Artist Interviews 2022
By Johnny Otto
You are a self-taught artist but somewhat influenced by your Grandmother’s landscape paintings. What other artists influenced you when you were younger that may have seeped into your current work?
As child, I loved drawing animation especially Disney. My grandmother encouraged me to paint, I just never thought that was possible because I didn’t take classes. I never have taken an art class, I always loved the arts. Margaret Hudson was a local sculptor in Fresno that I admired. I would copy her figurines and draw them in my notepad.
You’ve been involved in a great deal of art festivals. Can you tell us about those experiences and what you may have learned about the art market and what buyers and dealers are looking for?
Showcasing at the Louvre as a modern art master, one year from the day I started, will forever be a highlight of my art career. Art is super subjective, I never know what will sell. The curator of my first show said “Don’t worry, all of your pieces will eventually sell!” He was right, with time everything sells!
Painting a mural at FameYard must have been a highlight, as well. How did that come about and can you tell us about that and what FY is and why it’s become so important for artists?
The FameYard was a huge highlight and such a honor. I owe that to Eddie Donaldson, he believed in me. It was exciting getting pushed out of my comfort zone. I owe all of my current success to him. The FameYard allowed for my name to get out there and with a different audience. It felt great to be included amongst the greatest in game.
Are you currently showing or have any shows coming up that we nee to know about?
I have pieces up at Love South Bay, and my next show will be presented by Southbay Magazine “Return to Harmony” at Resin in Hermosa on September 24th.
Are there any artists that you admire that you’d like to collaborate with and why?
There are several artists that I admire. I’d love to collaborate with Ashley Longshore. She is hilarious and a brilliant artist. I admire Retna and Shepard Fairey's work as well. I’d gladly take any opportunity that came my way.
How is it juggling kids and an art career? Are they interested in your art or becoming artists themselves?
My life life is definitely busy as a single mom to four kids. Everything has to be organized and scheduled. I set up the day into quadrants, that’s the only way I have been successful with my days for both my kids and art. My girls are both very artistic. They are interested in different arts. One wants to be a fashion designer and the other a TV and film editor.
What music inspires you? Do you listen when you work or are you influenced by any style of music?
I love country music. There is a song by Cody Johnson’Til You Can’t, that I find super inspirational. When opportunity comes our way we gotta run fearlessly with it! That song always pumps me up!
Other than painting, what can you tell us about yourself that people might not know? Any other hobbies or passions?
I love to travel! I have been to 42 countries so far. I love to stay fit. I’m an open water swimmer. I have swam the Hermosa/Manhattan Beach pier to pier three times.