Sunday, June 01, 2008

May Artist Wrap-Up, May Artist: Nicole Caulfield

Grrrr. I think the universe was intrinsically against me finishing up my May Artist series, because my internet was knocked down by thunderstorms every evening that I was home, making it totally impossible to blog this week. So I'm going to take the hint and finish up with the last artist I had earmarked before my internet went wonky: Nicole Caulfield.

Regular readers of this blog will recognize her name, because she's one of my close artist chums -- we e-mail daily. But even though we're friends, that's not why she's on the blog today. She's on the blog today because I admire her work hugely and have for a long time.

Like me, she's a colored pencil artist that works on board -- she's the artist who introduced me to pastelbord -- and she's been a huge influence on my work.

Now, without further ado, the reasons I like her work:

  • Absolutely jaw dropping texture. Look at the folds in the cloth, the crinkles in the paper. More than just photorealism, I believe in the weight of the fabric and the snap of the paper.
  • Coherent palette and style. I know instinctively when I look at one of these pieces that they are a Nicole Caulfield: everything screams Nicole from the color choices, the subject matter, the cropping, and the grain of the pencil -- everything is very uniquely Nicole.
  • Those long weird crops. Oooh, I love them. Let me count the ways. Composition get more difficult the further away you move from a traditional rectangle format, but Nicole deftly leads the viewer's eye through the piece through careful angles and color choices.
  • Deliberate. Nicole's pieces have a sort of studied intelligence to them, and I have a feeling that's because she composes and takes all of her own reference photos herself. I've seen the process she goes through . . . every item in a shot has a reason to be there.
  • Sense of light. Nicole has a great grip on dark values, so she gets a great effect of light. Again, just . . . thoughtful.
Nicole is definitely the colored pencil artist I look up to the most and I think she sets a pretty fearsome standard.

I hope all of you guys liked the May Artist project - I have a new project for June that I'll post about tomorrow.


Casey Klahn said...

Good run down on what you love in Nicole's art.

She certainly has artistic courage in many ways!

Every time I think I know what she's doing, she comes up with something else that blows me away!

Jo Castillo said...

Nicole is a super artist. She is also very sharing in her ideas and instruction. One of the best!

Thanks for mentioning her.

Jenna said...

I am also glad to see you featured Nicole in your blog. She is one of my favorites, and I am happy that I got to watch her (and you as well) grow on WC. I'm still growing. I can only hope to be as great as the two of you one day. :)

Laura Zarrin said...

I love Nicole's work too and follow her blog. Glad you featured her, she is an inspiration.

Reflections From Life Art Blog said...

I, too, admire Nicole as an artist very much! She inspires me constantly and I hold up her work as the standard to reach in still life. Thanks for featuring her and her work!

Barbara Pask said...

I agree with you about Nicole's art. Every time I check her out I can't believe how outstanding her art is. She must be proud knowing she has helped in any way to make you the artist you are. Barb