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February 2014 Volume 3 No. 2

VISUAL LANGUAGE contemporary fine art

Kimberly Santini


VL Kimberly Santini


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Kimberly Santini

I’ve always been an artist, even if I’ve not actively labeled myself one. As a child, I doodled animals in the margins of spelling tests and daydreamed of painting murals. My parents indulged me with Ebony pencils and gum erasers, and I covered the backside of reams of paper from my father’s office with drawings. I checked out every book on art in our small town library, and was happiest when creating. I would say that’s still a solid truth. Art infuses every bit of my life. I have a BFA in Painting, but I think the degree/experience that helped me the most was the BA I earned concurrently in Art History. There is nothing like immersing yourself in masterful artwork, dissecting it, learning about the struggles and challenges of prior generations of artists, and refining your own critical eye. The hours spent in a darkened lecture hall, viewing hundreds of slides, and discussing comparisons and contrasts has helped me immensely in learning to recognize and identify the qualities of “good art.” As a younger artist, I wanted my paintings to look exactly like my subjects. I worked in hyper realism, literally defining each hair. Gradually I became interested in emotional content and symbology, and began working in a looser, more colorful style, allowing the compositions to tell a story. In graduate school I even spent time doing installations and color field abstracted paintings. Currently I concentrate on building mood through use of expressive color and painting the atmosphere around the subject – and those are the things I’m best known for stylistically. I paint objects that make me smile. Which means there are a lot of animals in the mix, but also vintage books, old toys, and other odd items that I find delightful. I feel it is mostly important that there is soul in my artwork, whether a physical soul from a breathing creature or the soul that cherished memories carry. Painting animals means I rely on photographs as main sources for my paintings. However, working exclusively from photographs can seriously limit an artists’ options – after all, the camera has only one “eye” and is very skilled at lying. So it’s important to spend lots of time looking at my subjects, studying the light, and trying to work from a visual memory (or life) as much as possible. There is no substitute for knowing your subject matter. My studio is in my home, which gives me great flexibility to work when the opportunity presents itself. I flex my days around my family’s needs – grabbing about 8-10 hours in the studio each day, 6 days every week. Approximately 80% of my time is spent doing things other than making art – maintaining my mailing list, generating marketing materials, managing inventory, handling client correspondence, building lesson plans and class content and singlehandedly doing all the grunt work involved in running a small business.

Reilly 18” x 24”

http://paintingadogaday.blogspot.com/

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Kimberly Santini

Beamer 8” square

7th Inning Stretch 9” x 12” http://paintingadogaday.blogspot.com/

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Kimberly Santini

I’ve been a daily painter since 2006, and create at least 4 new pieces, usually Alla Prima, each week. The commitment to painting daily has taught me discipline and perseverance, often in the face of other obstacles that might otherwise have kept me out of the studio. The act of pushing paint regularly has helped me to work smarter and also freed me up to make – and learn from – a huge variety of mistakes! And painting daily has been a great work ethic model for my kids to see – they have grown up creating (or doing homework) alongside me. I work in acrylics, mostly because they are fume free (an important aspect when working in one’s home) and quick drying (another important aspect when there is a constant flow of kids coming and going). I’m also an impatient artist, and acrylic paints enable me to move at a faster pace. When I get an idea, I want to get immediately to the paint – no preliminary sketches or planning – which can mean lots of corrections on the painting. This can be a good thing in that the spontaneity remains visible in the finished piece, but it can also be a detriment when a composition fails due to incomplete planning or lack of thorough thought. And again, acrylics lend themselves perfectly to working in this fashion.

Like Her Momma 6” x 8”

http://paintingadogaday.blogspot.com/

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4 OClock 8” x 10”


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Kimberly Santini

Fiddlesticks 9� x 12�

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Telling Secrets 12” square

I’m also active in my community – I volunteer at local schools, teach art journaling, and help with programming at my local library. On top of all this, I manage an active exhibition calendar, share my art at juried events around the country and travel to teach multi-day painting workshops. I wouldn’t have it any other way – days spent playing with pools of color, and getting to share my passion with my family and the community of fans that’s built up on the internet. It’s a great gig! I am accepting a limited number of commission requests for 2014, including figural and animal portraits. My daily paintings can be seen at http://www.paintingadogaday.com and can be reached via email at ksantini@turtledovedesigns.com . Please follow me on Facebook, where I share in-process photos of paintings on my easel, among other art-related things . https://www.facebook.com/KimberlyKellySantini?ref=hl http://paintingadogaday.blogspot.com/


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Kimberly Santini Visual Language Feb 2014