For one month of the year, Anna Rose Bain plunges wholeheartedly into a flurry of floral paintings, and her love for nature frequently sends her outdoors to paint Colorado’s landscapes, but the artist confesses she is a figurative painter at heart. Bain’s winning entry features not only her preferred genre but also one of her favorite subjects. “I’ve painted ballerinas for quite a few years
now, and to me it’s the perfect marriage of visual art, music, and the beauty of dance,” she says.
The artist values collaboration with her models, and they often contribute their own ideas to scenes. For the photo shoot that inspired Bain’s winning oil painting, the dancer brought along a vintage tutu she borrowed from her ballet company. “As soon as she put it on, it transported her to a different time and place,” says Bain. “The tutu is almost angelic. I actually emphasized the coolness of the natural light to bring out the beautiful blues.”
Bain earned her fine-arts degree from Hillsdale College in Michigan, and she also studied figurative painting at the Florence Academy of Art, where instruction focuses exclusively on classical realism. Old-master methods remain a cornerstone in Bain’s creative process today, but the artist is also loosening up her brushwork. “I’m a recovering classicist,” she laughs. “I’m really inspired by impressionism, and I find that my paintings end up being a combination of classical and alla prima because I do so many alla-prima studies. A successful painting, for me, ends up being tight and polished in certain areas and loose and painterly everywhere else.” Find Bain’s work at Saks Galleries, Denver, CO, and John Carroll Doyle Art Gallery, Charleston, SC.
This story was featured in the December 2017 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art December 2017 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story.
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