artists I follow, and individual pieces that I've marked as particular favorites. And I found some definite similarities among the artists and the artworks that really move me. (I'm ashamed to admit that none of the old masters are on my list, but that's due to my own ignorance and lack of formal education in art history.)

Q: Which artists have most influenced ME?
A: *I am influenced by artists who are highly imaginative, yet still maintain a degree of believability. Work which is not strictly bound to reality, nor is it total abstraction. I am influenced by those works that successfully exist between the two worlds. I am mesmerized by the work of MC Escher, Art Venti, and Aleksandr Starodubov.
*I am influenced by those who create strong moods and imply stories through their work: Such as Andrew Wyeth, Anton Pieck, and Jacek Yerka.
*I am influenced by artists who use tonality to convey depth and feeling. I like strongly monochromatic pieces, and black and white artwork: Amadine Labarre, Tim Seaward, and Armin Mersmann, to name a few.
*I also want to add that I am greatly influenced by writers and musicians whose work embodies those same qualities I've mentioned. I think there are many sources of artistic influence outside of the visual art realm.

Which artists have most influenced you?
If I am asked now, I will be ready to respond. I feel good about having clarified some of those influences in my own mind.
I encourage you to explore that question for yourself and think about whose work seems to pull you in. Which pieces have, in some small way, permeated your mind and affected the way you approach your own work.  I wonder if many of us will name the same artists as influences? 


  1. And yet, another awesome post, Katherine. I have to admit I personally love Rembrandt...his use of dark shadows and light are wonderful... I love realism and he has influenced me so much... I also love John Singer Sargent....he did some beautiful impressionistic work and I love his self-portrait.... Your Sanguine looks beautiful framed! Wonderful work...

  2. If only one allowed it would be Picasso.
    Next - Cezanne..Gauguin ..Manet
    Andrew.Wyeth ..twachtman..Levin
    I could go on and on with the contemporary artists.
    Thanks for making me think.

  3. Great insight on your influences Katherine. I would have imagined Vermeer or Rembrandt being on your list too, maybe even Delacroix. I agree, it's not an influence but an admiration and not limited to visual artists. Wonderful points and lots to think about!

  4. I would be in the same boat as you if asked this question. I don't know that I could answer as well. I do love Da Vinci, Caravaggio, Van Gogh though...Celeste Bergin captures mood beautifully, Julie Ford Oliver a gorgeous twist on realism with her fracturing, and your work is stunning in its accuracy, attention to detail, and a nice little shot of whimsy.

  5. You know what, if the old masters had blogs or websites, I think I'd be more familiar with their work. I should make it a goal to view their work regularly. Thanks you guys!

  6. Bonsoir ma chère Katherine,
    Une publication très intéressante qui donne le bon ton de la réflexion.
    Il est vrai que sans être véritablement influencé, nous sommes des éponges et nous capturons des émotions, des images, des couleurs, des sons... Tout ceci se répercute selon notre réceptivité sans chercher à vouloir faire du "Picasso, du Van Gogh, du..."... On est sensible aux oeuvres de certains peintres, à un style de musique... à des odeurs...

    Je suis allée admirer les oeuvres de tes artistes favoris via Internet car certains pour moi m'étaient inconnus. Quel merveilleux travail !... J'ai été très agréablement surprise par leur talent. Je me sens toute petite !
    Je connaissais Andrew Wyeth. J'ai aimé les oeuvres d'Anton Pieck qui m'ont fait penser un peu à l'univers de Carlson. Le travail de Aleksandr Starodubov est sublime également...
    En ce qui me concerne j'aime beaucoup Jean Cocteau, Gauguin bien sûr, Hilaire, Alaux, Voyet, Truphémus et tant d'autres encore !...
    J'ai un très grand ami Georges Damin qui peint remarquablement, mais je n'aime pas toutes ses peintures. J'en possède de nombreuses toutefois. Il venait souvent peindre dans ma maison de Port-Grimaud. La vue lui plaisait beaucoup !
    Je termine en te remerciant pour cet excellent moment que je viens de passer en venant te rendre visite... Un moment qui va se prolonger car il va réveiller en moi des souvenirs enfouis et me remémorer certaines belles peintures que j'ai eu la chance de pouvoir admirer.
    Gros bisous à toi.

  7. The work is looking ravishing with frame!
    I have thought about this question a lot and find that I like a bit of everyone in its own way! Actually Bob Ross was the one who made me paint seriously :-)

  8. Great answers and I will go along with the list :) I also like folk artists as well as old masters like Da Vinci, Rembrandt and others . Then there are artists from the east whose work I totally adore ! And Picasso, Monet, Mary cassat , singer Sargent - oh the list is endless - I like them all modern, old, east, west, fine and folk :)

  9. Happy Thanksgiving, K!

    I don't know much--okay "anything"--about those artists you have named. The artist who has influenced me the most is you! You have educated me on the existence of complex techniques, overall planning and mathematical equations (no quizzes, please!) that go into creating pleasing works of art. Also, mood and color and shadowing, OH MY!

    And soul, which is your strongest point. Your art is reflective of the depths of your soul and I'm thankful you share that gift with all of us!

    GO K!! Happy Turkey Day!

  10. This could be a long list but I am reminded of a similar post on another blog. "Name the top 15 artists who have influenced you in only 15 minutes" or something like that.
    I would name the ones for me that constantly come to mind.
    Homer, Hopper, the Wyeth's, Vermeer, Manet, Daumier, Bellows, the precisionists (Sheeler), the mid-century California watercolorists, Theibaud...
    There are of course many others including contemporaries (Mead, Berkey, Kareken, Cotton, Berry, Hale) but as soon as I have to think about it, well I can't always narrow it down.

  11. This work framed is very beautiful! Arianna