3DValley Featured 2D Artist for July 2008 – Christian Kolle. Christian is an artist from the US and is “practicing” art for more than 30 years. Beside painting he also has a interest in other forms like bonsai, sculpting, & mechanical/ computer art. Please read the interview below to get to know Christian and his work a bit better.
Christa: Can you tell us a bit about yourself: Who you are and what you do in your daily life?
Christian: I am Christian Kolle, I am a practicing (like a doctor) artist, and I draw, paint, sculpt, and learn as many of the other arts as well i.e. Bonsai, mechanical and computer. I have been an artist for a little over 30 years, knowing arts are my chief examination in life, living and finishing projects, that I start and deal with my work as I am able.
Christa: What kind of materials do you use for your artwork?
Christian: I have used many types of materials from objects found on the side of the road as I am out walking, feathers, and bones. I have in the past stuck mostly with acrylic paints but found oil paints to be much more involved and have clarity and depth that acrylics just do not have. Lately I try not to limit myself to mediums of one sort or another, as my project list requires more and more adaptation. I try to learn all materials as the materials are constantly changing with awareness of them and exposure to them.
Christa: Do you remember the first time you knew you wanted to be an artist?
Christian: I was really young about 3, I was drawing all the comic characters, and thinking how great that was I got older and kept drawing and figured it was better to be able to do this than anything else I have done. When I was 4 or 5 I was asked what I wanted to be when I grew up and at that time I knew and have mostly stuck with that regimentation.
Christa: Where did you go to school and how did they prepare you for your career?
Christian: I went to school a few different places, my best teachers always let me have free reign showing me paying for school was pretty dumb. I tended a Graphic Design school in Arizona and also a little college in Denver and a few classes here and there but I found if I really want to learn something it is the outside world that really shows you the tricks you are trying to learn.
Hmmm, calling art my career is tough; I get love from my work that is more like a wife. I have lived in just about all the climates the U.S. has to offer and those have been the better schools than per se a building with people. Nature is a great teacher.
Flower wild 1.5
Catdance – Acrylic on canvas
Christa: Can you tell us a bit of the way you work on your art?
Christian: I tend to think about a piece sometimes for years, I have an Idea that sticks in my mind since early high school about 20 years now and I still have not painted. Most of the work I do involves a lot of thinking, planning and preparation. Sometimes I gather materials for a while because I see a project I might not even be thinking of. As I go through I see what I need and what I think I might need. I do use my eraser occasionally, and have even used my white paint, never follow any rules I have seen Art made out of complete garbage and discarded in minutes, that would make the Mona Lisa roll back on the floor and weep.
Sometime I draw something out, usually if it has to have many facets/ elements, sometimes I just use a canvas like a sketchpad, and even amaze myself when a painting I have been thinking on for 10 years just rolls off the canvas in a matter of minutes, kind of like when you cannot remember some ones name. When the piece gets to the 3d realm it usually has a few drawings involved first then sometimes a smaller sculpt first.
Christa: You use a lot of color in your work. Can you tell us some more about the way you choose the colors?
Christian: Colors are fun they tend to make for a more complex work than people realize until they see the work in person; I choose colors because they either flow together or tend to contrast each other. I also tend to use colors that seem to offer emotions and a little healing at times. Colors have a lot of value for me they bring it all together and yet they let you see something differently just for their heartfelt values alone.
Christa: In many of you images you paint a female feline creature. I especially like Standing moons, that’s one of my favorite images of you. Do you have any special reason to paint her? Does she mean something?
Christian: Standing moons, I get a lot of different reactions with that painting, some people see a bird a some a cat woman and others who knows… She is my definition of my ideal I suppose a little shark like a tad cat and all very feminine. She is Bast I suppose, the goddess of Medicine in Egyptian times. I feel she is my soul and yet so serene. I paint here as a commission to myself to create a being my equal someone that all the guys will leave alone because she is a badass, & knows herself. I also think of here as form of a totem being. Complete in her elemental spirits.
Standing moons – Acrylic on canvas
Christa: Who or what would you describe as having the most influences on your work/ style?
Christian: I Look at nature and see it as pure and not needing any work, all here complete, yet a true form of inspiration. I loved comic book art when I was younger and still like quality artists’ work but I really look at the master painters throughout the eras, seeing that there is a lot to learn I also get a kick out of the other artists and that really includes any one who has developed a technique. Lao Tzu, Beethoven, the Shaman you name it I might find interest.
Christa: Besides painting you are also a sculptor. Can you tell us a bit more about the other projects and your reason to work with various materials?
Christian: Every material has a finish, hardness or softness and those materials give life a new meaning as you are working with a material, lately I have been carving stones and they have a different flow than say wood and they know what they are at the core versus what you want them to be. So it is interesting to see something in the form it wants to be, versus a white piece of paper which tends not to care so much.
Christa: How would you describe your own style?
Christian: My style, which one, on the outside I tend not to stick out so much as I am not really looking for immediate attention. I tend to stay semi cartoonish as I really like line work but I also sometimes work in form, abstract and very rarely realistic as I know there is not a lot of difference between these styles, more than anything I like to surprise myself and shoot for recognition, also for those moments when nobody can really grasp what it is I am doing but they still like it.
Transitional being – Acrylic on Canvas
Flower wild 2
Christa: Is there a painting/ illustration that you wished you painted/ created?
Christian: Probably a couple, some works by Frazetta, Escher, maybe Michelangelo and da Vinci, maybe Raphael. I have seen a lot of work that I do have a little jealousy towards but that is just one of the joys of living a solitary life and the ability to see another artists work stand up to the pressures of time.
Christa: Which areas of creating art do you enjoy the most?
Christian: My favorite part of art is when you get to see a painting that you were not thinking about when you started looking and or working so then when you finish it you know that whenever someone sees it they will just stand back and go WTF, sweet!
Christa: Where do you pratice your art?
Christian: Right now I have a little campground next to a stream in the forest, and it is beautiful, I also go to my local café, when I have one, my bedroom. I want to upgrade and get a studio space to separate my art from my bedroom though, probably need a multi-room house.
Angel of the everchanging box
Acrylic on canvas with metallics
Christa: How did your personal website/ portfolio help you to promote your own art?
Christian: I am not sure, it seems that I get visitors on my site but it really is just a distraction, most of the time as I tend not do many sales.
Christa: Do you have any tips for beginning artists?
Christian: Keep at it. Art will take you anywhere you want to go… All you can do is know being an artist will show you the real world no matter what anyone says, so think and know source.
Christa: Are you currently working on something that you can share with us?
Christian: I am working on a children’s book about spirituality and the journey it provides through many aspects, mostly it will have levels to it. Also I am working on something that will leave the masses on their knees for a little while a painting that might truly shock people on many levels.
Christa: Besides 3Dvalley.com, which other graphic sites do you visit regularly?
Christian: I have been kind of out of the computer scene for a while. I will probably be back online in the next year but for now I limit my internet to keep my thoughts in check. I do check my Myspace occasionally though.
Christa: Is their something you can’t work without?
Christian: Yeah, money, food and shelter and the usual tools, I occasionally listen to music but get tired of the radio, and hate flipping through CD’s. What I really need to do my art is almost golden like silence so that I can truly tune into my aspects, good temperature without direct sun works well.
Christa: What do you do when you are not working or creating something?
Christian: Contemplating the next work of art. Inner work. Occasionally I socialize. I am very much like a cat like that though. I only tend to come around when people need me for more than just their work.
Christa: Thanks for your time and the interview Christian!