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Kasandra McNeil
P.O. Box 226
15605 West Highway 80
Nancy, KY 42544
606-871-9723 (Home)
606-416-4347 (Cell)
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Visit Kasandra's studio at:
Artist's Attic
401 W. Main Street, #401
Lexington, KY
Most Wednesdays and
Fridays 11am to 4pm
Please contact via email
for a private consultation

 

Kasandra McNeil
Artist Statement

The number one question I receive from individuals visiting my art studio for the first time is, "Do you really know these people?"

The guests usually stand in the center of my studio, turn and gaze at the various portraits hanging on my walls.  Once I assure them that, yes, I know all of the people I have painted, and all the locations for the landscapes I have painted, they give an almost inaudible sigh and then walk closer to the walls.

I soon realize that guests visiting my studio want to know details.  Who are these people? Where is that barn located? Why do all of the paintings have a reddish-brown undercoating?  What makes me tick as an artist?

Answering the question about how I choose the people I paint is very easy.  Inspired by the American-born impressionist, Mary Cassatt, I relish capturing people in very fleeting, yet special moments.  A first dance with a new fellow. A toddler meeting a dog for the first time. Children playing violins at a recital. I keep my camera at the ready.

I studied figurative drawing under Dr. Yoder at Greenville University.  More recently, I attended a workshop given by Chantel Barber. I have also studied pencil sketch portraiture with David Stenulson.  For landscapes, I have studied with Bill Fletcher.

For everything I paint, I attempt to have a strong composition, so the eye is led to the heart of the painting.  For portraits, I use a verdaccio palette: black and white mixed with ochre to get a family of greens. Those greens become an underpainting before truer skin tones are applied.  I attempt to work those colors into my landscapes as much as possible as well.

Having said all of that, I don't necessarily plan out a next painting, unless I'm working in a series for an exhibit.  Sometimes, I use a live model and sketch and photograph the individual in my studio. Other times, I'm painting plein air and adapting to the outside elements.  Still others, I am photographing dancers at a contra dance or ballet practice.

The location or the individual have to grab my spirit.  A face may not be beautiful by Hollywood standards, but may be interesting and convey an emotion that's relatable to the average viewer.  I simply try to remain open for adventure.

 

 
©2017 KASANDRA McNEIL• ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.