Name: Carly Allen-Martin
Do you have a formal art education or are you a self taught artist: I received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting from Texas Christian University in 2007, and I completed a painting residency at The Vermont Studio Center in the summer of 2011.
What is the style of your pieces: Contemporary abstracts with bright contrasts in color.
What is the medium in which you work: I always work with oils and mostly on canvas, although recently I have been painting on birch wood panels. Sometimes I include charcoal and texture building mediums into my work.
What started you on your path as an artist: I have always loved to paint and draw. Growing up I always had a drawing table and a creating space in our home. My parents made an effort to always keep me involved in studio classes and stocked up on art supplies. It wasn't until college when one of my professors spent the summer mentoring me as a painter that I really saw my potential as an abstract painter.
What is one of the most important things that art has brought to your life: I recently read an interview of an artist in which she said "If I am not painting, I am not breathing." Metaphorically, creating artwork has brought breath & oxygen to my life. If I am not painting, I feel an ache like I am missing my purpose or missing the mark. Art brings a solid foundation to my way of being.
Do you have art showings, and if so what are they typically like: Yes I frequently show in the DFW metroplex. A fellow artist and I recently had a show at DIVE in Dallas and it was a huge success!
Do you have a certain set of clothes you make art in: I have a drawer full of clothes that I have managed to cover in oil paint over the years & a pair of ugg boots that are caked in paint. I try to pull from that drawer any time I am going in the studio. My painting process is a very messy one!
What has been the most frustrating part of being an artist? Developing an identity of the kind of artist I want to be has been the biggest learning curve for me. Not in terms of what kind of work I want to create, but in defining who I want as my clientele and what my goals are as an artist. It is important to me to create as much work as possible, and to keep my price range at a point where my clients know they are purchasing a high quality oil painting at a price that is not out of reach. I feel I am doing my job when clients are able to invest in my work and allow it the opportunity to enrich their spaces and their lives.
What is your favorite sandwich of all time: B.L.T.
Has this year brought about any changes in your work, and if so what are they: I recently had a carpenter construct birch wood panels which have brought a new dimension to my work and have allowed me to incorporate drawing back into my painting. I am excited to see how my textures and depth will change through working on panel.
Who is your favorite artist alive or dead: Richard Diebenkorn.
What is the most moving piece of artwork that you have seen in person: A single piece of art work is hard to identify. Being able to experience the Hakone Open-Air Museum in Japan was by far my most influential art experience. It is truly a phenomenal place and, while there is not a single piece of art work that inspired me, being able to interact with art and nature on that level absolutely influenced my work and perspective.
Do you have any animals, and what do they think of your work: I have one golden retriever, Dakota. He spends a lot of time in my studio and frequently has oil paint caked in his paws and in his coat. I think he is a fan!
Do you have any upcoming exhibitions you would like to share with us: Yes! I am having a show titled "Panels & Prints" with Megan Adams & Lynn Blanchard opening December 1st at the Fort Worth Community Art Center. You can find more information online at: http://fwcac.com/?exhibitions/future_exhibition