Thursday, September 25, 2008

An Interview with "Kathleen Rietz"

Allow me to introduce and welcome the beautiful "Kathleen Rietz" A fantastic childrens book illustrator and designer. One of the top illustrators who are always in demand!

I'm a freelance artist and a "sometimes" art teacher. My hope is to make a positive difference in the world in everything I do
1.) I’ve read that you are Teaching Art Classes. So What is the most fun thing to teach about your Trade and what has been the most Challenging? (Sorry this was a double sided question haha)


Actually, I have taken a break from teaching this year. But I do miss it. I really enjoyed teaching children between the ages of 11 and 18. They are able to understand more complex and sophisticated concepts and their brains are fertile grounds for creative development. I find that when they love art, they willingly spend hours mastering and learning their craft. I find a lot of satisfaction in helping them to develop that love of art, since it is something they will take with them for a lifetime. I also know that if you give a bored teen an activity to enjoy, they will be less likely to get caught up in a bad crowd.
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2.) I understand that when you were in college you also did freelance art work at the same time. So was this a hard thing to do or was it rewarding and in what ways?

Art was something I always wanted to do, whether I got paid or not. But they pay is definitely a reward. It was fun to be able to experience the business side of the industry first hand while I was still in school. I did everything from hand lettered calligraphy to painting murals for children. I am still very diverse in my skill set to this day.


3.) I know there is something about art that draws us all in either just be a viewer and appreciate art work, or the creator of artistic expression. What was it that made you want to become the creator of art work?

I was drawing and painting before I learned to write my name, so for me it was innate.
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4.) Do you ever just create for your own enjoyment anymore?


Yes. Today I hope to go outside and draw in my sketchbook. I also love photography.


5.) What is your suggestion to get ones name out there and in front of prospective clients?


Promote, promote, and promote some more. The internet has made it much easier to get your work out there where it can be seen. A website is a must. Or a blog. A blog is free. You can also find critique groups in your area which can give you valuable feedback when developing your portfolio.



6.) What is the best piece of advice you can give to a young artist.

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Don’t forget to learn good basic business skills if you plan to pursue a career in art. Many artists lack business skills, and you do not want to be responsible for indulging the “starving artist” stereotype. I would also say, do not do a job for free. Many companies will try to take advantage of young artists by promising to give them credit for a project in lieu of payment. Trust me, your talent is valuable, and someone who doesn’t want to pay you for it is not worth working for. A reputable company understands how business is run and will always pay you for your work. When a new artist does a job for free, it also devalues the rest of us artists as a whole because then we are expected to also work for free.

7.) Can you give us a sampling of your publishers and a small list of Book Titles?

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“Prayers for Children”, Regina Press. “A Very Merry Mice Tale”, Roman. “My New Pet”, Harcourt. And I have 2 books I am now illustrating for 2009. One is a yoga book for children, which will be published by an independent publisher. The other is called “Little Black Ant on Park Street”, which will be published by Soundprints for the Smithsonian Institution.


8.) In the most recent past…what has been the hardest project to work on and why?


Most projects have some sort of challenge, whether it is a tight deadline or technically challenging artwork. The “Little Black Ant” book has both. There are 14 double page spreads in the book, and each painting will have to be technically accurate since it is a book about nature. I am working on the yoga book simultaneously, so the deadlines overlap. It is a challenge.


9.) Just for fun: If you knew that today was going to replay itself For the rest of your life…..what would be the last thing you’d do before you went to sleep tonight?

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Laugh and talk and eat and draw with the people who mean the most to me in my life. I like ending the day with appreciation in my heart and a smile on my face.


Please comment on this interview and take the time to visit all the sites you will find Kathleen in. Let us all welcome her and applaud her work!


4 comments:

Kate said...

Thank you so much John! This was very nice of you to interview me. Your questions got me thinking a lot about my answers and what art and life means to me. Thanks again. Kate

Anonymous said...

Awesome interview! I was listening to the answers and answering them for myself. I really loved the advice and appreciate the time both of you took for the interview!!
~Anita Martinez

Ramez said...

Great interview Cart

Jennifer Gladen said...

John and Kate,

What a great interview. Kate, your success is inspiring!

Available in Small Print and Poster sizes

If you are interested in any of these paintings (or any other particular piece of my art)please contact me for further information. My e-mail address is cartuneman85@yahoo.com

The Serpent King

The Serpent King
Available

Comfy Magic

Comfy Magic
Available

a man named Leonardo

a man named Leonardo

Moon Mist

Moon Mist
A painting for my Father also available in print poster or 8.5x 11

yellow house

yellow house

A stroll to the Bistro

A stroll to the Bistro

Vinice Water Way

Vinice Water Way

In the Shallows

In the Shallows

Low Tide

Low Tide
available