Monday, 27 April 2015

BIMU Interviews: Artist Lise Richardson!

Every now and again, I'll try to find someone to interview and pop them into my blog! :)
My first interview is with a young local artist in Central Finland, named Lise Richardson. We met through a crafting group and Lise is actually the one who designed my lovely header on this blog! Enjoy! BIMU
Freija on the left and Lise on the right!
Have you always been artistic as a child?? I'm a 21 year old illustrator. I think it's fair to say I was always the arty child of any given group. I went through packets after packets of printer paper - drawing ponies and other cute animals as any little girl would.
You're half Finnish and half British...which side do you feel most comfortable with? (I.e. English was language vs Finnish, British comedy vs Finnish television, cultural lifestyle comparison or preferences). Well well... Without "siding" with one half, I have to say I find it easier to express myself in English, and I'm a big fan of British television in general. That's not to say Finland hasn't got a lot going for it, because there's plenty I miss whenever I leave (rye bread and Karelian pasties, mainly). I think eventually it'd be nice to live in England again simply because there's a lot going on all the time in arts and culture, which is something I'd love to be more involved with. Here it's not quite so easy to connect with other artists, or actually people at all come to think of it, but maybe in a way that's quite nice in it's own way - I like my own space like anybody with Finnish blood! 
Favorite drawing techniques these days?? Apart from drawing outlines for paintings, I mainly only draw in the strictest sense of the term when I'm illustrating my blog (Pawprints to Bath). This changes every now and again of course, I've been painting a lot for the past six months but I may move onto other techniques again soon - that's the great thing about being an artist, you can switch whenever you want. 
Worst experience with ____ tool (pen, paint whichever)? Since I mainly work in watercolour at the moment, the absolute worst thing that can happen is spilling your mixing water on a painting. This happens more often than I care to admit!
What do you think the artists of the past (Van Gogh, Monet, Picasso etc) would think if they saw the art of today?? (I.e. The different techniques, especially digital.) I think perhaps some would find today's art a bit in-your-face, maybe even obscene if you consider what a leap it is from the work of Van Gogh to somebody contemporary like Damien Hirst or Tracey Emin. On the other hand I reckon somebody like Picasso would be really interested in all the artists of today who've been inspired by his own work, and perhaps might even find digital art not to be too far from the traditional media of his own time. After all, it's the same basic idea whether traditional or digital, you're trying to create something worth looking at.
You have a huge love for dogs, if you could have any breed or create a mixed breed -what would it be?? Right now I'm completely obsessed with terriers, I just LOVE beardy dogs! Skye and Sealyham terriers are some of my favourites. 
Tell us a bit about your two gals, Kara and Freija? Aww my girls. Kara is my eleven year old, grumpy but glam lady of the house. The essential Tibetan spaniel really. She's been a source of inspiration for essentially me entire art career. Freija is my little yorkiepoo buddy, she's been around for nearly five years now and she really makes me laugh. She's quite popular online, the little weirdo!
Dog Art Print - Pink dog art - A4 art print - Tibetan Spaniel - spaniel illustration - dog painting - home decor - dog lover gift - pink art
A recent piece done by Lise of her other dog, Kara.
Do you only draw, and recently crochet??  I suppose you could say I do a bit of everything, I do like trying my hand at all manner of techniques. I paint A LOT in gouache these days, more so than anything else, but my sets of colouring pencils HAVE been catching my eye lately...
How long does it take to design an image for a single greeting card?   My new range of cards is fun since I can manage a design or two in a day - the hard part is coming up with good captions!
Where can these cards be found in Finland?? Do you sell them outside of Finland too? Right now my only stockist is Harjun Paperi here in Jyväskylä, where they sell my Scenic Dogs-range of postcards. For all my newer designs plus greeting cards, art prints and gift items, pop over to my Etsy shop!
Look familiar?
Kara being her glam self! :)
Freija as well!
Do you have a favorite art museum? My absolute favourite art museum has to be the Towner in Eastbourne, England. I go there whenever I'm in town and there's always something interesting to see, old and new.
