Christine VanCott is an Asheville, NC watercolor painter.
How did you get the idea for 3D name art?
I worked as a television creative services producer for about 12 years. One of my favorite parts of the production process was creating a script storyboard – a page where you drew out your concept one tiny scene at a time. I think of each IpsyDoodle design like a mini-storyboard where each square is a tiny scene, but they all visually work together.
Have you always been an artist?
Not a watercolor artist…I studied classical ballet for about 20 years, where I spent many hours studying line and form. In my job as a television producer, I created many graphics and animations and spent a lot of time thinking about layout, texture and visual interest. I also create scale mixed-media miniatures – another childhood passion. I have degrees in Journalism and French.
When did you start painting?
My grandmother was an oil painter; and my grandfather gifted me my first set of watercolors when I was a small child (many of which I still use!). Like all good children you’d like to offer direction…I rarely used them. However, in college I had the opportunity to paint theater set renderings for one of my classes – and watercolor painting came instantly and naturally. I spent too many hours in an edit bay to have time to paint while working as a professional, but picked it back up several years ago when I started working with a local art cooperative. I’m now inspired to be devoting even more time to painting at my studio in Asheville’s River Arts District Pink Dog Creative.
What do you like most about watercolor?
I like visualizing a scene and letting the characters interact with one another. I think the medium lends itself to a little pre-planning, as unlike oil or acrylic paint, you can’t paint in light areas or go back and paint over something. It’s important for me to think of the light first – and how the whole scene will come together. I’m very structured, and like working in a very small scale – so I also like how the paint itself gives the work texture. Some of this texture I work to control, and some of it comes out beautifully organic and unplanned. In my standalone pieces, I’ll often go back and deliberately spatter ink or paint over the finished work to break a little of the structure and give the work an element of freedom and randomness. The pieces I like the most are the ones that look like watercolor when they’re finished. (They make very sophisticated graphic programs to try to replicate that look!)
What do you like most about name art?
They’re really personal! I love how each reflects the interests or personality of the person receiving it. It’s such a fun creative process – to learn a little about someone and then create a visual piece that unique to the individual, but that everyone can enjoy.
Where do you get ideas for your paintings?
Often from the individual ordering the piece! The requests I’ve received have been some of the best ideas and characters I’ve painted. I’m also a big travel fan, and will often refer to my personal photos and memories for inspiration. Check out my travel blog, PostcardsOnTheFridge.com.