Below is the full interview with Broadway Galleries in Northern VA.
Read what they had to say: 2020 Artist to Lookout for: Amber Favre
1) Can you tell me a little more about your background and how you became an artist? What inspires you to paint?
I am a Seattle painter living in a town called Woodinville Wa. I focus on large textured paintings inspired by dream-like images. I started painting after a near-death experience that not only left me unable to walk for several months, but also completely changed my outlook on life. I saw how connected our internal world is to our external reality and felt a deep urge to create paintings that created a calm but uplifting "feeling" - something I feel we can all use more of in our hectic lives. They say the mind responds to color therapy (and visual images) in measurable ways, and I took this to heart. I went to school to understand how the brain responded to visual images earning a Bachelors Degree from University of Wa in Visual Communications. Outside of my studies, I painted and painted in hopes that I could create the right "feeling" and maybe it would help me feel better. I did eventually make a full recovery from my injuries, but ended up with so many paintings that I began donating them to Charity Auctions where they surprisingly fetched a good price. This is how I got my start in the "art world". I now paint with the intention that visual images can have a positive impact on our well-being.
2) What are your favorite subjects to paint and why? Do you have a favorite piece? If so, what is it and why is it your favorite?
All of my work is really trying to capture the expression of a "feeling" and hopefully invites the viewer to further contemplate it's meaning. My work does have an element of modern impressionism with a focus on a more colorful and abstract incorporation of impressionistic work. I like to paint subjects that are very classic in nature such as fruit, flowers, landscapes and figurative portraits because I feel these are timeless subjects that never go out of style, but I like to create a more vibrant reflection and interpretation of a simple subject to give it dimension. I like clearly defined brush strokes and texture so that up close the painting takes on a form of abstraction all by itself even if I'm painting a clearly defined subject or figure. All of my oil paintings are done in the ala-prima style and I mix all of my oil colors from a basic palette of red, blue, yellow, burnt umber and white. No blacks or paynes gray. I feel this unifies the colors and gives me a deeper connection to the outcome of the color. Blending the colors is a big part of the painting process for me because I am so carefully creating each color from scratch. It is a very satisfying process!
As far a favorite, I had to think about that. I am not sure if I can pick just one, but I am especially fond of my figurative painting "Eyes Closed". For me this represents sensing the world around you even when your eyes are closed. When your eyes are closed you can either be oblivious to your surroundings or you can try to use your other senses for guidance - it is your choice. This painting gives me a sense of calmness and comfort even with the warm background, like she is watching out for me even though her eyes are closed. She is seeing even though she can't see.
3) what are your favorite mediums to work with and why?
I started my career working with Acrylics because I liked how quickly they dried, but switched to oils because I really wanted to understand color theory in more depth and began mixing my own oil colors. I now work with both mediums depending on the painting. I focus very deliberately on the color, value and texture of the work. I spend a good portion of my time carefully blending colors and using a pallet knife over brush strokes to create more definition. I have recently started using acrylics again, but I feel I have gone full circle and have played with blending the colors and adding texture for dimension. It's a different medium than oil but I've challenged myself to see if I can create the look and feel of an oil painting using acrylics. I feel understanding both mediums really help bring more to each painting.
4) Who's your favorite artist and why?
My favorite artist is Tamara DeLempicka. Her classic muses but striking style combined with her ability to capture a mood really speak to me. I'm very intrigued by her ability to create timeless and classic looks. She has inspired me to focus on timeless qualities that never go out of style.
I am also a big fan of Monet for his subtle beauty and true abstraction in his water lilies, Cezanne for his pre-cubisim compositions, Sargent for his loose and brilliant brush strokes creating such a realistic look and Modigliani for his stylistic approach to his figures.
5) Are there any projects you have in the works for the future, or things you'd like to be working on?
I am focusing on creating collections of larger themed works that can be featured as a collection.