Archive for artists

The Paradox of Creativity

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on September 21, 2013 by Lisa Mills

I just read a great article on people who are creative and some of their personality traits. Click here to read the article.

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Reflecting on “Reflections”

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on October 14, 2012 by Lisa Mills

“Reflections on Heavy Metal” received the Best in Category (Professional Artist Category) award at CPSA District Chapter 215 Exhibition in Richardson, Texas yesterday.  I can honestly say that I didn’t see that coming.  Our local chapter has many talented artists, both professional and non-professional and my artwork was obviously facing tough competition.  I’m thrilled to have this honor.  I’m even more thrilled for my artwork to be hanging in a gallery with so many artists that I admire greatly.  If you live in the area, take time to go see the exhibit at the Eisemann Center.  The pieces are beautiful, diverse and unbelievably all colored pencil.

Work in Progress…

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on October 6, 2012 by Lisa Mills

The piece I’m currently working on will be a companion piece to “Reflections on Heavy Metal,” a winner in the CPSA International Exhibition last summer.  I haven’t titled it yet, but it will be a triptych like the Fender guitar piece.  Here’s a glimpse at one of the panels in the triptych.  (This, like all my work, is Copyright protected.)

This piece is 100% colored pencil on Art Spectrum Colorfix Suede paper.  I wanted to challenge myself and so far, so good!  I’m working on the third panel of the piece now and it is proving to be the most difficult.  I hope to have it completed within the month and be able to move on to something else.

Inspiration is…

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on October 2, 2012 by Lisa Mills

I find it interesting to talk to other artists and find out what inspires them.  For me, it’s pretty simple.  My artwork is inspired by color, nature and how light reacts to the surfaces of objects.  As far as artists go, the Impressionists have always been my inspiration.  Monet, Renoir, Toulouse-Lautrec and Pissaro all bring a fascinating interpretation of how they see the world and subsequently put it on a canvas.  I love how they are able to look at something and see colors that most of us cannot fathom are there.

Claude Monet
Water-Lily Pond

Looking at the above painting by Monet at his beloved Giverny, I am amazed at the diverse range of color in what our eye interprets as a mostly green field.  Now, look at the following photo that I took this summer at Giverny of the actual pond he used as reference:

Giverny – France, 2012

Monet’s dynamic use of color bring the lily pond to life.  The yellows bring light to the canvas.  The blues depict cool shadows.  Texture allows the viewer to feel the leaves.  Reflection shows the stillness of the water.

The Impressionists were not well thought of when they came on the scene in the mid to late 1800’s.  Their style and bold use of color was a drastic departure from the dark, dramatic and realistic styles of their predecessors.  I’m thankful that they forged that path for artists who came after them.  Anytime I get an opportunity to see an Impressionist exhibit, I take advantage of it. I always learn something about how to use color and texture in my artwork.  Who inspires you?

Work in Progress…

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on June 22, 2012 by Lisa Mills

Even though it’s summer and things should have slowed down, my time in studio has been reduced.  I find myself spending much of my time in the car chauffeuring one certain teenager around to various activities.  This piece I’m posting here is one in progress.  It’s another three-panel (tryptich) study of an instrument and again, I’m taking advantage of bright sunlight and captivating reflections.  The background isn’t filled in yet as I will decide once the whole piece is complete what color the background shall be.  Can you guess the instrument?

A Departure From My Norm…

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on March 16, 2012 by Lisa Mills

I just finished this piece that I have entered in the CPSA (Colored Pencil Society of America) International Competition.  Works entered are evaluated by a judge and then, if selected (juried in) are shown at the international show and evaluated further for awards.  Just being juried into the show would be a HUGE deal for me, as I failed to make the cut last year.  I decided to depart from my animal art for this piece and do something completely different. This is my son’s Fender Stratocaster.  It’s all in colored pencil and done on Art Spectrum Colorfix Suede paper.  I loved how the paper, which has a velvety surface, combined with the wax and clay in the pencils creating a very painterly effect.  Here’s the piece entitled, “Reflections on Heavy Metal.”  Wish me luck in this year’s competition!  The results are not out until late April.

“Reflections on Heavy Metal” 15.5″x8″
Colored Pencil on Colorfix Suede Paper
Copyright 2012, Lisa M. Mills

Commission Accomplished…

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on October 15, 2011 by Lisa Mills

I delivered my first commission piece this morning!  My client was a sweet friend from college whose family had lost their beloved Golden Retriever last year.  The artwork will be a gift for her husband for Christmas.

I wasn’t prepared for how nervous I’d be creating this piece for a client.  My biggest goal in illustrating animals (and people, for that matter) is to capture their personality in their facial expressions.  If I can’t recreate the expression, I have not succeeded…and that is just for my artwork, in general.  Add in a paying client and I want to create the character in the animal and satisfy the client.  It was a bit intimidating, to say the least.

This piece took me about 3 – 4 weeks to complete.  I was working from a photograph and the final piece was about 8 times larger than the photo.  It is in colored pencil and oil and wax pastel on Stonehenge 300 gsm. paper.  I met with my friend once before I got started to see exactly what she envisioned.  I met with her again when the piece was mostly complete to “tweak” parts of the illustration that were not quite right.  I texted several iPhone photos of the drawing while it was in progress.

Here is a photo of the final work:

She was a beautiful dog and all of her photos showed what a great personality she had.  I love the grin on her face!  My friend was happy with the final product and for that I am grateful.  As an artist however, I’m never 100% satisfied with anything I create.  There is always room for improvement.  I also feel like if I ever become completely happy with a piece, then I probably have become complacent.  I look at each piece I do as a learning experience and I always hope to grow with each step.  Thank you, my friend for trusting me with this beautiful girl! I can’t wait to see what your husband thinks on Christmas morning.