How a painting arise
My paintings are a reflection of my feelings and emotions. I do not have to look for an idea, when I start a new artwork. Some pre-image already exists in my head. It originates from my life experience or a dream. Sometimes I have a strange feeling that something outside me is interested in my works to happen, and it brings in some unexpected subjects and visions into my mind, which I cannot get rid of other than to paint them down on canvas.
For example, the subject of “From Under the Table” painting was suggested by a strange dream: as if I was sitting, down to the size of a kitten under a table. There was a candle and a bouquet of yellow roses on the table. And huge size-of-a-skyscraper shadows moved along the wall. It was, altogether, not scary at all. On the contrary, it was fascinating what was happening. The next day I started doing that painting.
I am not doing paintings on a regular basis as a daily job. The inspiration comes like waves. Paintings arise from emotions. And I am trying to express what I feel at the very creation moment. When time comes, I start paining right away without doing a sketch. I believe that a sketch “steals” the energy, empties the author, and by becoming a final artwork itself, it takes away the painting’s life. I spend much time thinking about a future painting, and when I put it together in my mind, I start painting.
Often, I am driven by a work itself, so that my preliminary expectations are changed by the course of creation. And that’s okay. Being fearless is most important for a painter, I believe. When you are inwardly free, it is always felt in the completed artworks.
During painting, I am completely disconnected from the outside world, being in some sort of a trance. And the painting, somehow, manifests itself on the canvas.
Formats and unusual angles.
I love to work with large formats; they radically change the emotional perception of paintings. It is an indescribable feeling when you have subjugated the 7x10 ft surface.
I like to change the scale, to make small look large. I like to show the familiar subject from an unusual point of view. To look at an ordinary object or a situation in a new way; and to open unexpected meanings of seemingly trivial events.
My preferred medium is the palette knife and acrylic paints. A painting, executed by a palette knife, is very emotional. It has a rich and interesting texture, transmitting the expression of the author. Palette knife is the perfect tool to pass emotions. Another option is brushes of different sizes and shapes. Most important for me is that the tool I use should not take my attention away at technical nuances. That is why I use the acrylic paints. Acrylic paints, as compared with any other material, allow you to paint quickly without being distracted by the technological limitations of oil paints and other artistic means. It allows you to "knead" picture, to work on all the canvas at once, for a long time. With acrylics, you can work emotionally, not fearing that color change when dried.
Sometimes any available mixed media, such as fabric, newspapers, coins, parts of plants, sand, etc., are used. When used in collage-painting, they often allow to better transmit the feelings. Other materials that I often use are different metallic paints, gold and silver leaf. They add an unusual depth and liveliness of the painting. Depending on the angle and lighting you can see, sometimes, quite a different works.
About the success definition
Let me describe you “How I define the success of the author?” When some artists say that they do not care about the recognition, that they write only for themselves, - this is at least flirtation. Everybody needs a feedback, some evaluation and return of emotions from another person. Painting a work just for yourself is like being a bright lamp, turned on and hidden in a drawer.
There is another type of success – the success of the painting. If the artwork is successful, it begins to give energy back. Many spectators have told me about the ability of my artworks to radiate the energy. Someone people compare them to the battery that charges you back after a hard day; others are inspired and begin to paint or compose music after having been on my show.
I wish to ignite the viewers for making their own creations, to induce and rise their thoughts and ideas. It is an incredible feeling when a visitor views a painting, leaves out and comes back again at the exhibition booth. And it is okay when every reaction is well seen, even such as blue funk. Because it means that a person does not remain indifferent to the painting.
There are few things in our everyday life that might take one from a cocoon and daily routine. A human being is surrounded with an aggressive world making him protect himself and hide. If my painting touches the viewer, then there is a chance that he or she would start thinking why that happened, and maybe, would start changing the surrounding world.
The success for me is to convey my soul and emotion through my works to the audience. When a person stands by the painting with empathy, crying or smiling happily – that is a success for a painter. It is not necessary to hit or reach out to everyone, but I do not want to be completely non-understood.
My style and subjects
Often asked question that a painter answers is – “How would you describe your current style?” Well, I believe that painting style is just a tool, same as a subject, a technique, size of the canvas, for example. And since I use a style as a tool, it is rather difficult to define the style I work in. It has some elements of expressionism in some works, or impressionism in others. Sometimes the task I put demands the mixture of styles in a spirit of postmodernism, or the brightness and straightness of pop art. A lot of my works are written in the style of abstract expressionism. However, all of them are united by a similar brushwork and creation algorithm.
Another question would be: “What attracts me to a subject?” First of all and for sure, there must be some kind of emotion in the subject I choose. Be sure – an emotion! Previously, it seemed to me that the color is more important. Not anymore. There must be three components: emotional, color and composition ones. It is much easier to convey the emotion by the means of abstraction rather than with subject painting. Although, for example, if you have a look at my subject paintings – say, at the “Big Dragon” painting, it is the embodiment of melancholy loneliness; and, for example, the "Golden" painting is the quintessence of pain.
My landscapes, I believe, are no less emotional. There are places that amaze me with their strength and impression. I travel a lot and often take paints and canvas in a roll with me, so I do not miss the vivid experiences, inspired by the trip.
Now, here is a brief list of themes I paint: Nude / Erotic, Wildlife, Florals & Botanicals, Landscapes, Cityscapes, Abstract art.
When I paint, I do not have a single global goal to reach. If I believe one day that I’ve reached the top, it would mean I should change professions, or that life has ended. I cannot imagine myself doing something else, or live without doing painting...
While there are local goals I have. And for example, I’d love to try working with a large installation in a modern art museum space. It also would be great to take part in the Venice Biennale. That would be a challenge, and the recognition, and extremely interesting task.
Despite my achievements, I believe that I am at the beginning of the road. And as long as I live and feel new emotions, the new paintings will be delivered!
Two years ago, I have first time visited the United States, and was fascinated with America and American people! The USA art market and contemporary art museums are my new challenging goal. And as my Russian gallery manager says: “Daria, let us fly and spread the wings over America!”