We would like to welcome you to Underworld Magazines, please introduce
yourself. Explain to us how you started and became known in your field.
My name is Martine johanna. I used to draw since I was a child. Growing up in a small village, I loved the close family life but the outside world was harsh and rigged. So I escaped trough my 'art', dreaming of other realities than mine, my imagination rescued me then. Since 2006 I slowly found my way back to drawing after 10 years, because it was the only way for me to reflect everything that was inside me and needed to come out. I hardly advertise my work, I do not do a lot of exhibits or search for publicity. The buzz that is being created has created itself. I like to concentrate on what I feel I have to make. I am never fully satisfied with my works and I have much, much more to expand and deepen. My aim is not to be a hype, I am here to develop and stay. To create something that is not bound to time but to peoples hearts.
When creating your art do you have any sort of motivation or muse behind it? Is it typically same for every piece that you work on, or does it vary depending on the type of piece.
I am aiming for an artisan craftsmanship that reflects my individual handwriting and personality.
The beauty of plain graphite, paper and an emotional breath is sometimes all it needs to make it work. I love nature, music, books, movies, art, love, heartache and the stream of life and decay.
And therefor love to create an unlikely universe in the shape of sometimes dark feminine fairy tales, where my inner world comes to life. Mostly when I draw or paint, I get lost in this other reality. he world becomes translucent and fluid.
It is apparent that you like to draw people. Are these people that you
draw part of your everyday life, or are they created from your minds eye?
Why do you enjoy drawing and painting people so much? Would you say that
you have mastered the skill of drawing people?
I draw people because I am human, I draw women, because I am a woman. I have the urge to catch that moment of dual emotions, in such a way that it feels very particular to an event. Sorrow, love, lust, pain, fragility, ambition, wisdom, sentiment, thoughtfulness, even when I write these words, words seem too blunt.
Some of my drawings are friends portraits, visualizations of the way that I see them. I use small photo's, but I direct whatever emotions and personality I want it to reflect. Every each piece I make feels like a piece of me and because of that, I have a hard time to sell my works.
I'm sure while working you utilize a lot of supplies. What kind are they, and how many do you go through while working on your pieces? Have you ever
ran out of supplies while working on a project with a deadline, if so how did you complete it. Did you end up using something you wouldn't normally use. How did it turn out?
I always have more materials than I need, because when I paint I get into a trance and stopping would be like a cold shower. I sometimes stick old newspaper in the paint layers when I get agitated. Painting for me is like a short lived addiction, a rush, a fight, a struggle. I paint for hours and sometimes 2 days straight. Since now I have a studio space this is much harder to maintain. But I've bought a mattress to crash there.
As for my drawings, I also never run out of stock. But I do experiment, like throwing coffee over my paper or red wine, just to see what it did, after drying I drew on it. And found out that coffee works gloriously but wine disintegrates the paper in such a way that drawing on it destroyed it. Quite like a life situation.
Could you pick one of your favorite pieces and walk us through on how you created it? Why is this specific piece your favorite of all the one's you have done?
'Louis' is a portrait that I made as a start of a series that is yet to be done. I had a couple of photographs of him that I liked because he is so fond of music. I wanted to portray his love for music and him being a creative, he is a graphic designer/artist and has a very unique personality. So I made my own composition and colors with it during painting. First setting up almost primary colors to create shadow and light, then molding skin and expression. Leaving parts of it as a drawing in graphite on bare canvas. And the arms and body remain rough and unfinished. I love that about it, it is far from a perfectly finished painting and therefore still breathes life and possibility.
We want to thank you for taking the time to answer our questions. A lot of our readers are very interested in what you do. Do you have a final
thought for them?
Go slow, do not get dragged into the fast digital pathway's. But see it as a tool. Stay earthbound, turn your frustration into skill, develop your interest in to depth and meaning, whatever it maybe. Honor your life and the life surrounding you and you will feel fulfilled.
Interview by; Underworld Magazines, NY