Over the years I’ve had the pleasure of helping upcoming artists and toy makers along the way. As I get older, I think I get more pleasure from helping artists or at least pointing them in the right direction 😉 A few months back I started noticing the work of Candie Bolton via Instagram. I had commissioned a painting from Candie of my two black cats, Lulu and Trixie, aka Double Trouble and this stunning painting was the result.
Honestly, I was amazed to learn that this was her only 3rd attempt at a full color painting. A few fellow artists who have seen this original at my house do not believe that this was her third attempt ;-P Ha ha.. well, regardless I knew Candie had the talent and passion to further her skills. I think you’ll agree that she has what it takes to make it in this business. I look forward to seeing more beautiful work from her and I really can not imagine where she’ll be at in another 5-10 years as she’s only in her twenties !
Here’s a short interview I had with artist Candie Bolton, March 2014.
Question: Can you tell us a bit of your background? How long have you been drawing? Did you go to art school?
Candie: If I had to guess I’d say I started drawing when I was 3 years old. My parents knew I had a talent for it when I was in kindergarten and my art was being featured in the school newsletters. I had a couple art classes in high school, a basic art class in community college, and a whole lot of art history, but aside from that I haven’t had much schooling in it.
Question: What influences your present art style ? Do you have any favorite artists or toy creators?
Candie: When I was a kid my drawings were influenced by nature and animals, but as I got older my interests shifted towards anime and everything Japanese so I tried to emulate manga artists for a while. My style now reflects a blending of those two influences. My absolute favorite artists are James Jean and Audrey Kawasaki, but I try to absorb influences from a wide spectrum of artists.
Cupids Volley ( from a recent Dragatomi show )
Question: I know you like cats and even have a very cool cat tattoo. Can you tell us why you like cats so much ?
Candie: There are so many reasons! Aside from being incredibly adorable they also make great cuddle buddies. I grew up with a lot of animals so it’s hard for me to pick favorites, but cats are definitely high on my list.
Question: You only just started painting, but I have been very impressed by your skill set. How is it you’ve been able to pick up painting so well so quickly ?!
Candie: I’m not deserving of your praise, I still have so much to learn! I don’t believe skills are gifted to people at birth, it’s something that you have to earn through hard work and dedication. I’ve been drawing my entire life so maybe those skills translated well to painting. Either that or all of my art history classes mentally prepared me for this moment!
Question: Max Toys is releasing a special Negora set with a giclee with your art. Can you tell us how that image came about .. Double Trouble ?
Candie: The only direction I was given was to draw two black cats so I played off that idea of duality by making the piece symmetrical. I came up with all the background imagery of fish and bird skulls because I was trying to think of what cats like and what a cat would consider “cool”.
Note: Sorry this Negora set has now sold out !
The painting above is in the upcoming Atomic Meltdown show at Clutter Gallery March 8th, 2014. (Note the painting has sold !)
Candie: What’s most important to me is that I keep improving my skills. I hope that a year from now I can look back at the paintings I’m doing now and feel like I’m a million times better than that. Career-wise I hope to have my first solo show, and a few of my own toys out by then!
I want to thank Candie for taking the time from her busy schedule to answer these questions. Honestly, if you haven’t heard of her, you will in the coming months 😉
Follow her to find out what shows she’ll be in below. I’ve got a few Max Toy projects in the works with her including this ;-P
And of course follow her via Instagram: http://instagram.com/arabbitinthemoon/#