Artist Statement & Course Brief
I aim to create artwork that sits somewhere between dreams and reality. I am often inspired by real life flora as well watercolors, Chinese ink paintings, and modern food photography. My aesthetic tends towards minimalistic styling with an appreciation for negative space. Through making botanical sculptures, I explore the natural world.
Although sometimes my botanical work is mistaken for real plants and flowers, there are always elements that are a little fantastical or that one wouldn’t find in nature. For example, often I combine flowers and fruit on one branch when in reality, they wouldn’t coexist in that way. I also love asymmetry and creating little imperfections such as a bug bitten leaf. I feel it’s a constant reminder that organic beauty is not in perfection, but rather how things really are.
Sometimes it is in the everyday, simple things that it becomes the most magical to find and observe beauty that we may have merely passed over in our daily lives. To me these moments feel magical and often like a meditative salve. In this course, you will learn to create a painterly cluster of grapes with veined leaves and curly tendrils.
As my art philosophy is to try to create artwork that sits somewhere between dreams and reality, I took inspiration from two main sources for this course.
My first source of inspiration was from real-life Peony Kyoho grapes, a relative to the Concord grape. I was struck by how pretty these grapes were while munching on them and decided to use them as my reference model. Peony Kyoho grapes are a purplish grape variety popular in Asia for their exceptional sweetness and grown locally in California. The pretty bloom found on these grapes is something we will learn how to emulate with paper and paint. You will learn multiple painting techniques I created specifically for this course to achieve different effects. I will encourage you to paint freely and organically.
My second source of inspiration was from the Dutch painter Adriaen Coorte, known for his small, intimate and unpretentious still lifes, many focused around simple fruits and vegetables. I was fortunate to have seen his ethereal work in person, Still Life with Asparagus (1697), at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. From Coorte, I learned that even small paintings of seemingly mundane objects can be elevated with the painting approach we take. Rather than purely taking an approach to copy reality, we can instead take a few scenic detours as artists to bring additional expression and beauty to our work. You will learn how to work with both crepe paper and artisanal papers, expanding the textures you are able to achieve. This will open new doors for you in terms of possibilities in paper.
I hope that through this course you will not only learn how to create finely crafted paper art, but also find additional ways to express and elevate your own work. Thank you for joining me on this journey.