Sunday, November 20, 2011

Interview with Leila Hooper Zeitler of Aurafinearts


My professional background has been in the field of antiquities and fine arts. My professional background brought me tremendous satisfaction.

My artwork gives my a similar sense of gratification.

I am mesmerized by the bright spontaneous nature of light, atmosphere, patterns and textures created in our magnificent environment.

I create etchings from my original painted images featuring flowers, wildlife and landscapes. My images are infused with multiple layers of color using eco friendly modern printmaking materials and techniques.

I live in Cambridge, Ma. with my husband. We live in a small and lively city which is in close proximity to both the mountains and the sea which we both enjoy immensely.

Why do you like to print?

I love the spontaneous nature of printmaking.

I also enjoy exploring modern eco friendly materials and techniques. There is something very rewarding about learning to successfully use materials which are gentle to our planet and to ourselves.

What is your favorite print medium and why?

I am thrilled with modern printmaking materials and the success you can achieve with them once you have mastered their quirky characteristics.

I love the eco friendly inks which are made with soybean oil instead of toxic chemicals. I love being able to cure a solar etching plate with the natural light of the sun instead of acid. I adore using recycled, repurposed and found organic objects to create works of inspiration.

What a treat to have access to mediums that reflect our recognition to conserve and protect own natural environment.

How long have you been printing and how has your work evolved?

My first recollection of printing is when I was a child and I was teaching people to ink leaves and create intriguing patterns with them. A number of years later I am still encouraging people to experiment with this wonderful option in order to explore their own creativity. It’s an irony really.

In between, the need to experiment has allowed printmaking to be a true ally for me. Learning to recreate sketches, carving woodblocks and linoleum and learning how much passion I feel for the painterly monotype and gelatin printmaking have all played a significant role in the evolution of my artwork.

What Inspires You?

Sometimes, I feel like an explorer. I will get an idea and then I will pursue different methods I can use to interpret it.

Mostly, my inspiration is directly from our natural environment. It is so rich and abundant that I never lack new ideas and challenges.

Being engaged in my artwork keeps me very focused and gives me enormous sensitivity to our surrounding environment. Color, light, textures and patterns are all a part of what I may attention to. These sensitivities afford me a freedom in the way that I interpret and see the environment around me. And thus, the way that I interpret it in my work.

How do you promote your work?

Someone once said that you are either good at doing the artwork or good at promoting the artwork, but rarely are you good at both. I believe there is a lot of truth in that.

I stay connected to the various outlets of exposure.

I will enter several juried competitions this spring and summer. I will also be in several group and gallery shows. A small group of us have formed an environmental printmaking group and we are scheduled to promote several shows over the next year. I have two etsy shops featuring my work.

Are you working on any particular projects right now?

I am always at work on one project or another and manage to feel that there are not enough hours in the day.

To get back to something I am very passionate about, I am pursuing the field of promoting eco friendly printmaking materials and techniques. A small group of us recently formed and we have put together various proposals which will lead to exhibitions in the near future.

It’s a tremendous amount of work but it’s also something that can be very rewarding.

Tell us a random fact about yourself.

The first thing that comes to mind is related to the work we’ve been discussing.

Recently my husband and I have begun to produce videos which are a combination of my artwork and his musical accompaniment. We have worked on several now and they are highly effective and have been very well received.

We are in the process of producing another one which will feature a new batch of artwork I’ve been working on over the past 4-6 months, including new wildlife and botanical images. These will be accompanied by my husband’s music. He is a professional classical guitarist.

You can take a look at the one’s we have done. They are available on my website and on Youtube.

Check out Leila's Etsy Shop and Website

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