Artist Q&A - Alena Carvalho

Artist Q&A - Alena Carvalho

Who or what has most influenced your artistic journey?

In terms of 'who', I couldn’t pick just one favourite or influential artist as there are just so many amazing artists out there - but from a very young age, it was the Impressionists who impressed me the most.  Trying to depict the light and its changing qualities is one of the challenges I like to take on in most of my cityscapes.  What has influenced me most? The Internet! It's a bottomless well of ideas, guidance and inspiration...where would I be without it?!

 

Why are you drawn to your particular subject matter?

I love travelling, city breaks, and city walks. I grew up in Prague, so I was surrounded by beautiful architecture whichever way I looked. But what I love about painting cityscapes is not just the buildings – which provide a backdrop for all the other changeable elements - but also the people, buses, trams, bikes, which really bring the scene to life. I could happily paint the same corner of London dozens of times as the changing composition, light, and weather would offer a different scene each time.

 

Has your preferred medium changed over the years?

I started off with pencil sketches, watercolour, and ink, but as my paintings grew larger in scale, I swapped paper for canvas, and watercolours for acrylics...and they are still my favourite medium. They are so versatile and fast-drying so that you can finish a painting in one sitting...although I am yet to achieve that! And, unlike watercolours, they are very forgiving. 

 

What's the best piece of advice you have been given?

"Stop! It’s finished!" is the best advice I am given - time after time. Do I always listen? Of course not...and most of the time I end up regretting it! But I am sure I am not the only artist guilty of that.

 

What is the biggest challenge of being an artist?

Creative block. Occasionally I manage to work my way through it, but most of the time it’s better to put the brush down and do something else. My house is usually very clean, and the garden always looks its best when I am suffering from a block...so at least there is a silver lining!

 

Check out Alena's collection of limited edition prints and original paintings on our online gallery.

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