The first Dan’s Papers cover of 2022 comes to us from East End Arts member Lisa Claisse. Here, she discusses her fine art style, upcoming exhibition and more.
What inspired this week’s cover art, “Red Cardinals in Snow?”
I have a calendar I saved from 1979, painted by artist Nanae Ito. I have always saved pictures that inspire me. It took me a while, but I finally got around to painting something similar.
How was this piece created? Walk us through your process.
First, I made a rough composition with Photoshop. Then, I did a light pencil sketch on the watercolor paper. I used liquid resist to draw the snow covered branches. The rest was done in watercolor.
What makes this artwork such an ideal fit for a Dan’s Papers cover?
Well, it is literally an exact fit — it’s 11 inches by 14 inches. But seriously, cardinals are often seen on Long Island. They are always a beautiful sight.
How would you describe your art style, and how did you develop it?
When I was very young, I loved birds and admired John James Audubon. I thought I wanted to be like him when I grew up, but when I found out he shot the birds that he drew, I had second thoughts. Still, he was an inspiration. I love all animals, science, nature and art. I create something new every day. Even if it is just a doodle or an idea — I’m always creating. I also love experimenting with new techniques and materials. I sometimes dream of a painting that I want to do.
What artistic accomplishment are you most proud of?
I don’t think I’ve gotten there yet. Although I sold my first drawing in junior high, I have only recently been putting more time and effort into getting my art seen by the public.
What do you find most rewarding about being an artist?
Like an alchemist turning lead into gold, an artist can turn a blank space into a beautiful scene. It’s like having a superpower. My other superpower is sleeping.
Where can your work be seen in the coming weeks, both online and up close?
I’m a member of East End Arts and my work can be seen on their website: shopeea.com/claisse. I will have artwork in the East End Arts members’ show titled Dan’s Reimagined. That will be on display at East End Arts’ galleries January 29 through March 4. For more info, go to eastendarts.org.
I am also a member of Guild Hall in East Hampton, BACCA in Babylon and Islip Arts Council.
Would you like to share any closing thoughts?
Even after decades of creating, it seems like I have a never-ending supply of learning and exploring to do. I will never run out of things to create.
To follow Lisa Claisse as she shares more of her beautiful artwork, head to @l.claisse.artist on Instagram.