Artist Interview with Derek Johnson

Artist Interview with Derek Johnson

Purchase fine art for sale by Derek Johnson.

Welcome to AllArtWorks Featured Artist Series!

1. What other profession is similar to being an artist and why?

I’m not sure if I could compare another profession to that of an artist. I can imagine maybe a slightly obsessive inventor (Doc Emmett Brown), tinkerer, or someone who makes things that may or may not be of use to others. I think passion and curiosity about people and the world make artists out of any profession.

2. What’s the nicest thing you can remember someone said about your work, or an individual piece?

Some of the best (maybe not nicest) things anyone has said about my work have been constructive and critical. It has been helpful to my work to have trusted friends who give honest feedback.
Compliments are always nice and appreciated though!

3. What’s one thing you’d like everyone to know about you as an artist?

When I’m painting, drawing, or sculpting, I feel like I’m doing the thing I am supposed to be doing: for better or for worse.
4. What was the last piece of art that you saw that blew you away?

Years ago, I was visiting the Honolulu Museum of Art and was really impressed with the Chinese scroll paintings hanging on the walls. I bought a gallery book and some postcards at the gift shop. I mostly bought the book to look at those amazing ink landscapes by 17th century monk/painter Wu Bin. I’ve recently been looking at and appreciating his paintings in general. I think his work is technically and emotionally very powerful. There is a sense of deep space and it feels really epic in scale. Looking closer, you can see the tiny buildings and evidence of people. I love traveling through these worlds with my eyes.

5. What’s something you haven’t done but you want to do in art/painting?

I’ve always wanted to take an artist’s residence in the country for a few weeks by myself and do nothing but paint, eat, and sleep. A one room cabin with a wood stove in the Fall sounds ideal. Although, after the extended shelter-in-place, I might not be in such a rush to isolate myself for such a length of time.

6. Which artist do you like better - Ingres or Delacroix, and why?*

I really like them both the same as painters. If I had to choose, probably Delacroix. His impact on modern painting seems more significant. I appreciate his energy and dynamism in his work.

*The reason we ask about Delacroix and Ingres is because they were contemporaries with wildly different styles!