June 2014 Artist of the Month - romanceworks
June 1, 2014 12:08 am
Each month the Renderosity
community votes on the Renderosity Artist
Of The Month [AOM] ... June's AOM
We congratulate Carol Cavalaris [romanceworks] for an outstanding collection of works in the Mixed Medium Gallery!
Tell us a bit about yourself. Who is 'romanceworks'?
First, I’d like to say it is an honor and a great thrill to win Artist Of The Month. I’d like to thank the staff and moderators at Renderosity for nominating me, and for all those who voted for me. I’ve met some very talented artists and made some great friends since becoming a member back in 2003. So, I thank everyone for their support, their friendship, as well as their contributions to this wonderful artist community.
Romanceworks started out as a collaborative team of myself, Carol Cavalaris, and my husband, L.J Heart. He was a whiz in Poser and the technical aspects of digital art, and I was more skilled at painting and postwork. So, we combined our talents and created a lot of artwork together, as well as some 3D products. Sadly, our collaboration and 30 year love affair ended when LJ suddenly died of a heart attack in June, 2006. I never imagined continuing on without him, but somehow I did.
I had to kind of re-invent my art, changing my style, learning and developing new mixed media techniques. Amazing photographers like Ilona Krijgsman, Danny O’Byrne, and Kimarie Chartier generously shared their photos with me, giving me the inspiration and support I needed to keep going and to keep creating. I focused on the beauty and power of animals and nature, pouring my feelings into the work to help myself grieve and to heal. After working 24/7 for 3 years, I had amassed such a huge portfolio of art, that I decided to contact an agent, and he signed me to a contract and my art is now licensed and selling on products worldwide. I am also a collectible artist with The Bradford Exchange, and also sell prints on-line and exhibit in a few Colorado galleries. I never imagined having a whole new career after losing my beloved soul mate, but that is what happened and it has been a very welcome and wonderful blessing.
How long now have you been creating digital art?
I’ve been an artist my entire life, working in many different mediums, from painting to stained glass to ceramics. I have a degree in art, but my background is in traditional oils and acrylics. I began playing with digital art when my husband and I joined Renderosity in 2003, and that was eleven years ago. I absolutely love digital art and that is the only type of art I now create. I have found it to be incredibly challenging, as well as stimulating, and it’s great to work in a medium that allows easy revisions, as well as being able to produce art in any size, from tiny to huge.
What are you currently working on?
I have over a hundred mixed media paintings in various stages of development and completion, with new ideas happening constantly. I’m currently working on a collection called ‘Brigitte’s Roses.’ This was inspired by a delightful and very spiritual woman named Brigitte who has this amazing garden in France where she grows over 800 varieties of roses. The roses have a very special meaning in her life and I wanted to pay tribute to the love and passion she has for her garden, so I decided to create a collection featuring only Brigitte’s roses.
Who, or what, inspires you?
Nature, animals, and flowers, with their amazing beauty and ability to heal our bodies, hearts, and spirits, all inspire me. I see the uniqueness in every living being as a momentary gift to be treasured. This need to capture the life force, to enhance and celebrate it, and even give it life long after it has faded, brings inspiration and meaning to my work. I am also very inspired by other artists, their artwork, photography, words, music, dance, and concepts. And one of my greatest inspirations – love and all things romantic. Why else would I be called romanceworks? :o)
What software is currently in your toolset?
Photoshop CS6 and Poser, and a Wacom tablet. I have programs like Vue, Art Rage, and many others, but no time to really learn them, as I’d rather spend my time making art. It’s always a delicate balance between learning new programs and creating.
What do you enjoy most about creating art in the mixed medium category?
Sometimes I paint everything in Photoshop, but I really enjoy combining reality and fantasy, mixing photos and/or 3D products with painting. The possibilities are limitless and it’s a fun and exciting medium. I also like being able to print my art in any size, and often add acrylic accents and a textured gel coating to prints I exhibit in galleries.
What do you think your best piece of work is and why?
That’s an interesting question, because I put all my energy and focus into what I am currently creating, and hope it will be my best work. The art seems to have a mind and will of its own and sometimes exceeds my vision and sometimes doesn’t even come close. And sometimes what I think is my best work goes unnoticed in the world. It is always an act of love to create art and an act of faith and courage to share your creation. So, I would say my best work is the best I can do at this moment.
Do you have any tips you would be willing to share on any of the software you use? Any tips on digital painting?
I work in Photoshop and one of the most useful techniques I learned was layering. Being able to paint subtle colors from the back layer to the front layer, incorporating these colors and textures into the work, harmonizes everything. For example, if I’m working on a lion, I will select or paint a background that works well with the colors of the lion, and then I will place that background behind the lion layer, and then paint those background colors into the lion by bringing them through. This brings a lot of unique colors into the final work. I also do this with light and shadows, as well as painting things in and out of the finished work.
Study and master layering and it will tremendously enhance and improve your art. I would say no matter what software you use, focus your art on what you love and are passionate about. This will reflect in everything you create. And make you want to do more. And it is the doing and time you put in that makes your art better. I always ask myself what does the art I’m creating mean to me … and then I ask myself what will the viewer get out of the art? And, of course, enjoy the process. Do the best you can, give it everything you have, and then let it go out into the world and have a life of its own, and then make more art.
We invite you to have a further look at romanceworks' Renderosity Gallery!
Be sure to visit:
- romanceworks' Renderosity homepage
- romanceworks' Renderosity Gallery
- Renderosity Mixed Medium Gallery
Artist of the Month is highlighting a talented Renderosity artist that has been nominated by mods and admins, and voted by the community. Recognition is given to this member for their collection of works for that year.
Since we only select one AOM per month, it is not about their works for that particular month. Instead, it is about highlighting a talented artist's works for that year, and they are recognized during that month.
To learn more about Renderosity's Artist Of The Month [AOM] award, and to view our past AOM's, please visit the AOM page.
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Congratulations, Carol! You put so much passion, feeling and depth into your work, along with, of course, your years of technical skill and experience. I'm thrilled you won this again. Thanks for continuing to do your consummate work day after day, and letting us share it with you. I wish you a splendid and creative summer! Mark
Awesome!! So deserved...you're art is so inspiring and beautiful...it takes me somewhere special every time I look at it. Thank you for sharing what you put into it...every piece is a part of you and I love being able to share that love and passion with you! It is so apparent to me in your work...so meticulous and beautiful...a labor of love to be sure! Congratulations to you! Thousands of artists out there...you are obviously doing something right!! Love you!!