Combine fresh flowers, the night sky and watercolour and you get inspirational graphic artist Ingrid Sanchez. A social media tour de force her Instagram feed bursts with energy, and is a delight for art lovers and botanists alike. Through dynamic mark making and the layering of rich tones she creates energetic floral compositions, often creating time-lapse videos to show how her paintings come to life from start to finish including one of an amazing concertina book she created for us you can see below. We were delighted to catch up with ingrid to talk about what shes been up to the last few months of lockdown. Enjoy!
Hi Ingrid, great to catch up with you. Your floral watercolour paintings are rich with colour and filled with a sense of dynamism and energy. Have you always worked in this style or has it evolved over time?
My practice is evolving all the time, I don’t want to feel like I’m painting exactly the same thing again and again. Watercolour is the main media I work with but not the only one. I love mixing mediums, techniques and playing with new ideas.
Could you tell us about the work you made in the concertina and materials used?
As weird as it sounds, I painted the concertina as a break between projects. Even though I am a full time artist, I also paint as a hobby, but the approach in both cases is different. When I received the concertina I immediately saw it as an opportunity to have a good time while practising brushstrokes and experimenting with colour. I wanted to paint something playful that didn’t require too much planning, and I literally used all the supplies I had been using from the collection that was in process. For this reason my concertina is a mixed media piece that includes watercolour, ink and acrylics from all kinds of brands.
Can you give us an insight into your creative process? When you first start working on your floral compositions, do you have the finished artwork in mind?
Everything comes from memories, feelings and experiences. I don’t sketch or work with photographs, but I do paint a lot just to play and find the flow I’m looking for. My first florals were born this way. After a visit to the botanical garden in Brooklyn, NY, I arrived home so inspired that I filled pages and pages with random strokes that with time became florals. For me everything starts with an idea, then I just find myself ‘brush dancing’ over a huge piece of paper. I am aware my process is a bit unusual, but it works for me and brings a lot of happiness to my proces
Over the last year it has been a strange time for a lot of people for obvious reasons and we've spoken to a lot of artists about their creative output over the last few months, with all varied answers. How has this pandemic affected your creative practice?
Curiously, I have never had so much work on as this past year! I collaborated with three tutorials in a Watercolour Techniques book that was released in September and I signed a deal for my first solo book that will be published this July. I also closed really interesting art licensing deals and painted two floral collections, each consisting of eight large paintings. Believe it or not, I did all this while suffering from long COVID. I got sick early last year before COVID-19 became so widespread, and I experienced all kind of weird symptoms over 10 months. I was exhausted and couldn’t move too much, which caused my practice to change dramatically. As you may know I tend to work on the floor using large pieces of paper but the concertina was ideal because it was a small format so I could paint it while working on a table.
Now that I see the artworks I have produced during this time, I definitely see how my art has been affected by the circumstances. I explored extreme layering, but I can also tell when I was tired, because some paintings feel unfinished to me. I have learned that no matter what, painting is always the best therapy and each piece tells a story and is a personal reminder of all that I have endured during these challenging times.
Can you tell us what you're working on at the moment?
I am currently working on the last corrections of my solo book. There is lots of reading, photo selection and last minute changes. There are a couple of campaigns of collaborations that will be launched this year with some companies in the USA. Since I can’t travel to promote, everything will be online and it needs some planning. Finally, I also have a collaboration with a cosmetic company here in the UK for some artworks that I am just finalising. I hope I’ll find time to create an online workshop, and I can’t wait to start working on my Spring collection.
You’re Instagram account is a feast for the eyes! Do you think it’s important for artists today to be active on social media?
I think it is important in terms of being open to new opportunities. But I don’t think that being on IG makes you an artist, it is just a part of the job. I know lots of successful artists who have very little presence in social media because they do not the time or interest on it.
Discover how to create an abstract floral artwork with Ingrid Sanchez