Sit Down With Our July '20 Featured Artist
Katarzyna Kmiecik is a professional artist and illustrator based in Puławy, Poland. She is best known for her dream-like depictions of landscapes. She specialises in watercolours, pencil and liquid pencil, which perfectly combines both techniques.
In 2012 she founded the Art School “Kreska”, where she continues to teach perspective drawing and watercolour. She presented her stellar teaching skills during many live and online demontrations.
Katarzyna represented Poland in, Fabriano In Aquarello 2019” (and 2020) and numerous other international exhibitions. Her work “Under the Green Cloud” was announced the best on the show during the group exhibition in Wrocław (Poland) - “100 WATERCOLOURS – Magic of Places”.
In the near future, Katarzyna plans to expand her artistic activities with a YouTube channel, a blog, and an online course.
What is your favourite medium to work with?
Watercolour is the art medium I’m choosing more often nowadays. I love how wild and unpredictable it is. Starting a new watercolour painting always feels like an adventure. I think I’m better in pencil, though. That’s why I felt like I must give liquid pencil a try.
Is there a supply you couldn’t live without?
I totally fell in love with Aquarius Watercolours by Roman Szmal (it’s a new polish brand of premium art supplies). Quinacridone Gold, Lavenda, Shadow Violet, Mineral Violet, Przybyszy’s Gray and Aquarius Green are simply amazing and most of them granulate very beautifully. My absolute favourite brush series right now is “911” from Roman Szmal. They seem to paint by themselves! Also, I’d have to learn how live without the Canson Moulin du Roy cold pressed watercolour paper, since it has been discontinued. It worked just perfect for me. I’d cherish my last sheet more if I knew.
What’s the best thing about being an artist?
The ability to inspire others. It still amazes me that I can create something deeply personal and get such warm and enthusiastic feedback on it.
Summer or Winter?
You ask difficult questions. Both of those seasons have their own kind of magic
Do you have any advise for approaching realism in art?
Achieving realism shouldn’t be your only goal. Realism will come with experience, and so will come the realisation that excessive realism makes some subjects feel flat – not expressing any thought or emotion. Sometimes the most realistic thing in art is the feeling you get when you look at the painting.
How do you know when a painting is complete?
I simply feel it. For me a painting is not a piece of art unless I (and hopefully everyone else) feel something when looking at it. This assumption has a significant impact on the creation of my works.
What subjects inspire you the most?
Old mossy trees, stones and ruins that have witnessed many human stories especially appeal to me. The same applies for the cloudy landscapes. I’m always amazed by the stories told by sunset skies. So many conflicting emotions are enchanted in those fleeting shapes and their colours!
What’s the most challenging thing about being an artist?
Probably the risk of never really making it in the art world, despite the real talent one might have. It’s not an easy career path. Getting noticed requires a huge amount of consistent work that never really ends and usually has to be done when the artist still doesn’t make much (or any) money from his art and therefore, doubt himself. Fighting for this dream becomes really hard if an artist doesn’t get enough support from his family.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I’d say: “Stop being so harsh on yourself. Enjoy the process and you’ll soon realize you’re better than you think.”
Do you prefer working in black and white or colour?
Working in colour definitely creates more space to convey emotions and gives me the opportunity to put all my passion on paper. Achieving the same thing in black and white artwork presents much bigger of a challenge. I like to be challenged every now and then, but mostly I just want to go wild with the colours..
What’s your favourite thing to do to relax?
I love lonely walks in the forest when I don’t hear anything but the sound of the wind in the treetops. It’s not something a was able to do since I have kids. Luckily, a good book and coffee work miracles, and obviously I relax when I create.