Trekell Featured Artist - Holly Hartwell

Trekell Featured Artist - Holly Hartwell

Trekell Featured Artist - Holly Hartwell

Holly studied Fine Art when she was 20 at a technical college in Australia, majoring in painting, from 1999-2001. She's had numerous solo exhibitions and been involved in many fund raising shows for local farmers and the community. Holly took a 10 year hiatus from painting to raise her 2 children and obtain a teaching degree.

Holly now paints full-time and has a solo exhibition coming up in February in her home town of Goulburn, Australia. Her work is a mix of realism with some surreal elements popping up now and again. Surrealism was Holly' s first love and she was heavily influenced by Dali when she was younger. In the last 2 years the challenge to represent something realistically has really kicked into high gear and Holly has dabbled in acrylic and oils to try to achieve this.

She's found it doesn't matter what media she uses, she can work something in any medium until it 'pops'. Holly began dabbling in art shows and most recently received a 'highly commended' for a piece in the Wyong Art Prize and was a finalist in the Bluethumb Art Prize located in Australia. 

What’s your preferred medium to paint and why?
I'm torn! I love the fast drying time of acrylics and the satisfaction of building depth with layers...but oil paint is just so juicy! I can't decide, I just won't!

What do you do, to get out of an artist block? 
Walk, draw, paint, repeat.

At what age/what turning point led you to be an artist? Why? 
At the age of 18 I was enrolled in university to do graphics design but my marks out of high school didn't cut it, so I travelled instead. I kept drawing and painting and ended up going to technical college instead. In the last year of college I had to decide my major, printmaking or painting, it was a tough choice but I love painting. I did take time off from painting while raising my children but I've always been encouraged and supported by friends and family to keep going. The universe just keeps pointing me in that direction.

What do you listen to when you are painting/creating artwork? Why? 
Tool, Radiohead, Alice in Chains, any 80's rock, it just gets my blood pumping and motivates me to paint. I've tried listening to classical but I end up putting my paintbrush through the canvas...which isn't the effect it's supposed to have I'm sure!

Do you feel it’s necessary to finish your painting prior to beginning another? Why? 
I can start another painting while I'm waiting for final layers to dry before varnishing, but not before. I need to focus just on that painting, I've tried to paint two paintings at once and I got bored of both of them, they lost their potency or something. I can usually work for a solid block before the entire painting is wet with oil and I have to sit it aside to dry, in realism there's always something to adjust or add to. 

When you receive unsolicited critiques or comments, how do you feel/how do you react? 
So far all the comments I have received have been positive. I'm open to critiques as long as they are constructive and focus on the work. I'm very critical of my own art as my goal is always to reach a high level of realism and I don't take a painting off the easel until it looks so real you could pick it up.

Holly's Favorite Trekell Products:
My favourite Trekell products hands down are the Golden Taklon 2000 brushes, specifically the rounds. These brushes have held their shape for over 12 months now which is fantastic value for money. I do take care of my brushes and clean/condition after every use, but Trekells brushes have outlasted any other brand I have tried.

Where to find Holly: Instagram, Website

If you'd like a chance to be one of our featured artists, click here!

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