DeviantArt: Sara Richard

Today’s DeviantArt interview is with Sara Richard.

Where do you find your artistic inspiration?

Most of my artistic inspiration comes from artists of the Art Nouveau and Art Deco era as well as Japanese ink paintings. I love the organic lines of Art Nouveau and the design of Art Deco. The simple compositions of Sumi- e (Japanese ink paintings) has always fascinated me with its simplicity and use of negative space. Favorite artists that I am heavily inspired by are Alphonse Mucha, Klimt, Erte, Margaret and Francis MacDonald Mackintosh, and Tamara De Lempicka. Those artists are from quite a while ago though, more recent artists that I am very inspired by are Eric Canete, Susan Seddon-Boulet, William Stout and Michael Parkes just to name a few. They all have such a whimsical and imaginative way that is so cool.  I also go to a lot of comic conventions and there are so many artists there with such awesome work that I come home with so much inspiration, there’s not enough hours in the day to do all the new ideas I come up with!
Outside of artists, I find inspiration from my frequent hang gliding. I feel like the airy-ness and organic lines I like to paint kind of reflect that, especially  all the girls with birds that I paint. I love to draw birds especially but other animals are fun to draw too, so anything Richard Attenborough narrates tends to be very inspirational. Oh and dinosaurs. I love Dinosaurs.
Recently a trip to the Queen Mary (That big haunted ship in Long Beach, California.) has sparked an idea for a story I hope to work on this winter! I guess inspiration comes from everywhere for me, whatever I’m into at the time!

How would you describe your style?

I would say my style does reflect the love of Art Deco and Art Nouveau in line quality and composition. I tend to get the term “whimsical” a lot from others who look at my work. I like not having to stick to a solid subject so all the lines tend to be a bit spur of the moment when I’m creating a piece. Especially a lot of the swirls and squiggles. I try and capture kinetic energy in even the most still of subjects anything to give the piece life!


What types of tools do you use?

I work primarily in Acrylic paint, usually on paper. Sometimes for quick projects I use watercolor, but I’m not as comfortable with it as acrylic, which I’ve used foooorever. I only use digital if there is a fix on the pencil drawing which I scan in, edit if necessary and the print out to transfer to paper with graphite sheets. I love getting paint on my hands and the occasional papercuts that comes with rifling through paper to find the right background tone. Working too long on the computer makes me so tired, but after finishing a painting I feel so awesome! It’s a good addiction.

Are there any projects you’re currently working on?

Current projects include the idea I mentioned before about the Queen Mary. Working title is “An Art Deco Ghost Story” Which I feel is pretty self- explanatory. I am also compiling a (hopefully hardcover) book of my original paintings. I get so much more work done in winter, so I plan to have a good chunk of these projects close to completion, in summer it’s hard to sit at a desk when it’s so sunny out and there is flying to do! I’m also really trying to promote my work and look into new opportunities. I have been trying to strengthen my portfolio with more illustrations with intentions for covers in comics and books, posters, and gallery work. I’m really excited for this upcoming year.

Anything else you’d like to add?

I guess, to keep checking out my online gallery and portfolio for my blog and upcoming appearance schedule. I go to a ton of conventions around the country and Canada. Someday I hope to go overseas to some of the conventions they have over there. To any budding artists,  the most important thing i can say is never take a tough critique to heart, I feel like that is one of the hardest hurdles a young artist has to overcome. You’re not going to please everyone, keep in mind the critique isn’t personal: it’s business. I have to say though, whenever I get a critique that is sort of disheartening, I just sing Katy Perry’s  “Firework” in my head and think, “They’ll see someday.” Just stay positive! If you keep trying you’ll get there. Also have business cards and a website, let people see your work online! Enter contests! Get into gallery shows! Get your work out there!

Vulture Muse
This piece was done when I wanted to add to my collections of “muses” (most of the girls with the birds or other animals, sort of my fashion illustration/natural illustration combination) I really wanted to draw a vulture. I saw “Dinner for Schmucks” and the vulture in it was so cool. But then I saw a baby vulture picture and the idea of having a sort of sweet/scary muse being sort of a mother type to this carcass eating bird resulted in this piece. It’s one of my favorite darker pieces and was in the Art Below exhibit in a London subway station last year.

Klimt Oiran
This is a piece I want to include in a series of oiran (like geisha but more of the “companion” type) I want to juxtapose these painted ladies with odd objects, different style and surroundings to sort of appease my artistic ADD that I feel I have. Other oiran I’ve painted have been holding welding torches with giant goggles, a bubble pipe and chameleons. This one of course is  inspired by one of my favorite artists, Gustav Klimt


I love painting dinosaurs. They are so open to interpretation and so much fun. This was a piece I did when I was trying to figure out how to add backgrounds that wouldn’t overwhelm the subject. I think this one worked out pretty well with the negative space in the back around the dino being the far away mountain, it didn’t take away from the focal point. Yeah I like this one. Plus purple, green and yellow is a fun palette!

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