Congratulations to our September Artist of the Month, Carrie Waller! She was a finalist in The Artist’s Magazine‘s Annual Art Competition! Her painting Incandescent is below. Keep scrolling to read more about the artist’s current life in Japan and how she grew up in a creative household!
Fussa, Japan ~ carriewallerfineart.com
I’ve been creating art since elementary school. I have been very lucky and have had wonderful art teachers from elementary school all the way through college. I won my first blue ribbon when I was 8-years-old in the Texas State Rodeo and that pretty much sealed the deal. I’ve been creating art ever since then. My degree is actually in Interior Design. Graduating from a technical program I was very fortunate to learn technical architectural drawing, color theory and design in addition to core studio art classes.
I make money through my art and teaching. I am currently living in Japan supporting my husband’s career so I have had to take a bit of a break from teaching workshops. Living in Japan is giving me an opportunity to soak in another culture and I’m excited to see where that inspiration will take me.
I started painting in watercolor because I had pets and eventually children that I didn’t want to be around paints that had to be ventilated. After painting with watercolors, I couldn’t imagine switching to any other media. I fell in love with painting glass because of all of the abstract shapes and colors that you can capture. I’m drawn to making ordinary objects look extraordinary.
Once an idea for a painting has ruminated for a while, I gather up my props and set them up, usually outside or in a window that will have dramatic sunlight pouring through it. I photograph my still life setup from many different angles; It’s not unusual to take over 100 photographs of the setup. After analyzing my photos and editing them, I then do a drawing based off of my photograph. Once my drawing is complete I transfer it to Arches 260lb cold-pressed paper using homemade transfer paper. This limits the amount of graphite that is on my watercolor paper. I then start painting using Daniel Smith watercolor paints and a Kolinsky sable size 4 paint brush, working from the right hand side of my paper towards the left side. I paint in a puzzle piece fashion, finishing one area before moving on to the next.
I spend a couple of weeks on a given painting. I have two small children that require my attention so some days I will be able to paint for 8 hours and other days I will be lucky to get in 30 minutes. For the painting Incandescent I spent about a week and a half.
This painting was the second in a series of light bulb paintings and it was a lot of fun because it was a complete different viewpoint of the exact same still life setup that I had already painted. The only difficulty was making sure that all the areas made sense; you can see light bulbs through light bulbs, so it was imperative that everything lined up, including the shadows and reflections.
I plan to teach workshops internationally and in the United States. I will also continue painting as much as possible. I would love to eventually own my own gallery and self represent.
I have always wanted and needed to create. It’s in my blood. My mom was a crafter and I watched her do that my whole life and my dad is a photographer. I learned to view the world as a composition.