Interview with the Artist: Erik Davis

Three hardworking students will win giveaways in my workshop, the 2 Week MoDeRn ArT Challenge.  And the prizes are (drumroll, please)...
  1. One free year of Skillshare membership,
  2. A cookbook illustrated by outstanding artists from They Draw and Cook, and 
  3. A set of four handpainted watercolor paintings by artist Erik Davis.  Each painting is on archival Strathmore 500 series paper and designed with Da Vinci watercolors and PITT pens.

Images from Erik's blog

I will announce winners this Sunday, but in the meantime, I wanted to introduce you to contemporary artist, Erik Davis, and his color-infused work.  Special thanks to Erik for taking time away from his art and his garden to give us some insight into his work.

Nicole:  What’s your favorite subject matter to draw or paint?

Erik: My favorite subject matter for sketching is nature: anything nature-based or found outside including flowers, trees, treelines, an old tree stump taken over by flowers, and old fences. The occasional little outbuilding or street scene may pop up from time to time, but nature is my go-to subject.

Daily Sketching 040816-1

From Erik's blog, which you can follow on Wordpress or by email

N: What’s your most used art supply?

E: My most used art supply is the Faber-Castell PITT pen, either size S or F. I use these pens for everything. They work great on all papers and surfaces - watercolor paper, sketch paper...everything.

N: When you need a break from making art, what do you do to relax, unwind, and come back ready to make art again?

E: I have two favorite art breaks. Working in the gardens and LEGO. Love them both! Nothing resets my brain faster and more efficiently than working in the yard. It's my ultimate reset button. Actually just being outside resets the old head. The LEGO obsession is just fun. Either working from kits or free building, I find the little plastic bricks to be very therapeutic.

Image from Erik's Facebook page, where he posts images most often. He accepts friend requests from art fans. You may want to message him privately first.

N: How do you stay inspired?

E: That's tough. I find different ways to stay inspired. If I find I'm having troubles getting motivated or finding that right subject matter, I start to just doodle little robots or birds doing human things. These usually are found on scrap paper in my room or at work, but they rarely see any future projects. I also try to create an alter-ego cartoon figure for myself. I haven't really finished one, but it's mainly just to keep the gears moving.

N: How do you overcome the fear of the blank page or blank canvas?

E: When it comes to a blank page that seems larger than life, or a new sketchbook that is too nice to work in, the best way I have found to get started is to put away the pencil, grab a pen, and just start making shapes. I just commit to getting marks on the page. I may not have a plan, but I just start making marks and getting ink down. I usually end up with a flower or a tree, but grabbing a pen and jumping in works really good.

N: I loved your holiday cards and sent them out last year. How can we follow your work or find out about fantastic new things from you?

E: I update my website and Twitter account, but I post to Facebook most often.

erik davis

Thanks, Erik!


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