Thursday, November 6, 2014

Artist Interview With Nathaniel Mather

Hello everyone, hope you are all having a wonderful week?

Get ready to be inspired as it's time for my next artist interview!

I greatly admire this man's work & his wisdom. When I first saw one of his paintings, I literally got goose bumps & my heart soared- ever had that reaction to art? I think I then lost a good part of my day (when I should have been working) researching his work & trying to find out more about him & his art. I love that when I look at his paintings, they tell me stories about adventure & forgotten lands......

Please enjoy my artist interview with Nathaniel Mather.



Hi Nate, can you tell us a bit about yourself/your background & how long you've been painting & illustrating professionally for?

Growing up in Los Angeles, California, I didn’t dream of becoming an artist, my passion was music. I started playing drums at age seven and by the time I was sixteen I was playing professionally. In my mid twenties I began to long for a more independent artistic expression and I took up painting.

I enrolled in art school, California Institute of the Arts, and then Art Center College of Design. I was a very poor student, I did not listen well or take instruction and by my third year of college I was showing in galleries throughout the US so I dropped out of college.



When & how in that journey did you discover Mixed Media?

My first medium was watercolor, and then I began introducing acrylic. I worked in these mediums for a number of years.
I then became very disenchanted with the art world and stopped painting altogether, and started a career in the golf business, as a Head Golf Professional and General Manager of golf clubs. The paints stayed on the shelf for 5 years before I picked up a brush again. When I started to paint again I experimented with mixed media , paper, found objects, different mediums, pastels, old world prints, really anything that I thought had nice design and color.



When starting a new piece of work, staring at a blank canvas or piece of paper can be daunting. What is your go to/favourite method you use to create the backgrounds for your paintings? And what are your favourite art supplies?

In most of my paintings, the objects are a mixture of collage, paper and paint and the background is mostly paint, so I start with a drawing or concept of the painting and block in my objects and then complete the background. I know that’s the opposite of what I was taught, but remember I was a poor student. I also developed my digital skills in Illustrator and Photoshop to use these tools in my illustrations.

New paintings originate from my journal, capturing ideas, feelings and moments during the week that I am experiencing. I like to illustrate concepts and emotions, ideas and struggles; my work is very personal in its imagery and message.



For anyone trying to turn their creative passion into their career it can be very daunting & intimidating. Can you tell us how you overcame any negative thinking (if you had any) about your career as an artist?

I understand how difficult it is to develop a career in the arts. First you need to become proficient with you craft, then you need to be willing and able to expose your inner self with your art, next you develop your own voice and style, then you need someone to connect with your work, then maybe that someone has enough money to buy your work, next you need a platform to show your work so more people can connect with it. All the while you need money to pay the rent.

Here are some thoughts I rely on:

God made me unique, gifted me with talent and is deeply involved in my journey.

Everyone has negative thoughts and doubts about their art. It’s very normal to creative souls. Use your conflict to deepen you art.

Don’t get stuck thinking about the final results, enjoy your process and time creating.

Find people to share your struggles and joys. Develop a support group, a safe place where you can process and grow.

I paint because it brings me joy, that’s enough...

Perseverance is key; you won’t get better without obstacles and pain.

My worth is not related to my art.



For anyone just starting out in their career what do you think is the best way to get your work out there & seen? For example, an Illustration or Art Agent? Approaching possible clients with your portfolio? A website? Or a combination of all?

In today’s world market a website is basic to your success. Spend time and develop a site that reflects your style and target market.  Keep it fresh and current, nothing worse than news that’s old and outdated.

Join art organizations in you area and network with other like minded artists. If you are an Illustrator there are many sites that you can post your work on. My favorite is Illustration Mundo. If you can get a rep/agent it helps open doors you might not open on your own.

Social media has exploded and you can use it to tell your story. Bring people into your world and connect with your vision and work. Viewers like to know about the artist, their motivations, technique and world view. 

For Fine Artists, developing gallery representation is difficult and time consuming. Research galleries that show your style, find out if they are taking artist submissions and send your work to as many as you can. I have found that most of my galleries relationships have developed by referral or other artist recommendations to the gallery owners.
In America there dozens of art festivals, where an artist sets up a booth outside on the street and sells their work. These festivals can be a great way to get feedback on your work and develop connections to other selling avenues.



What other artists are inspiring you at the moment?

I am inspired both with visual art and music. Living in Nashville TN, I have the privilege to meet and experience great musicians and music. I am working on a project for a band called “Dogs of Peace”. One of the players is Gordon Kennedy; I really love his writing and guitar style.

Visual artists that inspire me are:
Illustrators – Calef Brown, Nate Williams, Martin Haake, Olaf Hajek, Richard Faust, Jordin Isip, Beppe Giacobbe, Simona Mulazzani and Hilke MacIntyre.

Fine Artists that inspire me are:
Jean Dubuffet, Nicholas Wilton, Elaine Pamphilon, Judy Paul, Richard Diebenkorn and Rudolfo Tamayo.



Thanks so much for taking part Nate, please tell us where can we connect with you?

Website: www.nathanielmather.com

7 comments:

Saskia said...

Wow, thanks for sharing the beautiful work of Nathaniel Mather!!!

Smiles from Belgium, Saskia :)

Little Brown Rabbit said...

You're welcome Saskia! So pleased you enjoyed it :)

Siggadisart said...

It was so nice to read his story, thank you. I love his work, makes me happy to look at :-)

Little Brown Rabbit said...

So pleased you liked it Siggadisart : -)

Pia Rom said...

Oh I really enjoyed reading his story and look to his incredible art pieces..thank you so much! ♥ Conny
Piaroms Art Journaling

Little Brown Rabbit said...

You're most welcome Conny! So pleased you liked it :)

OBAT PERANGSANG WANITA said...

i like good