21 Under 31: Young Artists to Watch in 2013 | Robin Cole Smith

Robin Cole Smith, Instinct III, encaustic/charcoal, 46 x 46.

Robin Cole Smith, Instinct III, encaustic/charcoal, 46 x 46.

California

Art Education: I didn’t have much formal art education until after college, when I decided to switch disciplines and attended a post-baccalaureate program at the Burren College of Art in Ireland and the Laguna College of Art and Design’s master’s degree program in fine arts.

Style: A unique combination of traditional charcoal drawing and layered encaustic. I focus on subject matter from the natural world, and I draw in a spare, monochromatic, but highly representational style.

Creative Spark: Deep forests, birds, snow, geology, botany, and elemental forces in the natural world as well as the mysterious, the esoteric, and the overlooked.

Second-Choice Career: Possibly a professor of medieval literature or maybe a classicist since my bachelor’s degree is in English. But I definitely considered biology and the natural sciences, so maybe an ecologist.

Robin Cole Smith, The Sentinels, encaustic/charcoal, 30 x 45.

Robin Cole Smith, The Sentinels, encaustic/charcoal, 30 x 45.

Other Passions: Literature of all types, Irish folk music, animals, travel, creative cooking, and dreaming—the nighttime kind.

One Thing Most People Don’t Know About You: I have a much-loved and ever-expanding Darwin-esque collection of odds and ends I pick up in nature and organize onto shelves and in jars and glass boxes to admire. I have everything from seed pods to birds’ nests to sheep’s wool to butterfly wings.

Quirkiest Trait: When I get home from the studio late at night, I go through my entire porch garden with a headlamp, looking for snails. It’s the only way, if I want to eat the Swiss chard before they do.

Price Range: $250 to $6,500.

Representation: Walker Fine Art, Denver, CO; www.noctua-creative.com.

Featured in the September 2013 issue of Southwest Art magazine–click below to purchase:
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