It all probably started in kindergarten when I liked to experiment with different color combinations. Like I noticed grey and pink or red and tan looked really good together. Lots of people ask me how long I have been painting. Sometimes I say about "10 or 12 years, as a serious artist." Sometimes I say "all my life-- on and off."
Being an artist is hard to define. People who are good at putting on make-up are nowadays are called artists. Who am I to argue?
But back to my personal history.
I am starting this blog as an addition to my web site and thought it would be a good time to introduce myself officially, as an Artist, with a capital A, to my friends, collectors, other artists, viewers, galleries and anyone else who stumbles onto my web site.
So here goes.
After kindergarten, I have to give my parents a lot of credit for bringing out the artist in me. They noticed that I liked to draw and paint and encouraged my activities. One of my most vivid memories is when I was about 10 years old my parents took me to Greenwich Village in New York City with them. They took me to an art supply store and bought me a real artists box, with oil paints and brushes. This left an indelible memory--and message--they thought of me as an artist. It was quite a vote of confidence for a 10 year old.
In those years I never thought of myself as an artist, in spite of lots of lessons and encouragement from my parents.
And, I hate to admit it, but I dropped the whole endeavor for about 10 years until after college.
When I was first married and had young children, painting became a great hobby which I enjoyed a lot. I took lessons and made many paintings, some of which I am still proud of.
Then life took another big turn: divorce and law school and business career took my time and energy. There were years when I did nothing at all in terms of art. There were years when I managed to fit in a class or two. And sometimes I was able to paint on my own for a few hours on a Sunday afternoon.
I experimented with different mediums--oil, acrylic, watercolors, collage--and continued to try to keep my creative juices flowing. Art was a part time hobby at best.
Then in 1996 I retired from the world of work. With lots of free time for the first time in many years I decided to take up painting seriously.
I began painting a on regular schedule at my home studio. I began going to extended workshops. I joined artist groups. And began to think of myself as an Artist.
I would like to think that over the last dozen years or so my art evolved and developed. Today painting is definitely a part of my identity--when I think of who I am as person--Artist is on that list.
My life as an Artist today? I paint at a studio several days a week. Join discussion groups with other artist. Keep up with the gallery scene, here in Dallas at some wonderful galleries like www.conduitgallery.com/ www.craigheadgreen.com/ and http://www.ilumegallerie.com/ and http://www.kittrellriffkind.com/exhibitions.php. Another favorite is www.marytomas.com/studiogallery/. On my travels to Austin, Santa Fe, Los Angeles, Denver, New York and Paris its always fun to check out the local art scene.
Sometimes I am lucky enough to have a show like the one at www.haleyhenman.com/ Or be part of a group exhibition at the Texas Visual Artists Association, tvaa.org/ . Or get accepted into a competition or magazine like Studio City Magazine, www.studiovisitmagazine.com/
I can truly say being an Artist, with a capital A, is fun and rewarding. It keeps me invigorated.
To contact Esther Ritz to view or purchase her art, visit the contact page and get in touch.