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Christine Wasankari

Artist's Interview

How long have you been creating?
Semi-professionally since 1993 - Fully Professional since 1998. Before that, like just about every other artist out there, I was coloring up a storm for as long as I can remember. All books, all walls...that sort of thing. Being that my father was in the military and we moved every 18 months, you can imagine how patient my mother was, I'm still walking this planet. Military inspections are intense and little kid drawings all over the walls just don't pass the muster.
What is your medium of choice?
Acrylic mixed media. Acrylic definitely because it dries faster. I live in a temperate rain forest here in Washington state and 200+ inches of rain a year makes anything but acrylic a son of a gun to dry between layers. And I have many layers to build. I'm a rather impatient painter and hate waiting too long for layers to dry.
What are your motivations for creating?
My natural surroundings. I'm deeply rooted to my surroundings and really have to find ways to express what I see. If I don't, I feel like I'd go bananas. So whether I'm painting a representational abstract, southwest landscape or my series of whimsical florals it's all about expression for me. I have a need to express what I see and how it makes me feel and to share these captured emotions with others.
What other artists and movements inform your work?
Dr Suess, Wanda Gaag (of the early Brother's Grimm) and Chuck Jones believe it or not. All "illustrators" but fantastic artist's in their own right. I love the sensuous line they imparted in their work. They were my earliest and heaviest influences. Once I went to art school I studied the masters and various disciplines so include Picasso and Georgia O'Keefe into the mix as well as today's contemporary southwest and western artists.
What do you find stimulating right now? How does this influence your creative process?
The landscape in which I live. Temperate rainforest's, mountains and the ocean. An amazing mix of site and sound. I feel like I'm living in a postcard. It is an extreme difference from the high desert mountains that I come from. The differences between Colorado and Western Washington have had a profound influence on my expressions as an artist.
Read anything good lately?
I read everything I can get my hands on. From science magazines to horror stories, I love it all. I'm currently reading short stories that were published in the now defunct Midnight Graffiti magazine. This is where Stephen King got his start and he's one of my favorites.
What are some of your artistic goals for the future?
Since 2001 I've had a great run with selling my art on the Internet. Beneficial because I live in a very rural area. But the bottom has dropped out and the market is now seems saturated. So I'm getting back into the traditional methods of peddling my art. Galleries, festivals, and interior design houses. Difficult for me being so far from Seattle, but worth it to get my art back out there.
What would you like your fellow EBSQ artists and collectors to know about you and or your work?
That I'm passionate about what I do and I take it very serious. I follow my own sense of where I need to go rather than follow the passing fancy of what people think is hot right now. I need to stay true to myself and keep that integrity.

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