A month ago I began asking people I found on Instagram if I could use their photographs as references for watercolor paintings. Since I just completed my goal of ten paintings I'd like to look back at the whole experience.
I chose people who took photos of the Intermountain or Pacific Northwest. I also looked for people who seemed open to exploring the avenues and routes their work created. I chose places which I had previously visited as well as places I have yet to physically experience. Every vantage point, however, was new to me. Initially I was afraid of rejection and apathy but generally I received enthusiastic responses and I met some very interesting people because of these paintings.
When painting the actual pieces I never wanted to make exact copies of the photograph. Not only would it have been futile, the work would capture far less nuance and intrigue. I saw the paintings and the whole project turn into collaborations with the photographers and with the landscape, as well.
From MRI scans we know that our brains light up differently when viewing paintings and photographs. Those studies and this project affirm to me painting and photography have unique places in our visual vocabulary. In my own art making I see these two mediums functioning as complements.
View all ten in my portfolio