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I always love receiving emails from artists who are interested in showing their work on Eye Candies. And I was more than pleasantly surprised when Stephanie Bucholz introduced me to her creative world. Experimenting with a wide variety of art forms including figure drawing, landscapes, still life, even wire, Stephanie creates pieces that are rich in emotions. Pieces that are inviting to the eye and makes you want to look closer in order to explore the artist’s drawing techniques (lines, shapes, patterns etc) and in my opinion Stephanie Bucholz has undoubtedly a very personal and interesting touch.

Let’s welcome her!

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Hello Stephanie and welcome to EyeCandies. Give us a brief introduction of your background. Do you remember when you actually knew that you wanted to be an artist - and what were your first steps in the field?

Thank you for inviting me. What a great blog!

I wonder if I ever really thought about it like that—when I "knew". Seems like I've just done it all my life as entertainment or to make a gift for someone. It was more like a hobby and I think that freed me to explore it in an on-again-off-again, just-cuz-it-feels-good kind of way. It was a diversion from writing which I took way too seriously and consequently had to give up, at least temporarily. As an art minor in college, with a focus on printmaking, I unexpectedly learned how to draw (at least my doodly version of it!). I think that was the beginning of taking it more seriously—eventually I took a pen to a canvas and started drawing on it. Once you find what works for you you're home free. I still try not to take it too seriously!
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Your art feels to me very bold and symbolic. Especially your figure & portrait paintings are filled with energy and emotions. What do you seek to explore and depict through your creations?

I can't say I use symbolism intentionally—at least I don't usually choose any symbols. I'm all about depicting a moment in time and all the aesthetic, emotional, ironic and symbolic details that belong to that moment by chance. I feel so much more at home with the Imagist, Red Wheelbarrow school than with the classic this-means-that tradition. That doesn't mean I don't enjoy symbolism—I do, but in my own work it's usually a random comparison that happens to exist, not my own commentary.

I guess that's my comment: symbols mean nothing in nature—only what we bring to them through a long history of agreed-upon meanings.

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Talk to us about your Dogeater series.

It looks like a series maybe because I'm blogging parts of it as I finish but it's one piece—a 24 x 36 wood panel with a graphic short story depicted on it in panel form, like a comic book or graphic novel. I'd wanted to write a graphic novel since a friend introduced me to Chris Ware's Jimmy Corrigan, The Smartest Kid on Earth. I didn't want to go off in a different direction, though, so it made sense to try it on canvas. I ended up putting it on wood so I could include plenty of collage and carving with the linoleum cutter—stuff it with physical, visual details.

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Here's the story: My ex-husband, a writer, emailed me a story about our divorce that was, strangely enough, just NOT how it went down. Without getting into whose fault anything was, let me just say that in his version, I am a raging, pitiless Fruma Sarah and he is a hero who rescues dogs. And this may be the case, for all I know, but I'm going to go out on a limb and say that it probably isn't.
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I think what it became from what it was is pretty interesting and kind of hilarious so I'm telling my version. I'm trying to be—or trying to try to be—as honest as possible.
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From what I see, you tend to use mixed media such as acrylics, markers and collage often in your pieces. Can you explain your inclination towards this technique?

I get bored doing one thing for too long so I'm always wanting to change it up and try new media. Why these particular media? Sometimes practical reasons. Acrylics over oil because my studio is also my bedroom and I have two cats, so, no turpentine! Marker because I love the drawing as part of the finished piece, not just a guideline that gets lost underneath. Collage works so well to bring depth to the image. I love the transformative nature of it—a small bit of a photo from the newspaper can be so stunning, disorienting and grounding at the same time. A bunch of them together create an overall texture of controlled chaos—impressionistic, like a glimpse or the memory of a glimpse of the real world.
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My most recent discovery is working down into layers of paint be removing it with q-tips dipped in acetone. It works really well with reclaimed paintings—old paintings found at yard sales—to bring out bits of the original image. You get all kinds of interesting stuff that you would never come up with otherwise!
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What feeds your need for creation? How do you deal with inspiration? What are the first steps you take when you start a new project?

I look forward all week to free time on the weekends to paint—the time to forget about everything serious and important and just have fun. When I finally get that time I'm more than ready to go. For inspiration I might look at artists I like, or my own photos for reference if I'm thinking of doing a landscape or cityscape. How I start varies depending on what I'm going to work on but most often it involves painting a canvas black, choosing a photo, and drawing what I see in the photo onto the canvas in black marker. I do it freehand but I use a grid as a guideline to keep the perspective from creeping way off. I fill in with paint using sponge brushes or q-tips. I'm not a big fan of bristle brushes except to apply things like gold leaf adhesive.

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Which was the latest art exhibition you visited and what were your impressions?

I was in New York a couple of weeks ago and visited the Guggenheim (a Cubism perspective that bored me to distraction—never did like Cubism) and the Whitney, a hodgepodge of bad art that was unfortunately not even spectacularly bad, just middle-of-the-road bad: again, boring. I love seeing bad art in New York! It reminds me that the ability to decide what is good art is a fallacy belonging to no one and everyone. Oh, also the Rembrandt show at the Frick. Made me feel all classy and studious and cool, but distanced, not inspired to pick up a pen. What does that for me is new stuff, experimental and different—good and bad.
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"Boaters" - experimenting with wire on canvas
Are there any other art forms you feel connected to and/or influenced by?

Great writing and music are two of my favorite things in life. I don't create in those categories (except for a little writing for Dogeater and more like it in the future). I like it that way! I'm free to enjoy it more fully I think. I also enjoy photography. My own photos are usually for reference but if you take enough of 'em you get a few lucky good ones!

What are your feelings when you finish an art piece? Is there a particular painting you really feel connected to?

I'm always happy to finish a painting and move it out of here! Sometimes there's a twinge I'm going to miss certain paintings but I'm happy they're going to people who enjoy them. I feel connected to a lot of them but if I had to pick one I'd say Dogeater, because it feels so uniquely mine, and of course it's so personal. It feels like a breakthrough and milestone for me because it brings together everything I've learned in printmaking, drawing, and painting, and writing. It feels like all the years I spent working on those things have led to this moment, this new thing.
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Can you mention your top 5 favorite artists?

Right now I'd say Van Gogh, Klimt, Michael Flohr, Robert Crumb, and Banksy. If you haven't seen Crumb or Exit Through the Gift Shop (about Banksy are two of the most fascinating documentaries I've ever seen.

Share one of your favorite art places online.

I have to mention these guys at Art One (http://www.artonegalleryinc.com/). WHAT a great venue for new artists. Kraig has maintained this space for 14+ years, as a MARVELOUS place for new, local, and student art. A TRUE advocate of inspiration and democratic access to art. This is the gallery I've sold most of my paintings in in the last three years. Kraig and the people who work with him deserve some kudos, seriously. Kraig distrusts the net thing; the guys who work for him are much younger and they see it. Trying to rope Kraig in. He's worth it, I swear.
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What colors would you use if you were to paint your self portrait? Where do you see yourself 10 years from now.

I guess I would use a lot of blues and greens because I use a lot of them in my painting. I think I'm slightly color blind in that part of the spectrum so it seems appropriate. I know myself pretty well but there is always unknown territory. Otherwise, what a bore! Ten years from now I'd like to be painting full time, not just on the weekends.

And last but not least, is there something we should look forward to? Your future plans?

Definitely more graphic novels!

LINKS: […]

Site: http://stephaniebucholz.com/
Blog: http://stephaniebucholz.com/engineroom/

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Comments

02/20/2014 03:49

I endlessly am waiting on forthcoming to your posts again because I have impressed through your writing.

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