by: Shannon Meis (Brouk)
The creation of “Daisy” was inspired by the flower itself and how hair is associated with feminine beauty. In making this composition, I wanted those two elements alone to be the focus, with the rest of the composition being secondary in attention. That’s why I chose to have her head turned to the side and her eyes looking down, so there’s not an obvious beautiful face rendered to symbolize beauty, but is represented through her long, wavy hair.
From a materials point-of-view, the paper I chose for this piece was green, red’s complimentary color. This makes her fiery-red hair stand out even more, creating the high level of contrast I had intended in my initial sketches. In addition, I chose to keep her attire simple to ensure that her hair remained the focal point of the piece. I chose to use flat black acrylic ink and clothe her with a basic long-sleeve shirt. The rich, dark black ink adds another layer of contrast to the bright yellows, oranges, and reds in her hair.
That being said, the stylistic approach to this piece was not to realistically render the entire portrait, but to capture the essence of the concept of beauty itself through high attention to detail in her hair. Notice too how the daisies cascading down her hair are all rendered flat. They aren’t bent or shaped organically in her hair; they’re purposefully two-dimensional, scattered along her curls as a complement and compositional break to her busy, long, wavy red hair.
I submitted "Daisy" to the State of the Arts (along with two other portraits of mine, "Monarch" and "Glowing Orchids") in the hopes of my work being hung beside other amazing artists within the Kansas City metro area. Each year, the curated works for this show are phenomenal, and I am honored to have had one of my portraits selected to be hung beside such rich local talent!
In each of my portraits, I hope that my attention to detail draws people in to take a closer look, and that they're able to draw a connection with my subject to someone in their life. There's nothing more satisfying to me than when someone views my work and says "hey, this looks like __!" Building a connection with the viewer is just as satisfying for me as the actual drawing process - both bring me so much joy!
I've been doodling and drawing for as long as I can remember, and I've been fascinated with portraiture since I was 16. I can't remember a time in my life when I didn't have a sketchbook in my backpack (as a student) or in my purse (as an adult).
Following my formal education and time at SCAD (my alma mater, the Savannah College of Art and Design in Savannah, Georgia), I began to hone in on the concept of beauty in my portrait work, specifically focusing on the concept of feminine beauty in Western culture. Luckily, I live in a country that is full of diversity, and I use a lot of the women I know and are inspired by to draw inspiration for each of my portraits. *Fun fact; the concept of my piece “Daisy” actually originated from my sister, a person I love and admire deeply, and who also has long, fiery red hair.
The first colored pencil portrait I completed was a self portrait created 12 years ago while I was a sophomore in high school, and ever since then, I’ve never grown tired of drawing portraits and don’t intend on quitting any time soon. :) There are far too many amazing, inspiring, beautiful women in this world to grow tired of capturing them!
by: Nancy Kalikow Maxwell
If you want to see an array of engaging, attractive artwork during this coming year, you need look no further than the City of Prairie Village. The Prairie Village Arts Council has just announced their ambitious line-up of art shows for next year that include everything from impressionistic landscapes to woven wall-hangings to stunning portraits. For the first time this year many exhibits will be available simultaneously at two locations: the R.G. Endres Gallery at the Prairie Village City Hall and the Meadowbrook Park Clubhouse Gallery at 9100 Nall Ave. The Endres location will continue to serve as the site for opening receptions for the shows, but these evening events have been changed to Wednesdays instead of Fridays. (See below for all show and reception dates and locations.)
The Arts Council will continue to sponsor its two popular juried competitions, the Art of Photography contest held in May and State of the Arts in September. And several new artists will be featured this year, including Susan Richards, who produces weavings with repurposed materials and Shannon Brouk, known for her stunning colorful portraits. Artist Shannon Trevethan, who has served as a juror for the State of the Arts competition, will be displaying her own artwork.
Four of the shows coming this year were originally scheduled for 2020, but were postponed due to the pandemic. These re-scheduled artists include Gloria Gale, Donna Yeager, Debra Payne, and Donna Paul, many of whom produce portraits and impressionistic landscapes with pastels and oils.
Along with sponsoring these art exhibits, the Prairie Village Arts Council will also be holding another Prairie Village Art Walk sometime during the summer. This popular event allows residents to visit selected sculptures throughout the city where the sculptors have provided recorded artist statements available on the Otocast phone app.
The Arts Council will also be sponsoring or participating in the Shooting Stars Gala that recognizes Johnson County high school art students, the Prairie Village Art Show held in June, Villagefest in July, and Jazzfest in September. And to think that all of this will be available in or around the City of Prairie Village.
Prairie Village Arts Council
Nye, meanwhile, has a particularly keen eye for the "fish out of water" photograph: that style of image that makes you realize something is out of place in the most whimsical of ways. Her Trick or Treat With Elvis is a perfect example, and puts me in the mind of early Pop Art that asked us to encounter everyday items or rituals -- in this case, trick or treating -- and see some element of them that was just a bit off.
Charpentier's work is immediately striking, and it is the craftsmanship of the works that truly shines. Glass work has perhaps, post-Chihuly, come to seem excessively floral or decorative: the sort of item everyone's grandmother places on a tall shelf to gather dust and refract the occasional beam. But Charpentier's work gave me one reaction: what?!? As in: how on earth did he do that? Take The Descent, whose roller coaster form seems to defy both gravity and expectations about what glass work can be.
His Celestial Shift, with its astronomical motif and almost Escherian lines and orbits, caused me to linger in place more than any other work in the show.
Meanwhile, Archaic looks like a delightful combination of a Pixar film villain and a tropical insect, and I found myself circling the glass display case in bafflement as to how he had constructed it.
All told, the three artists whose work is showing through January 6 excel in a unifying way: by making us sit up a bit straighter, wondering how you had missed what they are making so very clear right now. It's a tough balancing act for an artist, placing the mundane in an entirely new context and framework, and all three handle it skillfully. Please visit this excellent collection soon!
Through January 8, 2023
R.G. Endres Gallery
Meadowbrook Park Clubhouse