CBT: How did you get started painting?
LS: When I was at college for graphic arts in Wisconsin, where I’m from, I took art classes. I did graphic design for 18 years between Colorado and Cayman. I was here in the ‘90s doing graphic design, but then I left for quite a while. I started painting when I came back — initially at the Open Canvas nights at KARoo. One night at KARoo, I was painting just the sky and the water and someone was interested. It just took off from there. I joined the Visual Arts Society and looked into everything you have to do to run a business. That’s how this started about four and a half years ago.
CBT: What do you like painting most?
LS: I paint mostly seascapes — I never get tired of painting the sea. I paint sunset seascapes, too. People will ask me, “Don’t you get tired of sunsets?” I’m like, “No, not at all.”
CBT: How long does it take you to paint a large canvas?
LS: I never really sit down and finish one from beginning to end. I’ll work on it and then I’ll walk away. I’ll work on it again, and walk away again. I just finished a commission that took me about three weeks of time. Not eight hours a day though. I’d work on it, look at it, walk away from it, look at it again and then come back and work on it some more. I have five different paintings started right now in various phases of completion.
CBT: Has your painting evolved since you started?
LS: Absolutely. I remember the first [email protected]’s I took part in and if I compare some of the paintings to what I’m doing now, I’m more tuned into perspective and contrast and things like that. The colour palette is still similar, but I’m pushing it more. As I’ve seen myself grow, I just want to keep within myself and see what I can do.
CBT: Cayman is a small market and there are a lot of artists. Can you earn a living just painting?
LS: I don’t work otherwise; this is my gig. There are a lot of artists here and there’s more and more coming out. The market can be small, but you’ve got the influx of tourism and that changes all the time, so that really does help. I actually have a really nice mixture of locals and tourists who buy my paintings. I have tourists who come back each year and buy paintings.