Artist Spotlight: Sandra Fremgen

Sandra’s Portfolio 

Pandoras-Box-Painting-Sandra-Fremgen

Where are you from?
I was born in Hong Kong and currently living in Los Angeles. 

Could you give us a brief overview of your art background?
With my background in traditional painting and digital art, I have been working as a surface designer for the past 9 years. I have created artwork for fabric, greeting cards, photo albums, dinnerware and many other items used to decorate your home. I love designing for the mass market because it allows the majority of us to buy a beautiful item at an affordable price. At night I paint my “Panda and Me” series because it’s important to create art based on personal enthusiasm.

Describe some of the jobs you have done professionally how they have helped develop your artistic skills.
Over the years, I have worked as in-house artist, freelance and even ran my own licensing business! When you are a working designer, you must have a thorough understanding of the goals your clients are trying to achieve. This means researching the market and trends that relate to your client’s products. Artistically, learning how to combine my traditional painting with digital skills has really sped out my output rate. I can still create art that looks traditionally hand done when I am on the computer. Clients usually don’t understand the artistic process and want the turn around ASAP.

Elvis-Panda-and-the-Mermaid-by-Sandra-Fremgen

How has being a part of GirlsDrawinGirls helped you as an artist?

Being a part of GDG has opened up my eyes to what drawing the female form is about. When I was a kid, I spent many afternoons drawing pretty ladies in my school notebooks. However, as I got older, I became reluctant to draw ladies because I feared that I was contributing to the “problem.” Meaning, if I kept drawing the idealized female form, was I supporting the message of unachievable female beauty? Being part of GDG helped me work out these issues. I love seeing how my talented colleagues show their beautiful interpretations of female beauty and power. GDG has been a big chapter in my artist growth.

How has your particular style evolved?
When I first started painting ladies, I just copied everybody’s style that I liked. My first attempts looked like Jack Vettriano paintings and later the evolved into SHAG knock offs. The more I paint and draw, the more comfortable I am in my own skin and it shows in my art. Right now, especially with “Panda and Me,” my artwork is a cross between Hello Kitty Cute and Mad Men Retro Cool!

Do you have a preference between working with digital or traditional methods? Could you give a couple reasons why?

In my day job, I use both digital and traditional. When I’m painting on my own, I prefer to use acrylics because they are traditional yet dries so much faster than oil! In this age of mass production, I prefer to create a truly unique one of a kind object such as a painting. I love being able to hold it in my hands and see the texture of the paint on wood.

Are there any artistic disciplines that you have a passion for?
Aside from painting, I LOVE to dance! I’ve been swing dancing, doing ballet and Polynesian for a long time. In swing dancing, I love the give and take of the leader and follower. As the follower, I don’t know what is the next move and must rely on the signals from the lead. This moment of tension of “what will happen next?” is what I try to capture in my paintings.

Panda-and-the-informant-by-Sandra-Fremgen

Is there a type of art that you’ve always wanted to learn?
I would like to be a better sewer and fashion designer. I’ve made every mistake possible in sewing my dresses!

Based on your professional experiences, do you have any advice for aspiring young women artists?
It will take a while before you figure out what you want to say in your art. So for now, focus on mastering all the technical skills such as drawing, composition, design and color theory. The more technical skills you know, the better you will be able to communicate through your art. When you become a working artist, you will inevitably hear some horrible things said about your work. It is a blow to your ego, but you will be able to move on because of your proven track record in the past.

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