Artist Spotlight: James Erickson

The Artist Spotlight is back! This time I was lucky enough to check in with the wonderful James Erickson, an oil painter in Maryland and a fellow UVA alumni. I love how effortless and calming his paintings feel--and I think you'll feel the same. Screen Shot 2015-10-03 at 3.15.07 PM

The Spoonful: Describe your style in 5 words:

James: I do my best work when I stop worrying about painting with a certain style. My paintings are representational in the sense that they depict real places and people that I encounter. Usually I start out fast, loose and abstract then bring about more order as the work progresses.

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The Spoonful: Art background?

James: I fell in love with drawing and painting as a child. I studied painting at The University of Virginia and continued at The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) for an MFA.

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The Spoonful: Whose work do you most admire?

James: John Singer Sargent, Joaquin Sorolla, Winslow Homer...

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The Spoonful: Where do you find your inspiration?

James: Sometimes I see a person or a place that I am inspired to paint but more often it is the process of painting itself that I find inspiring. It is very rewarding to discover beauty in an unlikely subject.

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The Spoonful: Ideal workspace consists of...

James: ...working in natural light with the landscape and/or a model.  It is exciting to work with the changing conditions.

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The Spoonful: Greatest piece of advice on being an artists (creating, surviving, anything) that you've received? That you can give?

James: Stick to what you know. Make art from your surroundings. Develop a daily discipline for your work.

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The Spoonful: Five things you can't live without?

James: My faith and my family. Sleep and exercise. Books.

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The Spoonful: Where can we find your work?

James: My studio is in Poolesville, MD. I also have paintings hanging at Village Gallery in Culpeper, VA. You can find my work online here, on instagram (@jamesdeanerickson), and on Facebook (jamesericksonart).

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The Spoonful: Anything else we should know?

James: I am a husband and father to three young children. Finley (4 years), Joseph (2 years) and Julia Rose (9 months).

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James also updates his tumblr often--it's well worth following. Do it! Now! Thanks so much for sharing your story, James!

If you'd like to share an artist to spotlight on The Spoonful, let me know!