Meet The Artist

Yana Slutskaya

Where are you from and where do you reside?

    I was born and raised in Russia but moved to the US and have been living in North Carolina and calling it home for the last several years.

 Did you go to art school?

    I went to Moscow State Academic Art College and graduated with a BA in Fine Arts with a focus on Painting and Theatrical Design.

When did you begin your artistic passion?

  From my yearly childhood, I always was drawn to painting, crafting and theater.  During my early school years, I was studying drawing and painting at the youth art studio.  I think my true interest towards developing an art career took place while living in Australia during my last year of High School.

 

 Where do you find your day-to-day inspiration?

    I find inspiration from an abundance of things. Nature, music, movies, books, gardening, walks, random conversations and interesting people.  I believe there is always something new to learn from meeting new people, traveling, and observing nature. I am very grateful and quite lucky to experience these wonderful things that enrich my life and give me fuel to create art.

Having a connection to

a unique piece of art is a special way to have something you can always cherish

"

What is the most challenging part of the artistic process for you?

   The most challenging part for me would be developing a complete sense of satisfaction upon completion of my artwork. I think for an artist it is easy to be quite critical of your own work and fall into a pattern of over working a piece while trying to create perfection. It is a fine line between unfinished and a complete piece of art. Being less critical of your final product and focusing more on enjoying the creative process behind it is a wonderful path I try to follow.
 

 How important is spontaneity in your art?

   I think painting in general has a fine balance between spontaneity and control. I try to balance these two. I also find that being more spontaneous is a great way of creating playfully random compositions that are driven by the moment, thrives on surprise and welcomes mistakes. I think allowing yourself more spontaneity can be a good way to free your artistic expression. Some of my abstract works are a good example of this.

Describe a typical day in the studio for you.

   I work from my home studio located on an old Southern farmland that is surrounded by beautiful trees and fields. I love how peaceful and quiet it is. I start the day by opening the windows in my studio to bring in a fresh breeze of air and the sound of happy birds chirping.  I like to find moments of solitude in order to focus before I start a new project. I don’t follow a specific schedule when I do my work, but rather when I feel compelled to paint. Living close to nature and its beauty gives me energy and inspiration to create. I love surrounding myself with pretty and motivational things, such as a bouquet of fresh flowers from my garden, an aromatic cup of coffee and an assortment of great music. 

How do you generally start a painting?

   I often just start by writing down my thoughts and creating very simple sketches. In addition to that I do research on the subject matter using my own photographs, books and other sources. I enjoy gradually building up my emotional connection to a new painting based on my own memories, experiences and knowledge. I like to start a new painting with the most striking colors or most appealing subject matter.

 

How do colors influence your artistic process?

   I think painting is generally all about colors! The world is made of millions of shades of color. Color is a driving power and emotional thing for me. Often, I find that nature is so vibrant and fascinating that it’s really hard to take it all in. In my paintings I tend to use extra bold and brilliant colors to intensify that initial internal feeling I have. I love how colors give me the power to create any spectrum of emotion and deep range of feelings in my art.

What are some of your other artistic interest and pursuits?

   I consider myself an avid photographer and I enjoy exploring and experimenting different genres of this art form. This includes still life as well as nature scenes, portraits, and fine art photography.   I have been fortunate to have my photography work displayed in shows and galleries.  I look forward to learning more about the magic and beauty of photography.