Lydia Martin was recently the featured artist in a large collective artists show downtown and it was a pleasure to attend the show, support her and to meet her in person. I am a huge fan of her body of work. In her current line of paintings she is focusing on female figures in situations, it seems, that convey metaphors for her life. As we chatted about her work, she sold two pieces and I was able to confirm, she is a gorgeous woman inside and out. She has creatively used the stories within her pieces to analyze the personalities and passions of her patrons. I also learned and was surprised to know that one of her most striking pieces: sink or swim, was her first ever painting.
There was never a more perfect painting for a KESS inHouse shower curtain. It's clear, she has an innate talent that she has cultivated into a wonderful career. Having Lydia as a Kess artist is a true privilege. Her work is a great friend to some of our other artist pieces. She was recently featured in our aquatic collection. Please take a moment to get a glimpse into what makes Lydia Martin such an astounding artists and feel free to look through her Kess Collection.
KIH: Can you describe your earliest creative memories?
LM: "In my earliest memories, it would be drawing/coloring alongside my mother as she painted with her watercolors. I wanted to be an artist just like her! It graduated into participating in art shows and contests at school or in the community. In my early teen years, I was painting murals on my bedroom walls, drawing on my shoes and clothes, and creating stuff for my friends."
KIH: What is your creative process like?
LM: "It all starts with an experience, a thought, an emotion. Nature inspires a lot of my work. I get flashes of images in my head that seem to represent these ideas and then start sketching. It’s usually super loose and just a way to get the idea from my head to paper. Some sketches never make it to the painting stage and I sometimes decide that it is meant to be only a drawing. T hen I will search for reference images to help me with painting or take the photos myself. If I have enough undisturbed quiet time, I will just pick up a paint brush and get "into the zone"-an inexplicable creative trance (I love listening to music while I do this!)"
KIH: What was your first medium?
LM: "Pencil & watercolors"
KIH: What is your favorite medium?
LM: "Acrylic paint"
KIH: What is your favorite color?
LM: "In love with turquoise blues!"
KIH: Are there certain elements that you find reappear in your work?
LM: "The female figure or face and elements of nature; Melding them together somehow tells the perfect story of my own experiences and emotions."
KIH: Can you tell us about your first show?
LM: "Well, I've been participating in community and school art shows since I was a kid but my first show as a "professional" painter...was at Sanctuary Gallery in the Barrio Logan district of San Diego. I had made my first series of artwork too, called Flirting with Devotion, which was about aspects of life that give us passion and drive and cause us to step out of our comfort zone."
KIH: Where is Your Studio?
LM: "Home. I used to have an "art room" but as my kids grew they needed the space. So, now I will pick any spot in the house but my favorite place is in my backyard-my husband has created a beautiful garden in our small space. It's full of flowers and trees swarming with bees, butterflies, and birds! I love it!"