Saturday, February 5, 2011

Saturday Artisan: Megan Cutler

Meet Megan Cutler, our Saturday Artisan.

Emotion is such an important part of our life. In fact, I personally learned about that recently ... but let's steer away from what happened with me and focus on Megan instead. *smile*

Read on to find out how emotion is used on Megan's beautiful pieces.

Tell us a bit about yourself and what arts/ crafts that you make?
I’m Megan Cutler, an abstract painter out of San Francisco. I’m a quiet little hermit, with messy black hair, over-done mac eyes, an albino bulldog is always at my side. My paintings are acrylic, often with collaged items [normally in the form of paper], incorporating drips, text and bold colors. I graduated from the San Francisco Art Institute, with a major in fine art, and a concentration in painting.

If you can hang on to one of your paintings, which one is it going to be?
hmm, hang onto one painting? That’s tough, most of my paintings are very personal, and emotional, so they all feel like a part of me. I think it would be ‘tire tracks’, it was one of my first pieces that really ‘clicked’ in this raw abstract style. It came after a break-up that left me devastated, and I used the painting as therapy. I think that’s when I realized that the more I invested myself in the painting, the stronger, and more successful it was. I also love how hostile the painting is – most viewers assume the artist is going to be male, and I enjoying throwing out the typical female artist stereotypes.. we can do more than paint pretty flowers. ‘everything is a self portrait, everything is a diary’ chuck Palahniuk.

How do you balance your personal and work life?
Balancing work life and personal life is hard, really hard, and I’m still trying to get the knack of it. I work full time at a specialty veterinary hospital, and while I love my job, it’s stressful and draining. I have my own dog at home as well, so on my days off we hangout at my art studio. He lays on his bed and chews bones while I jump around the studio, trying to get to each canvas at just the right time to get my layers and drips perfected. [I normally have around 5 paintings going at a time] I consume a lot of caffeine, and always have multiple to-do lists going to try to stay on target.

What inspires you?

Everyone always asks where I get the inspiration for my paintings, and I guess its’ because they’re so emotional. But I pull from daily life. There is so much emotion in life, I think a lot of people over-look it, especially if it’s sad. Its like the photographer who can see a photo everywhere, I find beautiful words everywhere. I read a lot, and write down quotes that jump out at me in a journal. I also do a lot of my own writing, and tend to pull the main idea and emotion for paintings straight from this journal.

Tell us a bit more about your charity work: "15% of my pet-related art items are donated to badrap rescue ("
I donate a portion of my pet-related items to badrap which is a bay area pitbull rescue group. They also teach do low cost spay/neuter and vaccines and educate the community about pitbulls. I donate to them because as a dog mom [of a rescued deaf American bulldog/pitbull] and someone working in the veterinary field, animals are my passion. And I have such a huge love for the bully-breeds, because they get such a badrap, and are so loving and loyal. I’ve learned a lot from my dog over the 7 years I’ve had him, and consider him my hero [as well as my best friend].

Any tutorial that you’d like to share, pretty please?
I will share one of my secret tips, although you may not all realize how invaluable this tip is until you try it [or see my work in person]. I paint in acrylics because they’re cheaper, less toxic, and to be honest, I don’t have the patience for oils, however, I do miss that ‘glow’ oil paints have. So, my tip is: Acrylic Medium.

I pile it on! I use it to mix with my acrylics and thin them out for my sheer layers, I apply the medium in between layers to add depth, and then I do at least 2 layers of gloss medium/top coat to the finished painting. The sheen is amazing! It makes the paintings look like oil painting. [however, this does make photographing your work more difficult, as they want to glare].

Stay-tuned for tomorrow's giveaway.

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  1. I can't believe that you have such a stressful veterinary job and still manage to create so much beautiful art. I definitely understand the difficulties in balancing work/life/hobbies. Keep creating though, because you are so talented and I can't wait to see your new work!

  2. I love your descriptive words - "overdone mac eyes".

    What a kind heart you have to give to charity; not many sellers do that!