Is there a particular art style or artist that inspires you? I'm fascinated by artists from the turn of the century and the late 1800s. Lately I've been really into the work of James Tissot and Edmund Blair Leighton, but I suppose one of my main influences over the years has been the Art Nouveu movement. I find modern art perhaps slightly less accessible, but Pop art in itself and especially Kitsch has definitely had a big impact on my own work and themes.
Many governments, are cutting back on funding to the arts departments. How do you feel about this?? It's not good, to say the least. Art and culture is just as important as any other field, and it's a real shame the governments of many countries aren't prepared to invest in it. I know that it's tough for everybody, but I do wish something could be done to really boost the backing for art.
Where did you complete your studies? I finished my vocational degree in 2013 at Jyväskylä Educational Consortium in Petäjävesi, near Jyväskylä. I'd switched from Hyvinkää Art School halfway through my studies, but both places had a lot to teach me in both fine art and photography.
If you could have done your studies anywhere in the world, where would you have gone? I think getting my first degree here in Finland was a good choice (partly because I got to do an exchange work experience trip to my English home, Eastbourne) it's free and I got to see what I liked and didn't like in the broad field of art and photography. This year I'll be moving to Bath in England to start my BA in graphic communication, so we'll see how that compares!
When you aren't drawing or crocheting doggies, what are you more than likely doing??  Haha, nothing particularly exciting I'm afraid - I'll be walking the dogs or watching Heartbeat with my mum. Terribly domestic, I know! I also read a lot, detective stories and classics mainly.
If you won a million euros, what would you do with it?? Gosh, there's a thought. I'd probably start up a shop-come-gallery to sell my work and perhaps get some other artists involved too. That'd be the sensible thing to do. What's left from that I'd use on box sets, books, and antiques. I love antiques.
If you weren't an artist, what would be your next choice of career? Oddly I've never thought of myself as anything other than an artist. I used to volunteer at Marie Curie Cancer Care's charity shop back in Eastbourne, and I quite enjoyed pretending to be a shopkeeper, so perhaps I'd work in an antiques shop or something.
What's one technique or craft you do now but would like to better yourself in? I'm quite happy with my results in gouache, but there's also lots I can improve on - that's fine by me though, I'm happy as long as I'm learning.
What's one you'd like to learn?? I love learning new techniques and crafts, I really enjoyed learning crochet last year (I've not had time to do it a lot this year, but it's a lot of fun), and perhaps other traditional crafts would be interesting to try. I've done a little bit of screen-printing in art school years ago, and that's one thing I'm keen to learn properly too!
You're very young, and accomplishing a lot! What do you see yourself doing in five years? Ten and more? I suppose my main wish is to be creating art like I do now, and have others enjoying it and preferably buying my work! I'd really love to get out there and have my art recognised. That studio would be a plus, too!
What is something you want people to know about you and your work? Perhaps that I put a lot of love into everything I create, and that I really hope people can see that, and enjoy it as much as I do. What sort of advice would you give to someone wanting to be an artist? I think the key to being an artist is not taking yourself too seriously; do the thing you love, and be the best you can be. Every artist mucks up occasionally, the main thing is to convince everybody that yes, of course it's meant to look like that! Oh, and it doesn't hurt to get in with other artists, go and make some connections, you'll thank yourself later.
Favourite food, colour, ice cream flavor, 90's boy band, curse word? Avocado toast, pastel pink, peanut butter, Westlife, wanker.
Favourite book and movie you could watch non stop? Wuthering Heights, and Withnail & I.
Also, if you could meet any celebrity in the world, who would it be? Ricky Wilson (of the Kaiser Chiefs)
What are the best and worst things to give to an artist? Best: original artwork from an artist they love. Worst: tacky art supplies like pens from the petrol station
Best and worst things to say to an artist: Best: any real compliment like saying they adore the work. Worst: I personally find it a bit iffy when people call my work "striking".
Best song that describes you:  Eez-eh by Kasabian

You can find Lise on a variety of social media, I'll even link it for you below! Her Etsy Shop
Pawprints to Bath - a blog about her soon to be adventure of moving back to study in the UK with Freija! - her main page which gives you access to her shop and her blogs, videos and photos! Instagram

**Photos used in this post were used by permission from Lise Richardson and from her Etsy shop listings. **

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