Winter is quickly approaching, which means colder weather and shorter days. Stumbling upon Mexico-based artist, Dmitry Spiros‘ paintings was just what I needed; his bright, beautiful paintings portray that feeling of long summer days and plenty of sunshine!
When I showed his work to my boss, Linda Wehrli, she was intrigued and encouraged me to reach out to this remarkable artist for a blog interview. So glad he accepted my invitation. We hope this story warms your Fall days! But first, a little background about the painter, courtesy of Saatchi Art.
Dmitry Spiros is a contemporary impressionist artist.
Raised in middle Asia, Dmitry Spiros currently resides in Cancun, Mexico.
He creates bright and inspiring paintings in different genres. All paintings are created with a palette knife, oil and acrylic paint. Raised in Sunny Asia, absorbing a bright palette of colors, the classical school of painting and modern trends of impressionism are a reflection and a bridge in his work forming new forms of synthetic art.
“From the beginning to the end, the whole process of creating paintings takes place in my studio. Manufacturer of stretchers of different sizes, stretch canvas on stretcher frames I also do personally. The themes of my work are observations in everyday life, as well as inspiration in travel”. ~ Dmitry Spiros
Now, without further adieu, I’m pleased to present my interview with Dmitry.
JLS: What is your style of painting referred to? For our art students, would you please describe what this style means or represents?
DS: When I was a child, I was impressed by the realism of Russian artists. Later, I was greatly influenced by the French artists who founded Impressionism. I continue the best traditions of Impressionism today. This style is very close to me.
JLS: Nice! My boss, Linda Wehrli is a longtime fan of Russian landscape painter, Ivan Shishkin. And we both love Impressionism. We can definitely see the influence in your beautiful work. Much of your recent paintings feature city scenes, genre paintings, the sea, and flowers. What is the story or inspiration behind your choice of subject matter? Do you create the paintings off the top of your head or look at personal photographs?
DS: I experiment all the time. Time does not stand still. I love different topics. If you can express something in different topics, you need to do it. As a rule, I create paintings based on spots in photos that I take or other photos and then make sketches for new paintings. In photos, color spots are very important to me. Painting is like a mosaic.
JLS: So true. Good to keep experimenting and keep the creativity flowing! Our students are interested in the latest tools of the trade. May I please inquire, what is your preference for paints and brushes? Do you use oils or acrylics? Do you paint on canvas board, panels, or…? Do you finish with a varnish or leave as is?
DS: I don’t use brushes. My most important tool is a palette knife. I draw pictures with a palette knife on canvas and as a rule are very pasty. The texture of the “brushstroke” is important to me and there should be a lot of paint on the picture. Also, for small formats, I paint with acrylic. This is a very complex technique. There are a lot of details that need to be understood. It is desirable to cover the painting with a protective varnish, but it takes time for the painting to dry. After about one year, you need to apply varnish to the painting.
JLS: Very impressive. Palette knives take a lot of skill. Sounds like a complex process! Are you represented by any art galleries or do you work solo?
JLS: Great to have exposure all over the world. For our students, what do you believe are the pros and cons of gallery representation?
DS: The disadvantage of brick-and-mortar galleries is that not a large number of people pass through them. Online galleries are more developed today. There’s more traffic and the opportunity to be seen. A large number of paintings are being sold through online galleries today and this is an advantage.
JLS: So true. Instagram has been a useful tool for artists today. At what age did you realize you wanted to be a professional artist?
DS: At the age of 20. Before that, I already had different professions.
JLS: Nice. Did anyone try to talk you out of venturing into an art profession? If so, how did you handle it?
DS: No, no one tried to dissuade me from doing art. But no one advised. Becoming an artist is not just a profession. rather, it is a way of life. You have no days off, no vacation. I can work 12 -15 hours a day, sometimes taking small breaks. The creation of paintings is the bestowal of all your inner energy.
DS: I came to Mexico by invitation, and then decided to live a little. But the beauty of the Caribbean Sea and the tropical climate captured me and I realized that I needed more time to express this beauty on canvas. Nature and climate influenced my choice.
JLS: I can imagine the Caribbean sea inspires your creativity. What a lovely place to live. Did you study art in college or are you self-taught? What are the pros and cons of studying at a university vs. self-taught?
DS: I graduated from State Republican College of Arts in Uzbekistan. For 5 years I studied painting. I believe that every artist should start with the basics of painting. When we want to read a book for this we must at least know the alphabet.
JLS: Indeed! Do you teach any workshops via Zoom or in-person?
DS: No, I don’t have time for this.
JLS: With 12-15 hour painting days, I can see why! What is some advice you can give the young artists studying at Pastimes?
DS: If you feel that you have something to say to this world, then, without a doubt, follow your voice. You will often make mistakes, but people learn from mistakes and improve. Analyze and study the works of masters. Visiting exhibitions and museums will help you understand current trends.. If you want to be a commercially successful artist, then you also need to become a good seller. You need to figure out how to make your art attractive. Don’t be afraid to learn new things from others. Try all genres and styles, and in some styles you will become irresistible.. Experiment constantly. Don’t be afraid of negative reviews about your work, your fans will eventually find you. Listen to your intuition and do what you are interested in.
JLS: Sound advice! Thank you for sharing. Art can touch people’s lives, bringing happiness and hope. For example, Linda Wehrli, who is also the founder/instructor at Pastimes for a Lifetime, partners with CoachArt to provide free art classes for families impacted by childhood chronic illness. Is there a charity you are fond of or support, that you might like our readers to learn more about?
DS: As I said, unfortunately I still have a busy work schedule and no free time.
JLS: Understandable. Thank you so much for your time and sharing your artistic wisdom with our readers!
To learn more about this talented artist, please enjoy visiting his social media:
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If you enjoyed this interview, please feel free to share on your favorite social media to get the word out about this great artist! Thank you for your support.
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Pastimes For a Lifetime Art and Piano School is located in Valley Glen, California. 818-766-0614. School is open Tuesday – Saturday year round, except major holidays.