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What has your journey as an artist been like? Have you benefited from rich and vibrant relationships with fellow artists? Or have you struggled to find your tribe of peers who you can collaborate and travel the journey with? My guest, Karen Offutt was kind enough to open up in our conversation about the impact that her fellow artists have had on her, struggles she’s endured along the way, how she’s navigated relationships with galleries, how parenthood has impacted her art career, and much more! I can’t wait for you to hear from Karen’s dynamic perspective!
Finding your tribe and learning from fellow artists.
Can you think back to that moment when you realized that you found your tribe? What was it like once you felt like you belonged among your fellow artists? My guest, Karen Offutt described for me the moment when she finally found a community of fellow artists and experienced a challenging and enriching environment. Before she found a community to “Belong” to, she struggled with expanding her skills and never really felt sure in her journey as an artist. Once she found her tribe, everything changed for Karen. Through the highs and lows that many artists struggle with, Karen is thankful for her fellow artists who have been there with her, every step of the way. What can you learn from Karen’s story?
Early challenges with galleries and finding the “Right one.”
What has been your experience connecting with and featuring your artwork in galleries? If you are anything like most artist’s I’ve spoken with, you’ve had your fair share of challenges and successes. Figurative artist, Karen Offutt experienced some difficulties early on as she tried to navigate her way through interacting with galleries that wanted to feature her paintings. She looks back at those early opportunities with gratitude due to the positive experiences she had before some of the more negative ones that came along. A big takeaway from Karen’s story and a maxim that I often repeat when it comes to good galleries is to cherish them and treat them like gold because they can be hard to come by!
Navigating the ups and downs of parenthood and life as an artist.
Trying to figure out life and balancing your art career and parenthood can be extremely difficult. I’ve had the privilege to speak with many artists, both fathers and mothers who have told their story and how challenging this balancing act can be. I believe there are some really helpful lessons to be learned by taking the time to hear from our fellow artists who navigate this path with grace and endurance. Karen Offutt took the time to describe her journey and unique challenges that she’s faced along the way as a parent. I hope you feel as inspired as I was by the tenacity and passion that Karen exudes for both her family and her artwork.
For the love of figure painting.
What do you love the most about the type of artwork you create? Is it the landscapes that draw you in and make your imagination come to life? Or maybe it’s the abstract colors and shapes that spark your creative pursuits. For Karen Offutt, it’s the idea of figures coming out of her paintings and the various ways she is able to play with different images that excites and animates her as she approaches her canvas. Karen was kind enough to describe her process and her deep love and passion for figurative artwork in our conversation. I know artists like you will get a lot of enjoyment out of the way she talks about her process and her creative journey. Make sure to check out images of Karen’s artwork located at the end of this post!
Outline of This Episode
- [0:50] I introduce my guest, Karen Offutt.
- [3:00] How Karen got started as an artist.
- [8:30] When did Karen get the instruction that she needed?
- [15:00] Karen talks about how she learned to loosen up with her painting.
- [17:00] How did Karen start to get her work in galleries?
- [21:00] Challenges Karen faced working with different galleries.
- [23:30] Karen talks about her children and how parenthood has impacted her career.
- [36:00] What is Karen’s process? How does she spend her studio time?
- [40:00] How does Karen choose her models?
- [43:00] What is it that makes Karen so drawn to figurative painting?
- [45:00] Karen’s pride in her work.
- [47:30] The goal to put more time in the studio.
Other artists mentioned on this episode
Resources Mentioned on this episode
- Abend Gallery
- Jack Meier Gallery
- Principle Gallery in Charleston South Carolina
- Group Show Refigured: Radical Realism
- Austin Fine Art Classes