Introducing Sheila Howell

Sheila Howell

What time of day are you most productive?

There is no particularly  “ good” time of the day for me. I usually hit the studio around 9:30- 10:00 and start working as soon as I get there. I work until I need a break or have to be somewhere. I often paint seven days a week. If I have painted all day, I am often too tired to paint in the evening. Some days I am energized after painting and other days I am totally drained.

What would you like people to know about you, your creative process or your work?

I tend to work in an intuitive manner. I rarely know what the finished painting will look like when I start working on it. Many times, I’ll have planned  painting an abstract and ended up with something very realistic or the other way around. I have tried many times to “discipline” myself into working in a more organized manner but, I’ve finally realized that this is the way I paint. Sometimes I feel that I waste a lot of time and paint because without a concrete plan, I often end up repainting large areas but I’ve learned to accept that this who I am as an artist. It’s also a lot of fun to see what takes shape. I often joke that I just paint what the voices tell me to. I don’t hear voices but I am often driven to paint certain things and paint them incredibly large.

Working on an abstract painting takes way more out of me than realistic work. With the abstracts I have to reach very deep inside.

In the next five years you would you like to accomplish.  

I would like to work more in oils. I love the texture, the colours and even the smell. I hope to be able to continue painting full time.

I know what road I want to take and I just want to work as hard as I can. I love life and hope my painting continues to translate this love of life and also all the other emotions which are part of living fully.With my art, my goal is just to make the best art I can.  Shows, sales, fame and fortune are all just window dressing.

What music do you listen to when you are working?

I listen to a lot of Leonard Cohen. “Anthem” has inspired me to pick up a brush many times when I felt really down and doubted myself. I also listen to Glenn Gould, Tony Bennett, Jimi Hendrix, Carole King, Van Morrison, Blue Rodeo, Clinton Charlton various jazz, classical, folk and rock…you know, the usual. Other than Carmen, I’m not crazy about opera. I’m not a big fan of top 40 music in country or in rock .

Favourite colour?

I tend to favour the blue and turquoise shades and I love alizarin crimson. At home I tend to surround myself with a lot of green.

Favourite subject matter?

Making up scenes has a great appeal for me. Landscapes which are full of magic colours and haunted frightened trees. Flowers so large that you can get lost in them. Abstracts that have a rhythm and a language all of their own. I like paintings that make the viewer think. I never strive to make a “nice” painting but I often will create a happy, safe place to rest in for a while.

Web Site:

Magnolia Blossoms

Say good Bye Looking Back Finished

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