It can be a challenge in the art world to stand out and appeal to art collectors and stay true to who you are as an artist. Have you faced these struggles in your art career? My guest Nicolas Uribe is familiar with this challenge in his career and was kind enough to explore the topic in our conversation. Nicolas graduated with Honours from School of Visual Arts in NY. He has had numerous solo exhibitions both in the US and South America and has exhibited his work in Mexico, Spain, Egypt, among other countries. We cover a wide range of topics in our conversation including the path to finding your artistic voice, exploring your technical limitations, what it takes to contextualize the prices for your paintings, and much more. I can’t wait for you to get a glimpse of Nicolas’ fascinating perspective!
Finding your voice.
One of the universal experiences of an artist is the journey of finding your voice as an artist. Many of my guests over the years have opened up and shared their story of finding that unique creative voice within. In my conversation with Nicolas, it took a bit of a different direction as we discussed the technical aspects of forging your own path. Nicolas says that it was a challenge for him to clear the voices of his instructors from his mind as he sought to understand the uses of color in his artwork. While he is thankful for the amazing education he received, he acknowledges that part of growing as an artist is not only finding your unique creative voice but finding your own technical understandings as well.
Looking beyond the surface.
As artwork becomes increasingly accessible to the public via the internet, there seems to be a renewed focus on the immediate and the surface value of artwork. Let’s face it, much of the general public struggle to see the layers and complexity of the artwork that we labor over. What is the solution? How do we move past the surface and help the public to look deeper? Nicolas doesn’t just lay this at the feet of the public, he says that artists are looking deep enough too. He encourages fellow artists and his students to force themselves to dive deeper and ask the tough questions that make them go beyond initial impressions.
Paint what matters to you!
When you consider your unique abilities as an artist, do you factor in the emotional element? How do you bring forth your unique knowledge of your subject through your artwork? Nicolas is convinced that the primary advantage artists have is the unique way they know their subject, especially when they know the subject intimately. Don’t let yourself fall for the trap of creating something that anyone could make. Let your unique perspective shine through! What can you learn from Nicolas’ perspective? How do you view your subject matter in a way that no other artist can?
Contextualizing the price for your artwork.
What is your artwork worth? That can be a stressful question to answer for many artists. How have you set your prices over your career? Do you hope to sell one piece for a large sum or do you want to sell multiple pieces for a more modest amount? Nicolas has had the challenge of contextualizing the prices of his artwork as he made the move from the New York market to Bogotá, Colombia. At the end of the day, it’s Nicolas’ goal to reach as many people as he can with his art, he less focused on that big sale, now more than ever.
Outline of This Episode
- [0:55] I introduce my guest, Nicolas Uribe.
- [2:40] Nicolas opens up about what led him to become an artist.
- [15:00] Why did Nicolas move back to Colombia?
- [18:00] Nicolas talks about struggling to find his voice and his own technical process.
- [23:00] Discovering the purpose behind the art.
- [31:20] How does Nicolas choose his subject matter?
- [36:20] Falling for the surface quality of images.
- [40:00] Why it’s important to paint what is unique or valuable to you.
- [47:00] Does your geographical location really matter as an artist?
- [53:30] Contextualizing the price for selling artwork.
- [56:45] Start small and stay humble!
Other artists mentioned on this episode
- Frank Frazetta
- Max Ginsburg
- Wayne Thiebaud
- Richard Schmid
- Gary Fifer
- Alex Kanevsky
- Will Cotton
- Jasper Johns
- Jeremy Lipking
- Lucian Freud
Resources Mentioned on this episode
- Check out Nicolas’ website
- Connect with Nicolas on Instagram
- Take a look at his Youtube Channel – Our Painted Lives