The Problem Solving Stage in Art | September Artist of the Month

Meet Artist Drew Price

The September Artist of the Month, Drew Price, loves problem solving. After placing in our student competition in the portrait category, he tried his hand at the Annual Art Competition. That’s where we saw his hauntingly unique painting Battle of the Bee and the Fly.

Read on for an inside look into how Price works with his problems instead of against them.

 

Problem Solving | Oil Painting | Portrait | Drew Price | Artists Network

Battle of the Bee and the Fly (oil on gesso board, 36×48) by Drew Price

From Doodling to Graduating

I didn’t develop a serious interest in art until later in life. One day I picked up a pen, started doodling and realized how much I had always enjoyed creating and making images.

This random moment drove me to pursue art more seriously. So I enrolled in the Academy of Art University in San Francisco and graduated with my BFA in the fall of 2015.

 

Problem Solving | Oil Painting | Portrait | Drew Price | Artists Network

Wasp and the Wheelbarrow (oil on gesso board, 36×36) by Drew Price

Giving Face to Meaning

My inspiration for Battle of the Bee and the Fly was how meaning is derived. I started this painting devoid of any preconceived ideas of what the painting was going to look like or what the subject matter and meaning would be.

Rather than consciously trying to come up with what to paint, I allowed the imagery to surface through a stream-of-consciousness type process. It was really exciting to work this way, and each stage presented me with new sets of problems to be solved. This made it easy to stay engaged the entire time.

 

Problem Solving | Oil Painting | Portrait | Drew Price | Artists Network

Here and There (oil on gesso board, 48×36) by Drew Price

Conversations and Problem Solving

The “study stages” of a painting, where the majority of problem solving takes place, is my favorite part of the process.

I allowed the exploration and problem solving to unfold directly on the canvas as part of the final painting. This way of working felt alive and like a conversation, rather than just a dictation of ideas.

 

Problem Solving | Oil Painting | Portrait | Drew Price | Artists Network

Over the Hill and Close to Home (oil on gesso board, 36×36) by Drew Price

Work Hard As Hell

Every successful artist I’ve met has a different perspective on things. But the common thread among them all was that the key to success boiled down to working hard as hell, developing thick skin and remaining tenacious. This is the best advice I have received, and the best that I can give.

 

Problem Solving | Oil Painting | Portrait | Drew Price | Artists Network

Artist Drew Price

 


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