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Interview with Mia Schulte

Mia Schulte

Finding your Passion and Inspiration

Mia’s self-awareness, passion and skill fairly glisten from each canvas she touches. It would seem her passion and interests for art are a part of her. So hold on dear reader as you let her education, vision and artistic delight inform your mind and heart.


Mia credits the large part of her passion to her family, especially her father. He took her to the great museums of Europe as a child and encouraged her drawing. He studied art in his 50’s. He took a class in every medium and studied all facets of art from the making of paints to creating art. At one point her brother, Mia and her father were all taking art classes. The desire to challenge oneself was instilled in her at an early age.

“Mindset is important in whatever you do” she counsels. “As an artist you need to be open to learning and challenging yourself. You also have to believe in yourself, accept failure and keep working. Artists have to be able to stand constant critiquing. The teachers, judges, art critics and customers will analyze your skill, subject matter, composition, background, etc. An artist needs to develop a tough skin but also has to learn to be their worst critic. It is easy to fall in love with a work because it came from you, however it is good to put it aside and come back to the painting with a fresh eye to truly assess the painting’s strengths and weaknesses. You need to be tough on yourself in order to improve. One of her favorite quotes: “In the end, your paintings must come from your own dexterity, have a sense of your own vision and make statements about art that are unique unto your own self.” by Robert Henri (The Art Spirit). She finds inspiration in nature and life in general. “Each painting is different,” she says as she spends considerable time thinking about a feeling or thought before beginning a painting. “The thought is most important.” She says. As an abstract painter Mia digs deep to allow the process to evolve until she has determined what she wants to say. She wants each painting to capture a moment in time and be a true expression of what she was feeling or reflecting upon. The painting evolves and she knows when the real expression begins to display itself. She likes to work on the floor in order to feel closer to the process. She rotates the painting, allowing her to explore all aspects of the painting. Working on the floor allows her complete freedom, a connection to the surface and an ability to remain open to new possibilities. There is this constant dialogue between the artist and the work. “My process takes time and as a result I do not produce a large volume of paintings per year.” She hopes that her art will provoke thought and that each time one visits it they will find something new. The above painting, “Hidden Layers” is an acrylic on canvas painting using acrylic and ink. Her color choice was determined by mood. The style is semi-abstract. There are elements of nature’s forms in all of her works and sometimes you can distinguish what they are and sometimes not. Mia does not try to duplicate a single flower or stem or branch, yet she combines these lines to create form that is unique to the expression at the time. She finds inspiration in masters such as Donatello, Caravaggio, Cezanne, Sargent, Emily Carr, Franz Klein, Picasso, and Henry Moore, Robert Henri, etc. “The list is too long!” She says that her visits to museums and galleries are full of lessons to be learned. Her background includes previous jobs working in Administration/Facilities Planning for the corporate world. The experience gave her a true appreciation for the importance of display/balance. She had the opportunity to commission and purchase art for corporations. Her job involved working with designers, architects, manufacturers, art consultants, and contractors. She later taught art in Middle School, worked in a gallery, and is currently President of The Artists’ Gallery. She has exhibited extensively and is a member of Woman Painters of Washington. She says that her experience has given her a greater appreciation for all of the professions involved in the art world. She feels so fortunate to have art in her life. She wants to thank her family, teachers and friends for encouraging her to pursue her love of art.

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