My name is Laura Curtin and I am a wildlife artist from Southern California. Working predominately in oils I create paintings to make people smile. Every painting is a place I would like to be. Although the habitat is true to the subject the animals place in the painting is from my imagination.
I paint because I can and I love it. I started painting because I knew I could. I feel a rush of adrenaline when my work is going well and unsure I can keep it up. I love being able to disappear into my work. I can’t believe I can paint sometimes. I am primarily self taught when it comes to painting animals. I do belong to a teaching art gallery in Huntington Beach Ca where my artist friends help me by critiquing my work and offering their solutions to dilemmas I face with color and space.
My favorite tool is my Chinese hair brush because it works so well when I paint fur. I love oil paint, it’s smooth and colorful and smells good. If I don’t like the way something looks I can paint over it. I love being surprised by my success. I know it turned out well when I look at and I don’t want to fix something. I tend to paint families and intricate backgrounds. I took everything I was taught in workshops and seminars, kept what worked for me and then tightened up (more detailed) my style. My favorite color is Thalo green and ultramarine blue with a dash of white. I love the way it glows in a sky, I love the way it reminds me of an island, it’s a happy color. It looks like turquoise.
I begin a piece by designing it in my head before I put it on canvas. I find reference materials to fit the image I have in my mind. My paintings rarely come out like I originally picture them. They always seem to change direction. I know a piece is done when I am driving myself crazy with the smallest details. I have to stop and say this is done. Leave it alone, no more shadows and highlights on little bits of gravel. When my work is going well I am filled with a sense of wonder and thankfulness that I was given a gift.
I am actively pursuing an art career. I want the world see all the wonderful places I create on canvas.