We recently had the pleasure of visiting Michelle Arnold Paine's new studio space at the Waltham Mills Studios. While the great north light shinned through gorgeous windows, we chatted about Michelle's work, picked up a few new paintings, and just enjoyed her space.
We always love getting a sneak peek into an artist studio, especially since each one is different. We'd like to share a few pictures in the hopes that you will enjoy seeing it as much as we did.
We thought it would be fun to share a collection of progress images from Waltham-based artist Leo Mancini-Hresko! Leo has a great eye for unique vantages and has the ability to make some of Boston's most iconic images his own.
A great image to remind us of all the snow this past winter provided us -- refreshing during this current heat wave we're having! Leo enjoys getting out and painting plein air, even in the snow.
Three images showing Leo's process on a painting of Boston from his vantage on the BU Bridge. The last image shows the piece in Leo's studio -- soon to be in the gallery!
Painting the BU Bridge this past February.
Three images from a recent painting session at the base of the Longfellow Bridge. Can't wait to see the final painting!
You can catch Leo painting all around Boston, but we're thrilled that he will be joining us this July for a demo right here in Beacon Hill!
Leo also has some fantastic workshops, studio demos, and of course on-going studio classes on the books this summer: Leo summer teaching.
What do you like to paint? I like to paint people -- because I like people. I love to study people in their daily routines.
When did you start painting? Not that long ago actually. I've been a professional artist for about 5 years now.
On average how long does it take for you to complete a large composition? Does the time vary depending on the size of the painting? It takes me months to complete a single piece. I normally work with larger paintings -- around 4' x 5' each or larger. With really large works I use small brushes, which takes longer, but gives me the detail I am looking for. Small pieces, however, if I really focus I can finish within a week.
Why do you use a small brush on large scale paintings? Small brushes enable me to pay close attention to the small details in the human body. In reality, people aren't perfectly smooth -- everyone's body has various textures and skin tone variations. The small brush allows for a more realistic depiction. Each brushstroke produces a new breadth of color and texture.
What type of environment do you like to work in? I always work with music. Depending on what music is playing effects how the painting goes. Certain songs motivate the scene. If you want something refined, put something mellow on. I always paint in the studio, isolated from distractions and prying eyes.
What is your favorite piece that you've ever painted? 'Mirrors Eye View' is my favorite painting, it was recently used on the cover of Dig Boston magazine.
What is your favorite piece of art? Edvard Munch 'The Kiss'.
What is your favorite Greater Boston area museum? The deCordova Museum in Lincoln, MA.
What do you want your viewer to experience when they see your work? I want the viewer to experience the classic "body tingle" -- a full body wave of emotion. I want the everyday person to walk up to the work, see it, and understand the message without having to be a trained art major. I want my art to be simple enough -- to be accessible to the general public, yet stimulating for art intellectuals.
Check out more of Nick's work on his website! We're anxiously awaiting a few new small pieces from Nick that should arrive this summer -- we'll share them as soon as they're here.
Over the summer, you may notice a bright, new face at the gallery -- that's Jess Holley, our intern! Just to give you all a head start on getting to know her, we asked her a few questions:
Hometown: Born and raised in Andover, Massachusetts.
High School: Phillips Academy Andover.
College: Bowdoin College -- Anthropology and Art History double major!
Favorite Book: The Great Gatsby.
What do you do with your free time? I enjoy painting and drawing as well as traveling and spending time with family and friends. And I can’t forget my love for the beach in the summer!
Favorite beach: Lambert’s Cove Beach, Martha’s Vineyard.
Favorite work of art: Sistine Chapel.
How did you develop your interest in the art world? As a small child, I grew up admiring the work of local painters. Some of my favorite childhood memories are my frequent visits to museums and galleries in the Boston area with my mother. Throughout high school and in my first two years of college I pursued my passion for the arts by taking several visual art classes. I eventually decided to focus on oil painting.
Best museum in the world: The Louvre.
Artist you would choose to be re-born as? Edward Degas.
Favorite painting in the gallery currently: ‘White Light’ by Daniele Cestari.
Favorite summer treat: Coffee Oreo Ice Cream.
Favorite Food: Chocolate.
Super power if you had one? To fly of course!
Favorite word: Elegant.
Least favorite word: Moist.
What do you want to do when you graduate? It is my dream to pursue a career in a gallery [or museum] after college and establish myself as a powerful force in the art world. I am excited to see what this summer has in store at Sloane Merrill Gallery!
Favorite thing about the gallery: The opportunity to meet and chat with local artists -- to learn about their passion for art and how they go about creating their work.
We are so excited to have Jess join us before she heads off to Rome for her fall semester. We hope that you can stop by the gallery and meet her!