I would like to introduce you all to a fellow west coast artist Krislyn Dillard. Krislyn is the owner of the Etsy shop “Krislyndillard” she creates beautiful natural paintings… I’m totally in love with her minimalist bird watercolor paintings. Lets get to know more about her creative process.
SammyPhoto: Walk us through the step-by-step process you use to create your art.
Krislyn: First I need a brilliant idea! So I scour the world for images and ideas. I’ve had ideas come from an off hand post on Facebook by a friend, I’ve had them while walking in the forest with my husband and I have had them hit me at 2 am totally ending my REM cycle. Once I have the idea I scour the internet, my own photos and if I’m lucky real life observations to get a thorough understanding of my subject. I’ll know it works because I will have a clear mental image form. After all this I might start to create. If I am painting in oil the process moves to the sketching mode. If its a drawing I get right to it same with watercolor. For every one art piece I have up on my Etsy site there is anywhere from 1 to 4 pieces that weren’t quite good enough. If it’s an oil painting the good thing is I can fix my mistakes right on the canvas so after the initial sketch, usually there is only one painting… after about 60 hours of work. I draw anywhere with a portable drawing kit. I paint in watercolor at the kitchen table or on the floor if its big. I have an art studio that I paint oils in. I also paint in acrylic but the process is almost the same as for oils. Lastly, I listen to live concerts, books on tape and documentaries while I work. I think that about sums it up.
SammyPhoto: What are you favorite and least favorite parts of selling on Etsy?
Krislyn: My favorite parts are scanning all the incredible handmade stuff people make! It inspires me to create and it inspires me to sell… so I can buy some of it! I also love seeing other artists in my genre doing well and making sales. It just makes me happy knowing there are artists out there creating and selling their work. I haven’t been on long enough to form too many negative opinions about Etsy. The only thing I can think, for risk of being controversial is the new promotion listings. It seems they are almost the same in nature to the whole net neutrality. Those who pay get visibility. I found just using SEO works fine so far.
SammyPhoto: How did you get into art?
Krislyn: I’m an artist. We all answer the same boring way: When I was a kid with crayons.
SammyPhoto: Who inspires you?
Krislyn: I have who and what.
Who: Every artist that came before me because really all us contemporary artist stand on their great shoulders. Without the likes of Van Gogh, Mondrian, Picasso, Leonardo, artists from Africa, India, Japan, artists from ancient times back to the Lascaux, all the artists I can’t think of right at this moment up to today are amazing and creative and looking at their work gives me tingles.
What: I am inspired by nature, animals, myths, textures, layers, lines, negative space and light. Just to name a few.
SammyPhoto: Where do you call home?
Krislyn: Springfield Oregon. We are lucky here to have so many parks and green spaces. Certainly, it is a beautiful area.
SammyPhoto: Could you share some of your hobbies with us.
Krislyn: I am a yoga teacher! I also love gardening, biking and playing volleyball. I like visiting with friends and meeting new people. I love sitting in coffee shops and sketching. I adore my kitties and play with them everyday. Sometimes I like to sew, or bead or try something else crafty (so long as there is no math involved).
SammyPhoto: Does your art pay the bills?
Krislyn: Nope. I hope to sell enough art simply to make space in my house for more art. It also would help with my art supplies. I pay the bills with teaching yoga and I couldn’t be more lucky!
SammyPhoto: Art school or self taught?
Krislyn: I went to an arts and communications high school then two years of art college at Pacific Northwest College of Art. After that my life took on a less linear path and everything I have learned since is from trial and error and observing the greats.